About Jen Panguluri

Posts by Jen Panguluri:

Hand-Formed Cement (Over Glass) Vases

 

DIY concrete vases formed by hand over inexpensive glass vases

These vases are made by covering inexpensive glass vases and glass bottles from the recycle bin with anchoring cement. They are surprisingly easy and fun to make.


I happened on the idea of using anchoring cement to cover objects such as the glass vases when I was making my DIY Cement Replacement Sofa Legs for IKEA and Other Brands.  When making these legs, I mixed up very thick batches of cement.  I noticed that the wet cement could be hand formed for a short period of time because it got thick and pliable, kind of the consistency of silly putty, and then it hardened quickly.  It was only in that pliable form for a few minutes.  So when I was making the sofa legs, I got in the habit of making little free-form cement bowls from the left-over cement mix. Then I began to think about all the things around the house I could cover with cement, and I decided to try cement-covered glass vases and bottles (before moving on to the furniture 😀 ).
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Live Edge Tree Slice Side Table with Legs made of Lamp Pipe

 

DIY Live edge tree slice side table with standalone legs made of lamp pipe, brass flanges, and brass ball feet.

This live-edge tree slice table is made from a horizontal cut of the trunk of a mulberry tree.  I made the legs, my new version of DIY industrial pipe legs, from steel lamp pipe and brass fittings.


DIY tree stump table mulberry wood grain on table top
DIY industrial pipe legs made of lamp pipe and brass flanges with brass ball feet
mid-century-styling-DIY-stump-tree-slice-side-table-with-industrial-lamp-pipe-legs-w_flatDSC_7625ab

As I mentioned in the “About” section, I originally became interested in making furniture in order to furnish our three-season sunroom. I intended to rehabilitate the sunroom from being a storage area, and before that when the kids were little, a playroom.  (I say “intended” because the sunroom is now my workshop studio.)  I was looking for furniture that I could make, having limited skills, tools, and budget.  The first type of furniture that caught my eye was the live-edge style.  “Live edge” refers to furniture where the natural edge of the wood is incorporated into the design of the piece.  It was popularized by George Nakashima in the middle of the last century.  Live-edge furniture can be deceptively complex, with emphasis on craftsmanship, sanding, and finishing.  Because of the limitations I mentioned, I am making simple live-edge tables made of a “slice” of the tree, with legs.  It is an uncomplicated style, rustic and elegant all rolled together!

The Live Edge Side Table project has six main parts:

  • Finding, Choosing, and Drying Wood
  • Removing Bark
  • Optional: Leveling Tree Slice with Router
  • Sanding and Finishing
  • Making the Lamp Pipe Legs
  • Attaching the Legs to the Tree Slice

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Easy DIY Patriotic Crate Side Table

DIY patriotic red, white, and blue side table made with a crate turned upside down and wood legs.

This easy-to-make rustic side table is made of a wooden crate turned upside down and simple wooden legs that are attached inside the crate. I had fun decorating it with a red, white, and blue theme in honor of the Fourth of July holiday here in the States.  Decorated to your liking, it could be a lovely side table for use in a child’s bedroom, in a nook by the recliner, or even as a plant stand next to a sunny window.


 

DIY crate side table red and white crate with white star.
DIY furniture side table crate.

 

This is an easy DIY furniture project that can be made in less than a day, and that includes paint and glue dry times!  Here we go.

The Easy DIY Patriotic Crate Side Table project has four parts:

  • Cut, sand, and finish the legs
  • Paint and distress the crate
  • Attach the legs to the crate
  • Make the star, paint, and attach to the crate

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Rustic Modern Pedestal Bistro Table

DIY bistro table. Rustic modern style with industrial pipe and weighted bowl base.

This DIY bistro table is just the right size for one or two people and would work great for a small dining space or to create a cozy nook in a wide open patio, deck, or yard. The pedestal base is made of an industrial galvanized steel plumbing pipe and a wooden serving bowl, turned upside down and weighted with concrete for stability. The table top is a store-bought pine panel.


DIY patio furniture bistro table
DIY Bistro Table table top view with tea set
base of pedestal base of DIY bistro table

This is the first dining table that I have made, and I’m happy with how it turned out. The table is standard height, 30 inches high, and the table top is 24 inches diameter. The bowl that I used for the bottom of the base has a diameter of 12 inches. When I was “designing” the table, I scoured the internet for information on how wide the base should be relative to the table top diameter to reduce the possibility of the table tipping over. What I found out is there are no hard rules on the ratio of the base to the table top. But, generally, the base diameter (what sits on the floor) should be at least half the diameter of the table top. Variables that affect the ratio, while I don’t understand it all, include the weight of the base, the weight of the table top, and the height of the table top off the floor.

Why am I telling you all this? The bowl that you use will probably be different from mine, with different dimensions and may hold more or less weight in the form of concrete. My table seems very stable, so you will probably be okay if you stick with the dimensions that I used. But if you want a larger-diameter bistro table (for instance 30 inches diameter) or you want a bar height table (36 inches), I suggest getting a bigger wood bowl to use in the pedestal or install a “foot” underneath your bowl to increase the base diameter.

The Rustic Modern Pedestal Bistro Table project has six main parts:

  • Preparing the wooden bowl for adding concrete
  • Weighting the wooden bowl with concrete and finishing the bowl
  • Painting the plumbing pipe and flanges
  • Cutting flattening cleats and attaching them to the table top
  • Sanding and finishing the table top
  • Assembling the table

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How To: Fix the Springs on the Saggy Sofa

How to Fix the Springs on the Saggy Sofa DIY

I’m starting another category, this one called “How To.” If you missed it, I also have an “Easy” category which includes projects that are exceedingly easy.  The “How To” category will include stand-alone skills and tasks that are useful in furniture-making, repair, makeover, upcycle, redo, decor-making, and the like.  In this post, I show how I fixed our very saggy sofa by rehabilitating the springs.


How to fix the springs on your saggy sofa!

When I was contemplating starting this blog, I knew I would be making some furniture.  I also had another theme in mind, which is–Learn to love what you have.  Or maybe better stated–Make what you have something you love.  So what about this sofa?  I liked it well enough, but it was in rough shape.  We had this sofa for several years, and over time I noticed it was getting “soft.”  Finally it got so soft, I had to do something about it because it was starting to feel like I was sitting on the floor while sitting on the sofa.  Being not one iota curious about why the sofa was sagging, my solution was to cut a piece of pegboard and put it under the seat cushions.  This was good enough for a few years.

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