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The Home Depot

Style Guide: Summer 2012

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The how-to community

Life's always a little easier when it comes with instructions. Here's step-by-step instructions for creating some of the great looks throughout this edition. For more great project advice, visit our How-To Associates in the Community Forum.

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Painting Outdoor Pots

How-To

Turn a terra-cotta pot into a colorful complement to your flowers. Follow these step-by-step instructions to crate a charming harlequin flower pot.

Skill Level
Novice
Time
24-48 hours (including primer, paint, and polyurethane drying times)
  • Step 1

    Prime the pot with a primer appropriate for the material. Follow the instructions on the primer container. Then, create a harlequin pattern on your pot. Draw the pattern in pencil, or you can purchase ready-made stencils in the paint department of your local The Home Depot store.

  • Step 2

    Tape off the lines with painter's tape. Trim off the excess tape with your hobby knife.

  • Step 3

    With a paintbrush, paint over the tape to create your diamond pattern. Don't use too much paint, though, or it will bleed through the tape.

  • Step 4

    Once the paint is dry, switch the tape to the outside of the pattern, and fill it in an artist's brush.

  • Step 5

    Then simply remove the tape, touch up any imperfections and enjoy! If you plan to set the pot outside, seal it with a water-based, exterior grade polyurethane. Use two or three coats.

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Frame for Bathroom Mirror

How-To

Dress up a mirror with a custom made frame. Our instructions will take you through all the steps of this easy DIY project.

Skill Level
Novice
Time
4-6 hours (including paint drying time)
  • Step 1

    Measure the length and height of your mirror to determine how large of frame you need to create

  • Step 2

    Select the trim you think best matches your bathroom or interior space. Consider combining multiple types of trim such as chair rail and wainscoting to get a layered look.

    Purchase moulding from The Home Depot where an associate can cut it for you for free.

  • Step 3

    Measure your mirror and materials again to ensure a proper fit. Select the wood you would like to use on the outer frame. Then measure the wood that you will want to be your outer piece. Mark the wood measurement on the outer edge of the wood. You want the corners of the molding to meet at a 45 degree angle, so keep that in mind when you're marking it.

  • Step 4

    Cut a 45 degree angle cut using the miter box and saw. Use the mark you made as the outer part of the cut then cut inward. Cut the 45 degree cut going the other direction at the other end. Continue measuring and cutting all four sides.

  • Step 5

    After cutting all the wood, use a high-grit sandpaper to soften the edges. Then use wood glue to attach the four pieces together.

    Do NOT worry if they don't fit perfectly - you can use paintable caulk to achieve a professional and seamless look.

  • Step 6

    Prime and paint the frame. Being in a humid environment like a bathroom, we suggest priming and painting both sides of the wood. Consider using spray paint to achieve a high gloss finish, or consider interior paints such as Martha Stewart Living specialty finishes in a metallic gold as an alternate way to add a luxe, gilded look to your frame.

  • Step 7

    Arrange the pieces to mount to your mirror. Glue the middle of the back of each strip of moulding. Install by putting your wood onto the mirror.

  • Step 8

    Fill any small gaps in the corners with caulk. Once that's dry, paint it to match.

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Frame for Bathroom Mirror

How-To

Impress your guests with a delightful outdoor entertaining buffet. Follow the step-by-step instructions for this one-day DIY project.

Skill Level
Difficult
Time
4-6 hours (including drying time)
  • Step 1

    Grab all of your supplies from your local The Home Depot. You'll need 10 pieces of wood to make the entertaining buffet. Select the PDF icon below to download a full list of materials.

    The wood can be cut to size at your local The Home Depot or you can do it yourself with a power saw, carefully measuring and cutting each piece to fit.

  • Step 2

    Assemble the sides, top and bottom pieces to make the frame. Ensure they are accurately put together using a level or t-square. Carefully apply wood glue on both sides of where pieces will meet before joining. Then, fasten together with wood screws, making sure to quickly take off any excess wood glue that is visible.

  • Step 3

    Next, place the back top, middle, and shelf pieces, making sure all are flush and square. Install and fasten to the frame using the same steps and materials used in step 2.

  • Step 4

    Center and then attach continuous hinge onto front plywood piece with screws provided from the hinge. Make sure the other side of hinge is fastened to the bottom portion of the bottom piece of the buffet. Test the hinge to make sure the front piece closes and opens properly.

  • Step 5

    Next attach eyehooks and S-hooks a few inches from the inside edge of the front piece and on the inside sides of the buffet frame. Install your chain onto the S-hook, making sure it is secure. Having extra chain at this step is fine, as you can cut and change the length if it is too long. At this stage, test all parts to ensure the front piece works efficiently.

  • Step 6

    Carefully inspect where you'll be putting the two square dowel rod bottom stops, ensuring they will stop at 90 ° when the front piece is folded down. Before fastening them to the front, make sure they will be placed a few inches from the edges of the front piece. These bottom stops are important; they will help the front piece support weight from whatever is being placed on it once it is opened for use.

    Then inspect all areas of the buffet, sand down rough areas and be sure to fill any screw holes or gaps with wood filler. Any remaining wood glue can be sanded, leaving you with a smooth professional-like finish.

  • Step 7

    Apply paint or stain of your choice to all wood surfaces. You may choose to take off the metal hinges and eyebolts at this step, or mask off to ensure the metal pieces are unaffected. Make sure whichever stain or paint you decide to use is exterior grade and has a durable finish once it is dry.

    Most stains will need a top clear coat of exterior polyurethane or similar clear-coat. If you choose to paint the wood surfaces, a primer is recommended to ensure a professional and even-looking finish for the final top coat.

  • Step 8

    After your paint or stain is dry, apply the top latch and back mounting clips to ensure the entertaining buffet is secure and will stay in place. The type of screw or mounting system you will need depends on the wall surface where you're placing the buffet. Always refer to the mounting system instructions to determine if they will work.

  • Step 9

    Mount the assembled and completed outdoor entertaining buffet, checking it with a level after installation to make sure that it will be fully functional and safe.

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Painting outdoor area rug

How-To

Express your style by creating a colorful painted outdoor rug. It's an easy DIY project that will brighten up any outdoor space.

Skill Level
Novice
Time
24-48 hours (including paint and polyurethane drying time)
  • Step 1

    Clean the canvas with a lint remover. Lift off all pieces of lint, dust, and stray threads from the front of the drop cloth. Tape out a design on your rug. Use stencils, stamps or a computer image to produce uniform designs that can be easily reproduced.

    Don’t forget to plan your design in advance so your big decisions (and mistakes) are made on paper!

  • Step 2

    Apply the base coats. Use a 2-inch brush to paint the entire surface of the drop cloth. Allow it to dry overnight.

    If necessary, apply a second coat and allow the canvas to dry overnight to keep brush strokes smooth and even.

  • Step 3

    Seal the canvas drop cloth. Allow the design to dry at least 24 hours before you apply a clear polyurethane finish. Apply at least three coats of polyurethane, allowing 12 hours of drying time between coats. Be sure to brush all the way to the edges, so you seal all the exposed paint surfaces.

    Once you start making these DIY outdoor area rugs, it will be hard to stop. With a little practice and some imagination, you’ll discover inspiration for colors, textures, and designs inside as well as outside your home!

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