Thursday, May 5, 2011

Garden Caddy?

Is is a caddy?

Yesterday was Wonderful Wednesday!  I had a pretty good haul, too, for the $25 I shelled out.  I got:
A wire frame wicker storage basket, a clay planter, a tiny clear glass vase, a dress and nightgown for Li’l T; a nightgown and jammies for N; new sandals, 5 pairs of shorts, 4 tee shirts, and a bathing suit for Jon; a pair of Tommy shorts for D; three cedar deck chairs; 

You can rest assured that THESE are gonna get a little special treatment soon!

and this thing.

I don’t really know what it is, or what it’s intended for; look at that weird angle on the bracket thingie.  

Strange, no?  Several of us looked it over at the store, just being goofy about what to do with it, and the more I looked, the more potential I could see.  Besides, it was only 45 cents :).
Since I’ve been so focused on the garden and flower beds, I could use it to shlep new plants back and forth from bed to bed.  Or to carry the tools, gloves, plant foods, etc. that I might need.  OR I could use it for tools, paint, sandpaper, yada yada, when I’m working inside.  Either way, it’s going to earn its keep, once I make it pretty.
I am really hung up on my brights right now...  there was no other option but yellow for this piece.  Krylon “Bright Idea” is finding its way into and onto a bunch of stuff lately - I first picked it up to make this little darlin’ stand out a bit more.

If it ever stops sprinkling (C’MON ALREADY!!!), I will get my little friend done, but in the meantime,  my carrier is looking better by the minute.  
It was pretty grody at first.  

Even after wiping it down pretty thoroughly, I can’t imagine that paint would’ve adhered, and I’d have had peeling fairly close to immediately.  TSP to the rescue! 

After disassembling the creature, I sprayed both of the wooden parts down and let them sit for about 5 minutes.  I could see and feel the difference as I wiped them off, and within another 5 minutes, I was ready to prime.  One frustrating coat of primer (windy much?), one dowel dropped in the dirt (grrrr...), and about 5 coats of the yellow got me this far.

Yes, I know that the middle of the tray isn’t painted.  That’s ok, see, ‘cause I’m tiling the bottom of the  tray with these.

I went to Home Depot to look for these, which I’ve been reading about on other blogs...

...but our store doesn’t carry them.  While I was looking, though, I found these.

Super cheap!  $3.20 per sheet, instead of the $10 for a sheet of the SmartTile.  They’re lightweight, which was crucial, and I happen to have thinset and grout left from other projects, so this was a no brainer.  Plus, look at that purdy iridescence!  Two sheets make the perfect length, but they’re two rows too wide.  Easy fix, just slice through the mesh backing and I’ve got some fun little rows of tiles leftover for another project.
Once the paint was all dry, I could break out this fun stuff.

What a concept - it acts as both adhesive (thinset) and grout.  Since the tile I got is so lightweight, I used the superfine edged trowel (it looks like a pinking shear cut its edge).  I applied an even coat of the adhesive, 

and just placed the sheets of tile as centrally as possible. 

There is a thin area around the edge of the tile that will have to be filled with grout, but it was not worth the effort to try to cut tile to fill such a narrow space.
Here she is... all done except for the grout, which can’t be scrubbed in until the original layer has cured for 24-36 hours, and I couldn’t wait that long to show her off!

I’m pretty pleased with the result, and the investment was so minimal!  $.45 for the caddy, $6.40 for the tiles, and the paint and grout I already had from other projects.  Less than seven bucks, and I bet I’ll use it for a long, long time.

What do you think?  I'm considering painting out the "handle" area with a glossy white enamel, to make it look like ceramic and to help it wear better.  Which way would you go?  Handle or no?

Anyway, tomorrow is Friday... and I am so ready!  Have a great day and I'll be back tomorrow with another so simple/looks so complicated recipe.


Cindy said...

What a transformation! You did a great job, I love it! Thanks so much for visiting and for your sweet comments. Hope you have a wonderful week. :)

Kim@todayismysome-day said...

Great find! I often pick up things that I am not sure what they are. I then dream and strategize what they can be used for. Some of them, I still don't know :) The "after" garden caddy looks great.