"I love my cats because I love my home, and little by little they become its visible soul." Jean Couteau

Monday, June 3, 2013

it's the little things (part 1)

This post is a collection of a few smaller projects that I've been slowly checking off my list. None of them are super exciting, so I didn't think they each deserved their own post. This will be a on-going post, whenever I get a couple of small things done.

Toilet Paper Holder
Back in December 2011, my parents and sister and brother-in-law came to visit. It was the first time we'd had more than two people visiting at a time, and since we only have one guest room, this was a bit of a problem. So, we rushed out and got a pull-out sofa for the downstairs rec room and called it good. There's a full bathroom on that floor, but after having some people using it full-time for a few days, I realized that it has a sever lack of storage. So, several months ago, I bought an etagere. I can't remember where I got it, either Target or Amazon, most likely. Assembling it was no problem, but when I went to put it in the bathroom, it ran into the toilet paper holder. The way the holder is designed, it couldn't just be flipped around to face the other direction, so I just took it out and set the toilet paper roll on the shelf of the etagere. And that's how it stayed for many months until I got un-lazy enough to pull out the old drywall anchor, patch the hole, and put the holder back in a few inches to the left.

I didn't think to take a 'before' picture, so this is me just holding the toilet paper holder up where it used to be. See how there's no space between the holder and etagere?

Yanking the drywall anchor was really hard. So hard, in fact, that it didn't actually happen. I guess that's good because the point is to really grip and hold into the drywall. I did manage to rip off the outer part of it, though, so I could still fill in the hole and have it be all flush with the wall. Here is the wall after I filled in the hole with spackle. You can see on the left where I penciled in my plan of where to relocate the toilet paper holder.

After allowing the spackle to dry at least the recommended 30 minutes, I sanded it down and painted over the area with some of the remaining wall/ceiling paint left behind by the builders. Now you can barely tell there used to be a hole there!

Then, all I had to do was put the toilet paper holder back in. Easier said than done. There's a plastic cylinder-type thing that screws into the wall, then the metal toilet paper holder attaches to that. But now I just spackled my drywall anchor into the wall, so I went to Home Depot to get a new one. As is my usual MO, I took the cylinder and screw with me to make sure I got something that would work. After staring at all the options for a long time, I finally picked a drywall anchor that looked like the screws that came with it were about the same size as my screw. I got a pack of two. Back home, I screwed my screw part way into one of the anchors to make sure it actually fit. It was a little tight, but I thought it would work, though in my test, holding the anchor with some pliers, I busted the plastic. That's why I had two! So I started screwing the drywall anchor into the wall, per the instructions. Not very far in, it started getting really tough, and then the plastic busted. Great. I was too lazy to rush back out to Home Depot, so I waited until the next weekend when I had some other things to get too. I chose a different kind this time, with the help of a kind sales associate, who also made the obvious suggestion that I should just use the screw that comes with the anchor. Again, I got a pack of two. This time, success was had, and we again have our toilet paper hanging on the wall, with enough space to change out used-up rolls.

Dresser Drawer Knobs
Last week, I posted about painting the furniture in the guest room. After that, I decided it would look nice to put knobs on the dresser drawers to kind of class up the Ikea a bit. Initially, I thought I would get purple glass knobs, but after a bunch of searching online, I found these green metal ones from The Turquoise Cottage on Etsy that I feel in love with:

The shop owner, Carey, was great to work with and very responsive when I had questions about the shipping. The knobs shipped on Wednesday and arrived Friday. Since the Ikea drawers aren't designed to have knobs, I had to drill holes. I measured both width and height to find the center of the small top drawers. Then I used those measurements to measure the placement for the knobs on the large drawers, so all the knobs would line up. It took a little trial and error to get the holes the right diameter for the screws, but I always start small since you can always make the hole bigger, but not smaller. Eventually I got it right and drilled all the holes. After some quick dust-busting cleanup, I just stuck the screws through the holes and screwed on the knobs. Pretty simple. And now, this is the guest bedroom dresser:

I love how the green is a little pop of something different among all the purple in the room. And the design on the knobs plays well with the paisley of the bedspread.


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