Monday, July 16, 2012

when crafting projects go bad

This is the story of how one of my crafting projects almost burnt down our new house.

Yes. You read that right!

I've been drooling over this style of project for ages:

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Can't be that hard, right? I could totally do that on my own. I consulted with my craftiest of crafty besties, and the next thing I knew, Jen and I were hauling dresser drawers off the side of the road, and building up my drawer stash for the project. Thank you Quebec for having moving day and for big garbage day collection. Free drawers! Oh yeah baby.

So we collected 7 drawers of varying sizes, all for my dining room wall. Paul wasn't to thrilled by the idea, but a little canoodling and coercing and he came around.

So I set to work:

I sanded the drawers and then I painted them:

Mental note... when a spray paint can says wear a mask, it's probably a good idea cause the fumes get pretty nasty after the 3rd drawer!

In fact, I tried spray paint and regular paint. Even though spray was more fun, regular paint worked better and in hindsight I would have just used good ol' regular paint but I thought that maybe it wouldn't stick to the drawer properly. 

Plotting design layout:

Thankfully Silvie came out to help me with this project and so she was there to help me with this step (and all the others prior to the big accident... don't worry, I'm getting to it. I'm such a tease, I know). Anyways, Jen had suggesting tracing the boxes on paper and figuring out the arrangement beforehand. She's a smart girl that Jen. And Silvie is a patient girl. Because we moved the boxes about quite a bit before we agree on this arrangement. 

Before I go any further, I'd like you to notice box 6 (the top right hand rectangle) because this is the guilty party. This box is responsable for our near downfall...

Choosing just the right look:

Paul keeps telling me that Laval has everything except Ikea. And he's right. Except that a bunch of crafting stores are closed on Sunday. WTF. Hello, crafty suburban moms? I don't get it. But I digress...

I started with scrapbook paper because there are just so many great scrapbook papers but ultimately bought bigger sheets because the seams were smoother. Plus I found some fun Euro stamp themed paper that I build my colour scheme around.

After measuring the paper we lined the boxes using regular old white glue and a ruler to smooth it out. 

Then, a day later, after Silvie left (just so we're clear who was and wasn't involved in the near disaster), Paul and I started hanging the drawers using wall anchors and screws. The measurements were tricky, mostly because my husband has this thing about things being straight (I’m more of an eyeball it measurement kind of girl).

Paul's got a level and measurements, and all that... 

And then KAH-BLAM! We screw into the wall, right in the middle top section and hit a wire. There were sparks. And it wasn't just any wire. It was the dryer wire, which is double the normal voltage. The drill bit is blackened and we're freaking out. The dryer stopped working, we immediately turned the fuse off and called the extended family, looking for advice and help.

Thankfully we are blessed with a very generous and handy cousin Mark, who came over the next day, to cut into our new wall and assess the damage. 

Alas, this is a story with a happy ending (of course it is because I wouldn't be writing it otherwise). The damage was small and easily repaired (read, we don't have to rewire the house). We now know that our wiring is ridiculously close to the gyp-rock. As in right behind it. So we will now proceed with caution EVERY time we go to hang anything on our walls.

And what happened with the rest of the project you ask? Well, I am tenacious and Paul is patient, and in the end, it was done:

Voila, final product:

For now I’ve decorated the drawers with bottles I’ve been collecting over the years. But I have a plan... Yes, I remain undaunted, even in the face of near catastrophe! The plan is looking something along the lines of option a:

DIY these "milk glass" bottles by swirling paint inside of bottle to coat
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Milk glass bottles. Probably just white so that they pop from the background but blend with the wall. I want colour but not absolute chaos!

option b:

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Or I'll tint the glass with a more see through look (again, probably in white)

option c:

simple and zen
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I could also use (alone or in combination with the other paint), simple white rice paper to recreate a look like what is above, but simpler.

At the end of the day, not only am I very thankful that our house is fine, but also that Paul wasn't hurt in the process. Really, it feels like while the incident was just a crazy case of bad luck (who expects the wiring in the middle of the wall)? I also feel like someone was watching over us because really, honestly, I could be writing a very different story today if we weren't so blessed.

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