Developing Construction Skillz

Recently I wrote about my quest to become the top Moderately Ambitious Handywoman at next year’s HGTV Spectator Awards (I think it airs right between the German ESPY’s and the Tween Choice Awards).

I’ve always been called crafty. But let’s face it, even for all the super-chic craft blogs out there, crafty still implies you wear cardigans with Santa Claus and leprechauns hand-emblazoned on the front.

Please shoot me if it comes to that.

Handy, on the other hand, makes you think of tool belts and furniture and general bad-assery.

So I want to be handy with some crafty fries on the side.

If you are in the same boat and looking to become handy, this Internet thingy is amazing: there are lots of awesome women showing off their approachable construction skillz on the web. And they write blogs for girls (or people) like us.

Try Ana White and she’ll lead you to others.  Also there’s that Pinterest thing. Doing a search for “funky pallet table” was quite productive for me.

It also really helps to buy a house next to a contractor (thank you, Chris!), and be friends with your own contractor (thank you, Aaron!) who both let you ask lots of questions and is willing to give demonstrations of mundane skills.

Here’s the first project I completed from scratch: $10 picture ledges from Ana White. They really did cost $10 each.

And then I made a table for our deck out of a pallet that conveniently showed up at our house. I don’t own power tools–only wood glue, so I could not have completed either of these without help from our neighbor Chris, who happens to own a saw and possess vast professional knowledge.

I need to find a board to fit the middle of the pallet table, but for now I’m pretending the opening is intentional.

I would love to hear about other web resources you’ve seen for do-it-yourself projects! In particular, I’m planning on building garden planters next…

Okay, off to hand-wash my seasonal cardigans.


12 responses to “Developing Construction Skillz

  1. Have you discovered Centsational Girl? A lot of good DIY handy projects. I’ve added several to my to do list but have yet to tackle any of them.

  2. When the Mister and I first met in Paris, we had to fix up our apartment in exchange for rent. I scrubbed, painted, and generally tarted the place up. For three months I slept on a foam wedge chair (you know, one of those S-shaped folding numbers from the 80s) on 4 pallets. To this day I can’t pass one without smiling, so to see your handsome table… well! I want to come over and eat aged Gouda and apples with you. I am so very impressed, you glamourous tomboy, you!

    • Glamorous Tomboy–that’s exactly what I’m going for! (As opposed to frumpy screw-driver lady.) You know, this means I’ll have a million projects next time you come up for a “Vay-caytion??” You’re simply too qualified to lounge around. It’s a real liability.

  3. YOu need to come over to our house more often. I think we have some old pallets in the garage

    • Purrfect! There seem to be a thousand pallet projects on Pinterest. I just bought a crow bar and a drill, so I think I can tackle the next pallets in stride.

  4. You’re too cool for me. Drats.

    • So all that time that I’m spending doing house projects is time you are raising a third child and home-schooling. Sounds pretty amazing to me! So retract that drats right now! 😉

  5. That contractor neighbor sure is a helpful fella, and I hear he’s super cute:)

  6. Pingback: Ikea Hack: Turning a Bed Frame Into a Table & Benches | momsicle

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