I built this coffee table in an ongoing attempt to lower my Ikea to non-Ikea furniture ratio. Yes, this area rug is from Ikea, but The Great Pizza Box Fire of 2014 destroyed my non-Ikea rug, and I needed an affordable replacement! One step forward, two steps back…
I’m obsessed with all things Mid-Century modern, and when I saw this Co-Mod side table, I knew that I needed it in my life. But it was $345. And sold out. And $345. I felt like that needed to be mentioned twice.
Because I’ve mastered the art of assembling Ikea furniture (and tested many friendships along the way), I thought that I should try building this side table myself. I went to Home Depot, showed them a photo on my phone and was basically like, “HOW YOU DO DIS?” If you act like you don’t know what you’re doing (or you’re like me and you legitimately do not know what you’re doing), the good people at Home Depot will help you. They will tell you what paint brush you should use to apply clear coat. They will tell you what clear coat is. They will even cut your wood down to the exact size that you need at no extra charge.
1″x8″-10′ common board – 4 pieces that are cut 20″ long
(the top & bottom boards)
1″x6″-6′ common board – 2 pieces that are cut 14.5″ long
(the side boards)
Sand your boards. I used 150 grit sandpaper and sanded in the direction of the grain until it felt smooth. After your boards are sanded, wipe them down with a damp cloth to remove excess sawdust before staining them. This is probably something you should do outdoors in a well-ventilated area and not inside your 500 square foot studio during the only weekend it rains in Los Angeles. I still have sawdust in places I didn’t know I could get sawdust.
Stain your boards. Use gloves unless you want to have to keep explaining to everyone why your hands are brown for the next three days. You can use an old t-shirt, or if you’re a hoarder like me and can’t bear to part with your ‘I ♥ Haters’ shirt, you can get a pack of paint rags from Home Depot for $4 and use those instead. I used one to apply the stain to the wood and one to wipe off the excess. It dries pretty fast, so I was able to coat all sides without waiting. I only applied one coat, but you can apply more if you want it darker. Let the boards dry completely.
Apply clear coat. I applied it to one side of the boards using a synthetic paint brush. Give it a couple hours to dry, then turn your boards over and apply it to the other side.
Assemble your side table. Use two 20″ boards for the bottom, two 20″ boards for the top, and the remaining 14.5″ boards for the sides. Here’s a helpful diagram:
Nail the two top boards to the long edge of the side boards, and repeat on the bottom. Use two nails on each end of each board as pictured. I had someone hold the boards together for me while I hammered away.
Mount the legs. I set the legs 2″ from the edges and marked where the screws would go. I pre-drilled pilot holes and screwed the legs on with sixteen 3/4″ screws. Depending on what kind of legs you buy, you might have a different method for attaching them.
You can build your own Mid-Century modern inspired side table for roughly $78 (for just the wood and the hairpin legs, if you happen to have the other materials). You really can’t beat that price or the sense of accomplishment you’ll feel after building something with your bare, wood-stained hands.
Other things pictured:
Painted succulent pots designed by me (DIY tutorial here)
Task lamp from Target
Beyoncé print designed by me (sold on Etsy)
Bedding from Anthropologie
Bed from West Elm (discontinued!)
Partly to fund my Amazon addiction, but mostly because I hate myself, I picked up some freelance work designing eblasts for a cooking website during the holidays. I can feel my stomach eating itself looking at all this food porn right now…
Shi: I like this new Salvador film for the Hipstamatic app me: (looking at her iPhone) Ooh. Like Salvador Dali. Shi: Who? me:Salvador Dali. The artist? That’s his mustache. Shi: I don’t know who that is… I thought it was a bathing suit top!
I’m looking for a graphic design intern to assist me with overflow work. If you’re well-versed in Photoshop/HTML, don’t mind working with a bunch of female twenty-somethings, and kick ass in Taboo, please respond to our Craigslist ad here.
Needless to say, the guy who sent me his cover letter in Comic Sans will not be getting a call back from me.
I went to TNT at the Museum of Contemporary Art downtown last night. After work, I took the trolley from Old Town and got ogled by three different men at three different stops on the 9-minute ride. Public transportation is for the pervs! Chel, Christine, Anthony and I had a light dinner at St. Tropez. While the food was just okay and the hip hop music distracted from the French ambiance, we did, however, enjoy how our seats vibrated every fifteen minutes from the passing trolley buses—Yes, even Anthony enjoyed it. And yes, it’s been entirely too long since I’ve had a man.
We hit up MCASD afterward, and some of the artwork was just beyond me, but I did enjoy this one piece by Vhils made of sculpted brick wall with plaster and paint:
I also enjoyed the Stone IPA, the 9 o’clock Mexican and seeing three of our collective ex’s. Yeah, that wasn’t awkward.
Several street artists, including Shepard Fairey and Banksy, did public commissions around downtown, so def check them out if you’re in the area.
I’ve made cupcakes for a few of Kristin’s parties, so she asked me to make a Hello Kitty cake for her niece’s birthday. I can make cupcakes in my sleep, but I’ve never actually baked and decorated an entire cake before. I decided to make a practice cake first, just in case I was in over my head.
Isn’t this a pretty kitty? (That’s what she said.) Too bad this cake won’t stay fresh till next weekend! I’ll have to make another one on Friday, and now I’m left with a Hello Kitty cake that I’m not going to eat… How weird would it be if I showed up at my uncle’s retirement party with this thing?
While vacationing in NYC five years ago, I managed to get myself and Pammie lost in the city. We got off the train when I realized we were going the wrong way and found ourselves alone with Milo Ventimiglia at an otherwise empty subway stop. Seeing him in person was like hearing the Beatles for the first time, and I was rendered speechless. I got on the subway without asking him to father my children, and it has been my #3 regret in life ever since (don’t ask me what the first two are—I’m taking them to my grave!).
I loved taking the subway everywhere, and I die a little each minute I’m sitting in traffic at home in California. In memory of my trip, I’ve made some NYC-inspired magnets, complete with my old maps that got us lost in the city. Hopefully they will be of more use to you on your fridge than they were for me in New York! Buy them here: mayanrocks.etsy.com
Thanks to the lovely Chel for photographing everything in my shop!
By the end of this month, I will have attended three baby showers and two weddings this year—none of which are my own. But I’m not bitter. Maybe a little tired of explaining to my grandma why I’m not married with children, but not bitter.
Making diaper cakes is not nearly as fun as making babies.
Oh So Beautiful Paper featured the wedding invitations I designed for Chel on their website. No big deal ;) I couldn’t be happier if they were invitations to my own wedding! Actually, let’s not get carried away now…
Raechel and Alex’s DIY wedding invitations are all about two of my favorite things – music and kraft paper! Raechel worked with her cousin Marion to design the invitations, incorporating Raechel and Alex’s shared love of music throughout the wedding stationery while using a typewriter font and copper brads for a slight vintage vibe:
Check out the rest of the feature here and additional work in my portfolio.
I had a craftastic evening with the bride-to-be and her bevy of bridesmaids. I finished the wedding invitations while the girls worked on the centerpieces. Check us out—designing invitations, hot gluing sticks together (or in Shi’s case, her hair), living in a personal hell I call diet and exercise in order to fit into our dresses… Being a bridesmaid is serious work! It’s a good thing I love this broad.
Just received the final version of the cover of my wedding invitations. Thanks so much to the talented Mayan for designing the whole thing!! 143!
I tried to capture Chel’s vintage style while incorporating everything she wanted—layers of sheet music, lace, typewriter font, and her wedding colors, pink and brown. The invitations will be printed on cream linen cardstock. I can’t wait to see how they turn out :)
Pammie, Shi, Anthony and I went to Chel’s house last night to help her with wedding stuff. Chel asked me to design her wedding invitations, and I couldn’t be more honored :) She has 300 guests and is trying to keep the wedding costs down. It’s a good thing I work for lychee sake and tator tots.
The Cake Boss asked me to go out to some bar my friends were spinning at, McLovin’ texted me at an unholy hour, and I even had a brief exchange with Il Postino last night. When it rains, it pours I guess. There’s no where in the world I’d rather be than with these crazy bitches, though. God forbid I miss conversations like this…
Anthony: I was texting Chel about your website, and she got really annoyed because I kept calling it your “page”… Chel: It’s called a blog. Stop calling it that. Anthony: Whatever, I’ll call it her pagina if I want to. Chel: Oh, is that what you were calling it? Page in spanish? All this time I thought you were texting me pagina. Like vagina with a p!