Old Stereo Speakers Upcycled to Cat Tree

My inspiration for this upcycle was a double-decker cat bed made from an old suitcase that I saw a picture of. While keeping my eye out for a suitcase to use, I came across a set of mismatched beat-up stereo speakers on the side of the road. It was actually pretty interesting, because as I picked these up, the man who lived at the house came outside and told me to help myself to whatever I wanted (I also got a like-new artificial Christmas wreath). He then told me that he actually does “this” for a living, and proceeded to share the best nights to check out different neighborhoods and recommend an auction house if I ever decide to consign anything.

the crappy “before” pic I almost forgot to take

Despite having 1,001,001 projects waiting, and a few in progress, I got started on the speakers right away. It actually turned out to be a lot harder of a project than I anticipated! Part of it was due to my lack of certain power tools – a circular saw, in particular – and a real work table. I’ll be getting these things before starting anything else that requires sawing off 2x4s trying to cut a shape out of plywood.

As usual, I failed to take many “during” pictures. Steve helped me with the demo-ing, and that was the fun part. But I had failed to account for the fact that these weren’t real wood, rather a cheap particle-board material. The sides ended up falling off the smaller speaker, and it proved tricky to do any nailing or screwing without cracking a whole piece. But, I figured out that by relying mainly on L-brackets for support (and using tiny screws) I could make it work.

The top level was kind of an after-thought. I just cut a (rough) circle out of a piece of plywood that I had lying around and then used my staple gun to attach batting and then fabric.I sewed the pillows out of an old vintage sheet and hot glued a strip of velcro to the bottom and the surface so they wouldn’t constantly be falling off. I didn’t put a ton of effort into making everything look perfect – after all, this is just a cat tree, and it’s for my own home. But I think it turned out pretty cute, and it was definitely a TON cheaper than the carpet-covered cat trees you can buy in the store! Really, my only expense at all was the fabric and paint, which I already had, (and which barely cost anything anyway – the paint was from the mis-tint section, and the fabric was a remnant and an old sheet.)

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Lacy wall art from an old headboard

Happy 4th of July everyone!

This summer has been crazy busy, which seems to be the case with everyone. I’ve done a decent amount of junking/thrift, and a ton of online estate sale shopping – but haven’t had as much time as I’d like to actually work on projects. I’ve had decent luck selling my no-rehab-needed antiques/vintage goods (I just found out I actually made a profit my first month at the antique mall!) but I’d really like to get back to my true passion – making old things pretty.

We needed something new to hang above our couch, and since I couldn’t find anything I liked at Goodwill, etc., this meant it was up to me to create it. However….I’m not an artist. I have next-to-no skills in drawing, painting, things like that. So I had to be creative!

I thought of this old wooden headboard frame that I had snatched from the side of the road a while back. I’m actually not even sure if it’s that old, but it was in pretty rough condition, and it only caught my eye because of it’s pretty shape.

After some brainstorming, I decided to paint it this rusty orange color and then use it to frame some pretty decorative fabric. But when reviewing my collection of fabric/linens, I couldn’t find anything that would look quite right. I moved on to my stack of curtains, and when I found this vintage lace valance, I knew it would be perfect! I just used my staple gun to attach it to the back of the frame, and I ended up putting a dark blue fabric behind it to make it stand out better against our wall. I topped the paint with a brush-on poly, and then did just a bit of distressing.

I love how it turned out! If it were up to me, I’d rather that the seam of the curtain not show under the arched part, but that was the only way that the curtain would fit, and I don’t think it really detracts from the overall look at all.

(it’s not hung yet because I’m still deciding where exactly to place it and what else I want around it)

Stay tuned – I’ll be back soon (really!) to share the yet-to-be-seen outcome of my most ambitious project yet – a cat tree made from a pair of old stereo speakers!

Mini Makeover Monday Debut!

This week I’m starting Mini Makeover Mondays, where I’ll share a rehab project that took me 30 minutes or less to complete!

Eventually I’m hoping others will join me! If you grab the MMM button (or just link to my site) and let me know that you participated in MMM, I’ll post a  MMM recap each Tuesday and will list and link to everyone’s projects.

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So we’ve had these hooks hanging in our bathroom for a couple of years – I picked them up on clearance somewhere for a $1. They’re not hideous, but I was never in love with the look.

When I recently painted our bathroom purple (from yellow) I decided it was time to update this to match.

I spray painted it white, and then cut a piece of fabric to fit the top section. I applied it with Hard Coat Mod Podge and put a few coats on top, followed by an acrylic sealant.

Since I’m not including drying time, the project took about 15 minutes to complete! I like it so much better now.

I’d love to see what everyone else can “prettify” in less than 30 minutes!

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A special thanks to Power of Paint for featuring my chalkboard dresser on their site today!