Category Archives: DIY

Milk Crate Bookshelf

I recently completed a pretty easy project using some old milk crates I bought at a garage sale for four dollars each.


I didn’t take a proper before picture because I was too gung ho about getting started, but here they are after my initial spray of it. The blue splotches were my doing. The rest is the same as when I purchased them. I sprayed them down messily with two tones of blue spray paint left over from older projects, and two cans of white spray paint. Here is the result:


They didn’t seem very sturdy at first, so I twist-tied the shelves together and will likely screw them up against the wall once I find a permanent place for them.

Side note: I found this immensely stupid looking thing at a garage sale last week and had to buy it. Because what would a bookshelf be without a ceramic poodle wearing glasses from the 1950s?


Here’s a close up of the paint job on the back. You can see the original plastic color cracking through in the right corner. I painted over peeling paint from the last owner’s refinishing job to give it a bit more of a worn look when the paint inevitably came off.


Anyway, it was super easy project and pretty impossible to mess up. If you have extra spray cans lying around from old projects, this is definitely a project worth your while!


Metal Cart Fixins.

Well, I’ve been waiting a good long while for the opportunity to post this project I’ve been working on. My mom bought the cart in the early 80s when she got her first apartment. Since then it has ended up sitting in our garage collecting rust and other unsavory friends (spiders). Here’s what it looked like before:DSC_2858

Aaand some close ups of the damage.DSC_2859



The bottom was the most concerning part. When the cart was wheeled around the screeching was so loud that it echoed across our entire block. The bottom of the chrome legs were in especially awful shape.

DSC_2867My first step was to pull out the palm sander. I purchased my palm sander of choice from Harbor Freight a couple years ago and it is has been a godsend for smaller projects like this where I don’t want to pull out the full-sized sander. Here’s the one I use, but there are tons of different ones to choose from.

There were a lot more tough rough spots than I anticipated so a lot of rounds of wiping, sanding, rinsing, and drying ensued.



In progress. You can see all of the hidden rust I had to work with. After sanding the top shelf, I dismantled the cart and sanded the bottom and middle shelves.


Then I focused on the legs and wheels, which needed some serious TLC. I decided to try something new out on the rust. It cost 8.99 at Harbor Freight. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I needed something to submerge the wheels in because the rust was hard to reach.


Here’s what they looked like before:


Here’s my lovely bucket and velcro ties rig…

DSC_287624 hours later I took them out, turned them over, and the rust really DID start coming off. It ended up taking a bit longer than the instructions said, but it definitely ate off the rust and (surprisingly) didn’t mess up the plastic wheels.

I couldn’t get a good after picture that really showed how well it worked on the legs, but I was satisfied. The rust had eaten through the chrome finish in some of the rougher places, but the rust remover ate through to the original metal. So, there are some areas where it is no longer chrome, but it is much, much better than the original rust. I sprayed these exposed areas with Rust-Oleum’s Clear Enamel to prevent rust. DEFINITELY worth the four bucks and absolutely crucial to anyone doing similar metal projects.

Then I moved back to the shelves.


I picked Krylon’s Ocean Breeze as my color. I also used a gloss enamel over it in order to protect it and give it a cleaner finish.

Finally, I put the cart back together. Despite the fact that the wheels were rust free. the plastic wheels were still yellowed and contrasted with the rest of the clean looking colors. I sprayed them with Rustoleum’s Metallic Spray. (Also,in this picture you can see the drastic difference that the rust remover made on the legs. Pretty cool, eh?)DSC_2881


Finally, I bought chrome magnetized hooks to put on the side of the cart, which, despite how cheap and easy they were to put on have to be my favorite outcome from this project. They just gave the cart that little extra bit of personality it needed.

And finally here it is, loaded and ready for my kitchen.



Thank you guys for checking out my blog. Feel free to comment with suggestions, questions, or anything else!




I am the Air King

DSC_2838-1024x683 (1)

After a month of hard work, the Air King reigns again! And it was some serious work.

The bolts were initially rusted through so separating the fan cage from the motor and blades. When I finally got it off, it was worse than I could have imagined. Oily build up was up to 1/4 of an inch thick in some places!

But, when I finally got it off the blade and motor underneath were actually a lovely tan color. In fact, I didn’t even paint the blades. The color pictured below is what I found after scraping off all the grime.


I started off by taping and bagging stuff up that I didn’t want to get paint on. Luckily the pretty chrome strips on either side of it were removable so I had one less thing to worry about. I used electrical tape on the plastic Air King logo because it had a better grip than painters tape. I also used electrical tape and plastic shopping bags around the blades and areas of the motor I did not want to paint.


As you can probably see, I used spray paint. I ordered the paint on Amazon because I couldn’t find anything like it in stores. I ended up with Rust-Oleum’s Gloss Blue Sky. It was definitely a pain in the ass. I ended up using three cans of paint because of how much area I had to cover and the very thin coats I was forced to use to avoid bubbles.

After that I cleaned out the electrical box inside the fan. I used a can of spray air and pliers to adjust wires that were loose. I ended up just taping a ton of stuff in place and crossing my fingers that it would work, which was certainly nerve wracking after pouring hours of work into the thing.

And it did! It was all surprisingly very simple and straight forward. By golly, the thing diffuses air like it was built yesterday. And while it still weighs a good 40 pounds or more, I couldn’t be more happy to lug it into my window every morning.


And of course, the necessary before and after picture: