Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Patchwork Cupboards Project

One of my favorite little projects in our new apartment (or new-to-us-since-summer-2011, but it's still so much a work-in-progress that I'll think of it as our "new" apartment awhile longer) has been dolling up the two small cupboards we use for dish storage. The cupboards mark the entry to our tiny kitchen, and I wanted them to pop with color.

This is what the cupboards looked like when we moved in:
For the first six months or so, I left the cupboards "bare" so that the dishes were visible in each of the wood-framed panes, thinking that since our dishes are all pretty colorful and since I had lined the cupboards' inner shelves with green contact paper, the effect would be pretty, but instead, we could only see the dishes that were right along the front of the shelves and it just didn't thrill me.  Next I attached just big rectangles of pink strawberry-themed oilcloth behind the cupboards' doors so that every pane of both cupboards showed the pink strawberry print.  "Blah!" to that too, but I lived with it until I figured out what I wanted to do.  And the answer should have been obvious to "Pretty Little Rough Patches" herself, of course, but it took another few months for me to think of it:  I finally used a bunch of different colors and patterns of oilcloth to create patchwork cupboards. 
I had already had the green and blue ginghams and the pink strawberry oilcloths, so I looked on etsy for a few more prints, hoping to find a sample/lot-style listing so as not to have to pay separately for a bunch of pieces, and the ModernJune shop came through:  For only two dollars, I got a wide variety (of my choosing) of colors and patterns for my project:  Pink roses on white, yellow gingham, red cherries on yellow, pink and white polka dot, yellow orchids on black, red gingham, dahlias on orange. . . .Awesome variety at a great price. 
I attached each piece of oilcloth to the back of the wood frames with little dabs of hot glue.  I tested a corner a small scrap of oilcloth first to make sure it wouldn't damage the wood, and it peeled right off after it had dried, so no worries.  After an hour or so of arranging, cutting, and hot gluing, I had finally finished the cupboard project, shaking my head at myself the whole time as I wondered this hadn't been the obvious choice all along. 
The small two-tiered shelf on top of the cupboard at left had been a happy three-dollar Goodwill find in 2010, and I recently finished redoing it too.  When we moved here, I decided to keep it on the kitchen counter and sawed off half of the top shelf to make it fit around the window, but then I realized the cupboard door above it wouln't open if we stored things on the top shelf.  Measure twice, cut once.  :)  I moved it to the top of one of the now-patchwork cupboards and covered the front, back, and right side with green gingham oilcloth and the left side with black gingham oilcloth.  It now holds a few flowers and cookbooks.  The space left by having sawed off part of the top shelf perfectly fits my beloved vintage Daffodil vase (another great Goodwill find) too, so it all worked out.  

I still need to find artwork for the side of the cupboard at left, opposite the die-cut coffee, iced tea, and chocolate milk (the three things Mike and I drink the most) signs, and I want one more drink-themed sign (and have one in-mind) for the open space under the milk and tea ones, but that's piddly.  That, then, at long last, concludes the Patchwork Cupboards Project. 

25 comments:

Lisa said...

A great solution, Val - the patchwork
looks very cute, just right.

Putting oilcloth on the whole shelf - must have been a little tricky!

Val said...

Thank you, Lisa. :) I barely remember covering the little shelf. Maybe I'm blocking it out, but I think I hot-glued it.

Lisa said...

You got that idea in your head, and you ran with it!!

Draffin Bears said...

Happy new year to you Val.
The patchwork on your cupboards is such a great idea and it has made your kitchen bright and cheery with all the colour and pretty fabrics.

hugs
Carolyn

Val said...

Thank you, Carolyn. :)

FlowerLady Lorraine said...

Wow, what you have done is so happy and colorful, so you Val. A great idea that you followed through with and are now enjoying. GREAT JOB.

FlowerLady

Val said...

Thank you, Lorraine! ♥ It's coming together here, one project at a time. You know how that is, I know. :)

Amy said...

I have to tell you....that you were quite inspiration in my decision to paint my kitchen purple and teal. (It was the original mustardy/earthy yellow from when we first moved in years ago. The builder just picked a 'main accent color' for each house in my subdivision...and I got yellow. My least favorite color, for petes sake...haha...but no more!)
Happy Monday, Val!

Betsy Adams said...

Very nice, Val... You are quite creative. I love all of your colors. They brighten the room. Thanks for sharing.

Hugs,
Betsy

Val said...

Thank you, Amy and Betsy. :)

Amy, that's funny about your colors: I had lavender and aqua together in a room in my first "all-to-myself" apartment. I'm glad you changed it to what you wanted. :)

Stephanie F said...

So pretty! I love your creativity :)

Now I want to get some patches and start decorating my home!!

asmplelife said...

Val, I love your color choices!!! Your apartment always looks so cheery to me. What a happy place.

Your patchwork cupboard looks fantastic, btw!

Annabelle said...

I love the bright colours - makes my kitchen seem quite dull. Clever idea. x

Val said...

Stephanie, Cheryl, and Annabelle: Thank you so much. It was a fun project. :)

Patrycja Photography said...

Great and interesting post. I like it.
I also invite you to my blog. ;)
Yours. Have a nice day.
 
You can also find me on the fanpage and keep track of my work:
https://www.facebook.com/pages/In-another-light/413836138693856?ref=stream

Kathy said...

Looks great Val!

Val said...

Thank you, Patrycja and Kathy. :)

racheld said...

Charming and whimsical and so nice to keep company with, from First Cup of the morning, to the last click of the light.

I thank you so much for joining LAWN TEA, and am so glad to meet you---I've just been immersed in your sweet wedding story, and smiled all the way through at the descriptions of your perfect green day.

I hope you'll drop in soon again---I've joined your own list of followers, as well, so as not to miss a stitch nor a smile.

rachel

Val said...

Rachel, thank you. :) It was such a fun and sweet little wedding gday, yes. :) ♥ Thank you for following too--It means a lot to me.

Trudy said...

Your cupboards look so sweet now. I bet you smile everytime you look at them : -)

Val said...

Thank you, Trudy. They really do make me happy. It's the little things, as you know. :)

Kim said...

I absolutely LOVE how this turned out. I also like lots of color surrounding me- just makes you happy :) Beautiful job!!!

Val said...

Thank you, Kim! :)

daiseedeb said...

Your home is just so adorable. What a cutie pie you are! ; )
d

Val said...

Thank you, Deb. :)