Budget Entry: Moderate Woodworking Edition

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I'm back with some updates on my entry progress! To recap, I'm trying to inject some personality into my oh, so basic entry, on a work-with-what-ya-got budget. You can check out the first two posts in the series here and here

So surprise, it's not so boring anymore. Progress has been made, by way of some scrapwood DIY concoctions. Disclaimers are annoying, but I'll risk your judgement to once again explain I have no misconceptions about my woodworking abilities. I am mediocre at best (reckless at worst), but ultimately too cheap/single-minded to care.

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Let's start with the wall hooks. This narrow hallway has always befuddled me. It's too small to fit any normal sized furniture without obstructing the well-traveled passageway. But it's also too large of an area to leave empty (which is basically how it's sat since we moved in). I've thought about adding a long row of wall hooks for awhile, but just never worked up the motivation. Deciding to paint a portion of the entry green, and using the hooks as the dividing line, was the perfect push to make it happen.       

I had a leftover 8' strip of birch plywood from building Darby's table that I used as my starting point, and decided to add a picture ledge to the mix as well. There's a lot of Pinterest fodder out there touting the $10 DIY Picture Ledge, but since I was starting out with such a pretty piece of wood I wanted to purchase something a little higher quality, not just the cheap framing stuff, to make my attached picture ledge. I went with poplar (totally the cheapest of the "nice" woods) based on affordability, but mostly because it looked the most similar to the birch.

I was after a more modern, not so rustic look so I just used Teak Oil on all three pieces. It's hard to see in the above photo, but the poplar didn't look as golden as the birch so I very sparingly added a bit of some Golden Pecan wood stain I already had on hand. Luke helped me with the actual attaching portion because I hate anything meticulous, and he is amazing. 

As much as I wanted to go with the large brass vintage schoolhouse hooks of my dreams, it just didn't align with my cheap, cheaper, cheapest method. So I scrounged around the house and (seriously) was able to come up with 10 random (free!) hooks. Some of them I had purchased over the years for failed or never attempted projects. The others I stole from lesser used closets, cabinets, and scary basement walkways. They were a hodgepodge assortment of various metals and I just spray painted any of the chrome ones gold. After messing around with the layout for a while, I eventually landed on using 9 hooks total. A part of me wishes they all matched, but I'm just telling myself it's quirky. Plus, my sensible side is elated at the $20 total for this whole project.       

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The bench I built using an extra unused board from our dining room table. I actually started this project on a whim, over a year ago, intent on making some rudimentary outdoor seating. Once I realized how expensive outdoor varnish was, and saw how perfectly it worked in the narrow entry walkway, I changed course. It just took me a full year to finally finish it, meaning it sat, smoothly sanded and unstained, until now. 

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The construction was incredibly primitive. I cut two 18" pieces from the overall length of the board for the legs, and spent under $5 on a cheap 2x4 for the middle brace. The placement of said pieces was determined in a completely form-over-function manner, solely based on where I thought they looked best... As a result, it turns out I inadvertently created an in-home seesaw wherein all unsuspecting victims who perch on the end are unceremoniously plummeted to the ground. Eek!

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Because the wall hooks and the shelf near the front door are a bit modern in their simplicity, I thought a more rustic approach to the bench finish would be a nice counterpoint. Plus it was made of the cheap earlier referenced framing lumber so there wasn't anyway I was going to get a clean and modern natural finish with Teak Oil. I used a combination of some on hand stains to get this dark, but slightly golden hue and I dig how it works with the whole space.  

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Progress in this little entry is moving quickly! In fact, if you follow me on Instagram you may already notice much of the styling in these photos is a departure from the more fresh and a little bit glam direction I seem to be moving in. I hope to be back soon with more of those updates!