How to Make a Rustic Gathering Basket

Hey, there! This is Cher from Designs by Studio C with another super-easy DIY project! I know most of you are in full swing with your summer gardens and this project is perfect for gathering all of those delicious veggies you’ve been growing! This awesome little basket is constructed out of pallet boards, wire mesh, and jute rope…

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What You’ll Need:

  • 3 pallet boards
  • ¼” galvanized wire mesh (aka Hardware Cloth)
  • Jute Rope
  • 1-1/4” brad nails
  • Wood Glue
  • Sandpaper (80, 120, 220 grits)
  • Drill with an 11/32 bit (or a bit smaller than the diameter of the rope)
  • Stapler and staples

Pallet boards are rough by nature so start by giving them a thorough sanding starting with the 80 grit sandpaper, then the 120 grit, and finishing with the 220 grit.

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I cut the boards for the sides of the basket at 12” and the boards for the ends of the basket at 8” – you will need two of each for each basket.

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Make a mark on each end at 4” in from the sides and 1” down from the top. Drill the hole in each end for the handle. Assemble the basket frame using glue and 1-1/4” brad nails. The end pieces will overlap the side pieces.

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Cut the wire mesh for the bottom of the basket. I made cut the wire four squares wider than the bottom of the frame on each side, and cut a notch out of each corner. I stapled the mesh to the bottom of the frame.

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Fold the sides of the mesh over the outside of the frame. I used a hammer to help flatten the mesh, then I stapled the mesh in place.

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The handle is made by crocheting a chain with the jute rope. Make a beginning loop, then draw the rope through the loop making a chain the desired length.

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Cut the rope and pull the end through the last loop to knot it. Thread the ends of the rope through the hole drilled in the ends from the inside, then knot the rope on the outside.

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That’s it! Super easy, right?

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The wire mesh makes it easy to rinse the veggies right in the basket because some of us (pointing the finger at myself) can’t wait to eat them! Fresh garden veggies – yum!

If this post interests you, here are a few more that may interest you as well:

 Build a Rustic Basket|Rustic Crate and Wine Bottle Lighting|Rustic Sign using an Ammo Box Lid

How to Build a Wooden Ice Chest

Hi, there! It’s Cher from Designs by Studio C back with another fabulous project just for you! If you’re like me, you normally run all of your errands one day a week and with summer fast approaching, it is a challenge to keep groceries cool while you’re out and about. Have I got an easy project for you to build…

I like to use the inexpensive foam coolers to put all of my cold or frozen items in while I am running errands. Of course, it doesn’t take long before those coolers are destroyed by other “stuff” (for me it is lumber or building supplies) or by the kiddos, so I am going to show you how to build a wood box for the cooler to fit into! This way, the cooler will stay upright and the box will help keep it “cooler” longer!

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Materials:

  • 1 – 2’ x 4’ sheet of ½” plywood
  • 1-1/4” brad nails
  • 1 set of small hinges
  • Wood glue
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint or Stain and sealer

I used a small foam cooler from Dollar Tree for this project, and I have another cooler that is a different shape. With that being said, the coolers come in different shapes and sizes so there are no exact measurements given for the plywood pieces.

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Start by measuring the overall height, width, and length of the cooler without the lid. The cooler will fit snugly in the box but not so tight that it breaks! Cut the pieces of plywood as follows:

  • 1 – Bottom at overall length minus 1” x overall width minus 1”
  • 2 – Ends at overall height plus ½” x overall width
  • 2 – Sides at overall length plus 1” x overall height plus ½”

Now measure the overall height of the top (because we already know what the overall length and depth are) and cut the pieces as follows:

  • 1 – Top at overall length minus 1” x overall width minus 1” (this piece will be the same size as the bottom)
  • 2 – Ends at overall height plus ½” x overall width (these pieces will be the same width as the bottom)
  • 2 – Sides at overall length plus 1” x overall height plus ½” (these pieces will be the same length as the bottom)

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That wasn’t too hard, right? To assemble the box, run a bead of glue along the shorter edge of the bottom and position one of the end pieces over it. Secure in place using the 1-1/4” brad nails, then repeat for the other end. Run a bead of glue along the side edges of the ends and the bottom, and position the side on top securing in place with the brad nails. Repeat for the other side.

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Check to make sure the cooler base fits snugly inside.

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Repeat the assembly process for the top. Place the lid on the cooler, then place the lid on top of the box.

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The wood box can now be stained or painted however you’d like… I used grey chalk paint from a project I was painting at the same time I built the box. Mark the position for the hinges and install them on the back. (I forgot to photograph this step but you get the idea!)

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Now you’ll have a place to keep cold or frozen items in the car that will look nice and (hopefully!) not get destroyed too quickly!

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If you like this project, here are a few other simple projects you may like:

How to Build a Recycle Bin | Build Easy Serving Trays | Build a Wine Bottle Gift Box

How to Paint Rusted Metal

Hello, friends! I’m Cher from Designs by Studio C to share a few tips on how to paint rusted metal. Rust is formed by the reaction of iron and oxygen in the presence of moisture, and eats away at metal. If you have a few metal pieces such as a wheelbarrow, metal hook, or metal planters that are really rusty, they can be saved and fixed up – I am here to show you how!

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The project I am using as examples is my wheelbarrow which has quite a bit of rust on it! I started by scrubbing the pieces with a scrub brush and soapy water. The brush will remove the dirt that may have accumulated on the piece as well as help loosen some of the rust. I forgot to take a photo of the wheelbarrow before I took it apart but trust me, it was a mess!

If there are any holes in the rusted piece, the holes can be patched by using a product such as Bondo! Check out my how to use Bondo post on my blog today! Bondo is a compound that can fill holes, scratches, or large dents in metal (as well as other materials).

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It wouldn’t hurt to give the pieces a good sanding with sandpaper before using primer. Start with 80 grit, then work your way to a finer grit (maybe 100, then 150). Wipe away the sanding dust with an old rag or t-shirt, then apply a coat of primer. I normally use Rust-Oleum’s Rusty Metal Primer… I like the coverage and have never had a problem with rust coming through the primer or paint.

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Once the piece is thoroughly dry (wait at least 24 hours), a coat of spray paint can be applied. Spray a light coat with sweeping strokes and let it dry. Apply a second coat for better coverage. I also like to use Rust-Oleum’s spray paint products – especially 2x Ultra Cover spray paint! It is durable, has great coverage, and holds up really well! I painted my trailer with the Rust-Oleum spray paint a year ago and it still looks like new! If possible, wait at least 24 hours between coats, then another 24 hours before use.

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If the project has many pieces, like my wheelbarrow, it can now be reassembled! That was pretty easy, right? Have any rusty projects that are ready for a new life?

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If you like this post, I have a few others you may be interested in!

rewire-light-fixture build-new-drawers diamond-drill-bit

Rewire a Light Fixture to Use a Cord | Replace Drawers in an Existing Cabinet
Cut a Hole in a Plate or Glass

Frozen Party Supplies – Candles

I usually focus on the party FOOD, but to really round out a party you want to take a few moments to think about the decorations too!  Setting the table is what rounds the party out!  I’ve been focusing more on the little touches this year!

create snowy frozen candles to decorate with using epsom salt and mod podge

I came up with a ton of fun projects that are snow based, I can’t wait to share them all!  Snow balls, Trees, etc…  And today adding a snowy effect to candles. It’s SUPER easy and looks great!

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No Frozen party is complete without some snowy decorations.  And Candles are always a nice touch!  So I bought a bunch of simple white candles, some Mod Podge and Epsom salt to get started!

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Brush the mod podge on the long candles

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Roll them in the epsom salt until they are completely covered.

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Do the same thing with the squatty candles too

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And another roll in the epsom salt…

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And they are all done and ready for the party!  In fact my kids love them so much we still have them decorating our house!  I will say they don’t burn too well, the narrow ones leave a funny smell that my husband doesn’t like.

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How to Replace Wiper Blades on the Car

Hello, there! This is Cher with Designs by Studio C. With the arrival of Spring and the rainy season upon us (depending on which part of the country you live in) it may be time to change the blades on the car’s windshield wipers. Never done this before? Let me show you how easy it is to replace wiper blades on the car!

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Let’s start by finding the correct sizes of wiper blades for the car… Have you ever noticed the books near the wiper blades in the Automotive section of the store? This book is where you will find the correct sizes for your vehicle’s make and model. Find the make of your car (in my case, Ford), the model (Escape), then the year (2005). This will give the correct size you need. Generally, there are two numbers (yes, you will purchase two different wiper blades) because the driver’s side blade is always longer than the passenger side blade. I’m not exactly sure why but my guess is that the longer blade clears a wider area for better driver visibility. Make sense?

Make sure to read the instructions on the package. Most of the blade arms (the part that is attached to the car) are the same but there are a few that are different. The package will show how to use an adapter that is included in the package if it is needed.

Remove the existing blades by pulling it down so that it unhooks from the arm. The blade arms will “hook” onto the center part of the new blade. Make sure to firmly snap it in place (you should hear it “click”) – I learned the hard way and stood on the side of the highway in the dark and pouring rain because my wiper blade came loose. It was not fun and I won’t make that mistake again!

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Most cars also have a third wiper blade on the back window. For the model and year of my car, I cannot find a pre-packaged replacement blade. If you can’t either, don’t fret… I’ll share a little secret for replacing that blade.

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Buy the shortest and cheapest replacement blade you can find. Remove the rubber strip from both the old and new blades. Use the old strip as a template to cut the new strip to length, then install it in the brackets on the blade. Seriously, it is that easy!

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This is a necessary part of the maintenance of the car… Don’t let the wiper blades get torn up like the one on my back window (eek!) before they get replaced!

If you liked this post, I have a few others you may enjoy:

replace-power-cord-tools custom-cover-tools table-saw-tlc

Easily Replace a Damaged Cord on a Power Tool
Keep Your Power Tools Protected with Custom Covers | Table Saw TLC

How to Install a Water Line for a Refrigerator

I’m Cher from Designs by Studio C and am thrilled to be the DIY contributor to I’m Topsy Turvy!

My boyfriend, Matt, and I have been remodeling a house affectionately known as “The Rebel House” named for the street where it resides. We are at the tail end of the remodel, finally, and needed to install a water line from the sink plumbing to the refrigerator for the ice maker. This is such an easy process and so I created a tutorial on how to install a refrigerator water line. The instructions apply to replacing an existing water line, as well.

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What You’ll Need:

  • Refrigerator Icemaker Kit
  • An Adjustable Wrench or Pliers
  • Utility Knife

First and foremost, if an existing water line is being replaced, turn off the water to the line. It will be located under the sink! More information may be included on the instructions that are included in the icemaker kit, so make sure to thoroughly read those first!

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Carefully move the refrigerator out from the wall, and remove any kickplates installed on the lower part of the cabinet (on the floor). We built the cabinets in the Rebel house using furniture legs to elevate them off of the floor, and the kickplates had not been installed yet. If the line is just being replaced, unscrew the brass nut on the valve for the old icemaker line under the sink, and remove the line.

I removed the existing line from the refrigerator by unscrewing the brass nut holding the water line in the valve. The line is generally located at the lower right edge of the back of the refrigerator. It would be easy to add a coupler to tap into the existing line but doing so adds an extra place for a leak to occur. Plus, that part of the line would be located under a cabinet and it may leak for awhile before being detected thus ruining the floor or cabinets.

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The icemaker kit will come with a water line, a coupler, a new valve, and a few brass parts such as nuts and ferrules. Remove the parts from the packaging. Install one end of the line on the refrigerator by threading the line through the nut, adding one of the brass ferrules to the line, and screwing the nut in place on the refrigerator valve. Do not “crank” the nut on the valve with a wrench or pliers. This can cause a leak. Once the nut is hand tight, a half turn with a wrench or pliers should do the trick! Do not cut the line, yet!

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Loosely run the line under the cabinets leaving enough slack so there is no tension on the line. This will keep the line from pulling out of the nuts at the valves, and make it easier to move the refrigerator out from the wall in the future. I drilled a hole in the bottom of the cabinet under the sink using a ½” paddle bit so the line could run through and attach to the cold water line.

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If the line is an entirely new one (where a line has never been installed before), a valve will have to be installed on the cold water line under the sink. The icemaker kit includes a valve and a clamp. Position the valve on top of the cold water line with the clamp on the bottom. Tighten the screws. Then turn the handle on the valve counter-clockwise to pierce the line. See the installation instructions for more information.

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Cut the line to length; add a nut and a ferrule to the end of the line then tighten the nut on the valve. (Remember – after the nut is hand-tight, use the wrench or pliers to turn the nut a half turn!)Turn the water on and check for leaks. If there are leaks, tighten the nuts on the valves a half turn at a time with a wrench or pliers until the leaking stops.

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If the line is just a replacement, Follow all of the same steps with the exception of drilling the hole in the cabinet and adding the valve, then screw the nut with the line on the existing valve.

So there you have it – a tutorial on how to install a refrigerator water line! It is really easy to do and is a quick installation job! If you have any questions, contact me at cher {at} designsbystudioc {dot} com!

I have a few other posts that may be of interest: Build Crown Molding Shelves, How to Drill Pocket Holes in Mitered Corners, and How to Use a Shelf Pin Jig.