Follow this flip: An almost-done porch

I hope you all had a very blessed Thanksgiving! Oh how I enjoy taking a break from the usual grind to spend time with family and friends, eating and recognizing the many, many things we have to be thankful for. Is it just me or is it tough to “get the train rolling” again after such a glorious holiday?

Anyway, although the caboose seems to be running a little slow this week, ūüėČ I’m back on the tracks again, so I wanted to share a bit of progress on the white house.

The front porch is this.close to being completely done. I’ve got to do a little bit of touch-up painting on the stairs and some staging to do. And I’ll be installing a new front door (new windows and trim¬†are coming later as separate projects). Then this¬†tiny part of the huge project will be wrapped up.

Let’s rewind¬†a few weeks, shall we?

Front-porch-before Landcaping-BEFORE-1 Landcaping-BEFORE-2 Porch ceiling before Porch-rail-before

And now?


I did a bit of thrifty landscaping out front. Then I painted the porch posts, porch trim and floor.

I am absolutely in love with the color I chose for the porch ceiling.


I decided on a “haint blue” color I was inspired by while living in South Carolina. There, you’ll find many gorgeous, historic Southern front porches with this¬†blue-green hue on the ceiling. Haint blue has a rich history you can read about here. I went with a fairly subtle¬†blue¬†so as not to scare all the Northerners away. ūüėČ I chose¬†Clark+Kensington brand¬†from Ace. I’ve had good success with their exterior paint in the past.

Before I added the¬†haint blue¬†color, I used Zinsser Peel Stop¬ģ Triple Thick High Build Binding Primer to seal all the¬†cracks, chipping paint, etc. It made this old porch ceiling look brand new again! If I could marry this primer and have its babies, I would.¬†ūüėČ

I picked up an inexpensive porch rug at Ross to tie together the new ceiling and floor colors.


I spray-painted the old porch swing a rich mahogany color. My HomeRight¬ģ Finish Max Pro¬†painted this thing in a snap and created such a flawless finish, the wood almost looks like it’s composite! I LOVE how it turned out.


It’s been raining cats and dogs outside for the past few days, so I’ve moved inside to work on the bathroom. It is a scary, scary place right now, people. I’m completely demolishing the walls. So far I’ve managed to step on a rusty nail, smash my pinky finger with a hammer, choke myself half to death on drywall dust, and nearly electrocute myself from¬†a¬†“mystery” outlet. All in a day’s work …

*Affiliate links are provided in this post for your convenience. 

Quick and easy fall craft (plus a stain and poly comparison video)

My fall craft mojo has kicked into full gear, mostly because I took a run today that was so freakin’ hot I truly thought I was going to melt into a puddle of my own sweat. Yep. I am now officially ready for cooler weather.

Today I wanted to share with you a simple and inexpensive fall craft you can complete in one toddler nap time. True story.


Supplies you’ll need for this project:

  • Wooden frame¬†(Mine is a Crates and Pallet version – available at¬†Home Depot – but you could use any leftover frame¬†you have on hand, provided it still has its¬†cardboard backing intact.)
  • Chalkboard spray paint¬†
  • Wood stain¬†in a cherry finish
  • Chalk and chalk markers
  • Regular printer paper
  • Polyurethane to seal the frame (optional)

Below are the step-by-step instructions and a quick video* that shows exactly how I made this craft project. I also include in the video a demonstration comparing a few different stains and polyurethanes.

Step 1: Stain the frame.

Step 2: Spray the frame’s cardboard backing with a coat of chalkboard paint.

Step 3: While the frame and cardboard dry, design and print out the words for your art on regular printer paper. I created my design in a simple Word document.

Step 4: Take a piece of regular chalk and rub it onto the back of all your paper printouts.

Step 5: Position the paper printouts onto the chalkboard-painted cardboard (make sure the paint is dry first).

Step 6: Take a blunt pencil and trace the outline of your printed words. (This will transfer¬†a faint chalk “carbon copy” onto the cardboard. You can see another example of this method here.)

Step 7: Fill in the chalk outline using chalk markers of your choice. Done!

Have you done any fall crafting yet?

*Special thanks to Rust-Oleum for sponsoring the video featured in this post and to Crates and Pallet for providing the frame used for this craft project. 

Stained washcloth crate with DIY metal tag

In one afternoon recently, I transformed this small, unfinished crate (from Crates and Pallet, available at Home Depot) into this washcloth holder for our master bathroom using some stain and sheet metal.


To replicate this project, check out the steps below.

Step 1:¬†Apply a coat of Varathane¬ģ water-based wood stain in Worn Navy to any¬†unfinished crate.


This¬†stain¬†dries in one hour and cleans up with soap and water, which¬†means there is now hope for finishing a project during my toddler’s nap time. ūüôā


Step 2: Apply a coat of Varathane Antique White stain over the navy color, using a piece of steel wool to rub it into the grain to create an aged finish. Wipe off any excess.


Step 3: After the stain dries, seal the crate with a coat of polyurethane. I like Varathane Triple Thick Polyurethane. I used the satin finish for this project.

Step 4:¬†While your¬†poly is drying, trace an oval shape onto a piece of thin sheet metal. You’ll want to keep the shape rounded to avoid any sharp corners.

Sheet-metal-labelStep 5: Cut out the shape using a pair of tin snips. I bought mine for about $10 at Home Depot.


Step 6: Label the cutout using a hammer and letter stamp punch set. I used this one.*

Step 7: Attach your label to the crate with tiny screws or brads. Done! 



What do you think of my new washcloth crate?

Special thanks to Rust-Oleum for providing the Varathane products needed to complete this project. As always, all thoughts, opinions and projects are 100 percent mine.

*This is an affliate¬†link. Purchasing through this link won’t cost you anything additional, but a small portion will come back to Living Rich on Less, helping me continue to provide great, free content to you. Thanks in advance for your support!