Getting Crafty in Isolation

Raffacle getting Crafty

It’s been a slow start to wedding season this year as restrictions are still in place for all Irish people to stay at home, except in very limited circumstances. So, while we have this down time, we’ve decided to put our creativity into creating handmade bespoke furniture pieces.

As a lot of you already know, we are in the process of saving to buy our own home. So we decided ‘Why not create furniture pieces that we would love to have in our future home?’ It’s a great time to experiment with the styles that we like and really see what we can create with materials that don’t cost an arm and a leg! So we got crafty in isolation and it’s been really fun.

STARTING SMALL

Girls who can relate….. storage in the bedroom for make up, hair products, nail varnishes, face creams, etc. can get a bit disorganised if you’re anything like me… All the wonderful products you’ve spent your hard earned money on end up scattered all over the floor and appear on random shelves in a bit of a mess! Well, Liam noticed this craic going on and decided to create a gorgeous small shelving unit ideal for housing all of these items and to save his sanity in having to share a room with me!

Liam used 2″x 1″ pine wood for underneath and in front the MDF shelves , Pallet wood was used for the sides and for the top. Once together, the top was painted in white and the rest in charcoal chalk paint and then finished with a clear coat of furniture wax. I absolutely love this piece and it has made my life much easier in terms of navigating my beauty products. Also, I think you’ll agree it’s very cute look looking in the bedroom.

BRANCHING OUT

After creating the bedroom unit, it was official Liam had caught it …. not Covid-19….but a bug for woodworking. So what would be the next project to get stuck into? Well, the hall in our rented accommodation looked a bit bare so this seemed like a good area to revamp.

The sun was shining, so working outside was ideal. There wasn’t a full design idea in place for the unit, this piece kind of evolved in to what you can see as the finished unit. Liam began by creating the frame using 2″ x 1”s. He then filled in the nail holes with wood filler and gave everything a good sand. After he acquired more pallet wood , Liam crafted it together in an ascetically appealing way on the top. Seeing how this looked it was easy to decide that the front of the drawers should have this same palleted effect.

Once all together, the pallet wood was sanded down and waxed using ‘Antique brown’, which really enhanced the beautiful grain patterns in the wood and gave it a gorgeous dark tone. The frame was painted ‘Parchment Paper’ white to compliment the darker palleted wood. The final touches, adding pewter metal handles to the drawers. Now a staple piece of furniture that we can include in our future home.

WHY SHOULD LIAM HAVE ALL THE FUN?

I’ve been watching Liam create these pieces from the sidelines, and I’d share some of my creative suggestions. At this stage, however, I was feeling inspired to get hands on which a project of my own…..But what? Then it came to me.. We have a small pine table out in the garden, that we didn’t really care about. It spent a year or so outside, neglected in the rain, sleet and snow. I wanted to give the table a new lease of life so I rolled up my sleeves and got stuck in…

The pure joy I got in bringing this small table back to house worthy furniture was very satisfying. No screen time, just the task in hand. It was another beautiful day in Co. Laois, so with sun glasses on I first started by washing the table. There was a lot of muck around the bottom and plenty of spiders!! After the table dried out I started to sand every part of it. The old varnish was peeling off the top and the whole table had become a bit warped from being left to the elements in the garden. But a bit of elbow grease soon brought it back to life and I could really see potential.

Next it was time for me to wax the top. The wax filled in all the chips and marks in the wood and gave it a polished, smooth finish with a dark staining effect thanks to the ‘Antique brown’ wax. After that, I painted the legs and structure with ‘Parchment Paper’ white. Finally once the paint had dried, I rubbed in the clear furniture wax with a dry cloth. This acts as a protector to the wood and paint.

Et Voilà, the piece was completed and I’m totally in love with it. Upcycling may have become my new hobby. I thoroughly enjoyed transforming the old forgotten table into a beautiful home decor piece.

WHATS NEXT?

The next task being undertaken at the moment is our very own bespoke corner office unit. Liam started by sketching out a 3D model of the piece. The wood was sourced from our local Sawmills and then crafted into the table frame. The top wooden panels were then assorted into an interlocking design.

Next up it will need to painted and treated. Make way for the new HQ / idea factory for Raffacle. Keep an eye on Instagram for updates.