Friday, September 21, 2012

An Afternoon with My Mailbox

What can you do in an afternoon?

Here are a few ideas:

1.  Pin a few hundred pictures on Pinterest.
2.  Buy a Puppy.
3.  Bake a pie.
4.  Reupholster an Upholstered Chair Fit for a Princess.
5.  Make a Crafty Fall "Candle".
6.  Turn your plain-jane kitchen window into a Window Garden.
7.  Make some Ball Jar Soap Dispensers to give away as gifts...or just to keep :)
8.  Stare out the window at the incredible Airstream Trailer sitting in your neighbor's driveway and wish you had the guts to go ask for a tour.
9.  Make a Belt Floor Mat.
10.  Visit an apple orchard, then go home and make applesauce!

Well, though I have done those things before...and may currently be involved in #8...I have one MORE afternoon project to tease your brain with.

Last Saturday, I spent some quality time with my mailbox, and Voila!
 See how much we can accomplish in a day if we really want to?  Pretty incredible.
And perhaps slightly depressing, because most of my days do not involve a dramatic "Before" and "After" opportunity.

"Hey look honey!  Your sock drawer is full now!"
Yeah, nice try.

BUT every once in awhile we get the opportunity to do a quick little project that makes us smile.
This was one of those for me.
This is our little mailbox before.  Nothing cringe-worthy...with the exception of maybe the bird poop and the flowers on the right that I fried.
It was just "tired" looking and since the rest of our
(See our Weed-Pulling Party and Garage Shelving posts to catch up)
has just been about taking ridiculous things and making them look normal again, I was craving something pretty.  And the mailbox was an easy target.

I'll be honest with you, I was a little petrified to try this.
Because I've never seen anyone do this before.  And that generally terrifies me.

I could just hear the neighbors' taunting:
"Oh my gosh, Sallie, did you see that wacko girl out there sitting on a five gallon bucket painting dots on her mailbox?  Oh, and Helen says she has a blog, which she said is some kind of developmental disorder."

But despite my terror of neighborhood scrutiny, I am happy with the results of my insanity.  
Though Sally & Helen may still think I'm a loon.

Sorry, ladies.

If you're curious and might want to join my new club of mailbox painters, here's how it all went down:
1.  I removed the house numbers, bracket, mail flag and side-mounted plastic newspaper box.
2.  I painted the wood with Dutch Boy exterior white latex paint.
3.  Then, I found a graphic online to use as a stencil:
Graphic via Art Fire
This graphic is actually a vinyl decal that you can order through the link above.  Pretty cool!  

4.  I imported the image into GIMP, a freeware version similar to PhotoShop, and resized/edited/stretched the image to make it fit the space I wanted.  Then I printed it on normal paper.
5.  I transferred the image onto the mailbox using fabric transfer paper.  This is a thin paper with a chalky substance on one side that acts like carbon paper.  It's easier to find than carbon paper, though, and also comes in white, in case you need to transfer onto a dark surface. 
                   -I taped on my paper with the graphic, placing it where I wanted the graphic to be.
                   -Then slid the transfer paper underneath, chalk side down.
                   -Then outlined the graphic with a pen, to push the chalk from the transfer paper 
                       onto the mailbox.  Perfect!
6.  I filled in the outlined graphic with a grey/green paint, using a basic artists brush
7.  Joe gave the mail flag a shot of bright red spray paint.  This actually helped immensely.
8.  Then we put all the house numbers and such back on.
I'm kinda loving it.  Is it weird to be having a little love obsession with your mailbox?
It's okay, I'm also having a love obsession with this handsome hunk.  
I think that makes up for it, right?
Okay, I mostly just wanted to show off that picture :)
What a good Saturday afternoon project.  I'm not sure this Saturday will be so fun, but at least I'll get to go to the Farmer's Market in the morning!  I'm hoping to pick up some ingredients for the Minestrone Soup recipe from Centsational Girl.  Yesssss.  I tried her Potato & Corn Chowder recipe a few weeks ago, and it was delicious.  So I'm hoping this one does not disappoint!  

Oh, and good news in the yard!  Remember this?
It's GONE!!
Look at that flat-ish front yard.  Phew!  Nice work, Joe!

Well, I think I'll go back to looking at the Airstream trailer across the street.  
And maybe my mailbox :)
Have a great weekend everyone--and good luck on your afternoon projects!

~The Doodle Bug

I'm usually partyin' at these hangouts:

Friday Feature @ Redoux
Feathered Nest Friday @ French Country Cottage
Furniture Feature Friday @ Miss Mustard Seed
Show & Tell Friday @ My Romantic Home
Flaunt it Friday @ Chic on a Shoestring Decorating
Frugal Friday @ The Shabby Nest
Simply Creations Link Party @ Simple Home. Life
It's a Hodgepodge Friday @ It's a Hodgepodge Life
Spotlight Saturday @ Classy Clutter
Trash 2 Treasure Tuesday @ Kammy's Korner


  1. Nice job on the mailbox! Makes me wish I had wood around mine.

  2. So cute! What a fun transformation. I bet it makes your mailman smile everyday!

  3. Hi! Thanks for the great information you havr provided! You have touched on crucuial points! painted mailbox roses


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