Lattice re-do

Judy had some lattice under her deck that needed fixing. Also the “gate” on the right kept falling out.

I used 4×4 posts along the ground to give some stability. I pounded in some rebar anchors to keep them in place. I bought some vinyl grey lattice and attached it. I put hinges and a latch on the gate.

A nice 3 hour job in the sun.

Custom closet cabinet

Angela requested a built-in wardrobe cabinet for her closet:

She wanted it centered so that a couple of barn doors can be added in the future. So there is a 3 foot wide cabinet with a 3 foot wide space on either side. She also wanted shelves inside right up to the ceiling. And of course some rails for hangers.

It took me a couple of days to build it and paint it, and half a day to install everything. To save time and material on the upper cabinet, I built the upper part “on site” using the side panels and interior shelves to hold everything together. But the bottom section was a pre-made plywood drawer box.

Cedar Barn Door

Misty hired me to make a barn door. She had some 1×8 cedar planks. I edged them and planed them before gluing them together, but as some weren’t perfectly straight there is a bit of a rustic feel. It is 7 feet high and 5 feet wide.

It was a bit sad to paint the nice cedar white, but that is the colour that was needed. Painting cedar doesn’t always work as some of the natural oils bleed through, but with a coat of Kilz paint and 2 coats of cabinet paint, it looked alright.

She ordered an 11 foot track. Installing it was not straightforward thanks to odd stud locations.

Rustic Greenhouse Shelves

I put together a greenhouse for Donnie awhile ago, and she needed some shelves for her plants.

We went with rustic. I chopped up some free pallets and made a table and some shelves that would fit in the small hexagonal space.

I spray-stained them as well.

Live-Edge Shelves

Josephine asked for some live-edge shelves for DVDs.

I found some nice birch planks on Craigslist:

Then they needed a little more dressing up/contrast. So after planing off the back edge and sanding them a little bit, I cut them to size and applied stain to about half of each board. Then I varnished them, which unfortunately yellowed them a little, but they still looked good.

To install them as floating shelves on a concrete wall, I inserted 1/4″ lag bolts into the wall, cut off the heads, drilled matching holes in the back of the shelves, and slid them onto the bolts. I put a bead of silicone along the back too.

Deck sanding and coffee stains

Marnie hired me to sand (part of) her deck. Over the phone I quoted 1-2 days. When I showed up and saw the tiny thing, I thought I had it beat. But sanding was very slow.

In the past I had sanded a deck and it had been easy. The only difference was that I had spent a day or two pressure washing and using stain stripper. At the time pressure washing seemed like a waste of time…maybe it wasn’t. I decided to try the stain stripper. It got a bunch of gunk off (a layer of stain?) but not all of it. I was back to sanding…

I rented a drum sander. It did in 10 minutes what my belt sander did in 4 hours.

There was still a lot to do by hand – deck boards aren’t level – and I had to sand between them by hand as well. But it turned out ok.

Now for the coffee part. The homeowner chose a semi-transparent stain called “Coffee.” I stained it the following week on a warm day. The fence got a quick coat too.

Backyard deck and steps

About 6 weeks ago Carolyn called me about building a deck. I had a wait time and the price of lumber was going sky high so we bought the lumber right away and left it in piles until I was able to get to it.

I spent a week building. First I replaced the old stairs. I made them almost exactly the same except I added some posts for a railing.

Next I started on the deck. I worked my way away from the house in sections so that my customers could still access the backyward without climbing over framing. It is 12 feet wide by 25 feet long.

Lastly I added railings and steps.


I worked on a few different gates this week…

This one is for a daycare; I spent a fair bit of time with the customer designing with new, simple, and robust materials. (Of course with 2x4s going for $20+ each it doesn’t mean it comes cheap!)

Then I made a new one on the side of the house as well. This one did not have caster support like the previous ones, so it needed a crosspiece:

Then I installed a metal security gate for Shelley. She measured and ordered it and it is a great product from ULine. Luckily the wall studs were in a pretty good place so there wasn’t much modification needed. It folds up and swings out of the way into a small 6 inch bundle when not in use. (It is not for security, but for safety.)

Flatlay Countertop Re-do

Pomi asked me to re-do the kitchen countertops in her rental house as they looked terrible and she was listing it for sale. There were 2 layers of laminate and the second layer was peeling off (and was not done properly). The edges had fallen off too and one had been fixed with tape.

The problem was that she needed it done ASAP before a showing. So I checked with my supplier and there was only one 5×12 sheet available, a solid grey colour. So we went with that.

I also made splashes which finished it off nicely and add protection from future water damage in the sink area.

Office Partition with doors

Get Well Physiotherapy hired me to divide the office/reception in half. Basically they wanted a private space behind the reception area. (We experimented with one-way (mirror) window film but it didn’t work too well, so went with frosted film.)

I measured the space and made a drawing:

First I built a frame out of 2x4s:

Frame integrates with existing shelf and desk

Next I worked on the doors. I made them out of 1x4s and 2x4s.

Lastly I installed the doors with double swing hinges.

Finished partition