Nicky Tobin Designs


April 2014

Recent Posts

  1. Shade-y
    Friday, March 07, 2014
  2. Tree Trimmings
    Wednesday, December 04, 2013
  3. Holiday Glitter
    Saturday, November 30, 2013
  4. Stuffed
    Thursday, November 21, 2013
  5. Tagged
    Monday, November 18, 2013
  6. Bed and Frame
    Monday, October 21, 2013
  7. Mellow Yellow
    Saturday, October 19, 2013
  8. From Matte to Finish
    Thursday, October 17, 2013
  9. Mid Century Clean Up
    Thursday, October 17, 2013
  10. Table-Gate
    Monday, September 16, 2013

Recent Comments

  1. Kathy Williams on Shade-y
  2. Jen Thomas on Tree Trimmings
  3. Bill Tobin on Holiday Glitter
  4. Lynn on Tagged
  5. Jenny thomas on Mellow Yellow
  6. Lynn Streit on Mid Century Clean Up
  7. Jessica Lucio on Table Cloth
  8. Jane on Mid Century Clean Up
  9. Jane on Table Cloth
  10. Jenny Thomas on Table Cloth


Tag Cloud


When rummaging, its pretty easy to find a pretty lamp, but to find a pretty shade is a another story. So many lampshades get thrown away because they're damaged or too dirty. Grab those shades out of the dumpster and make them beautiful again. Remove the old fabric and replace with yarn, fabric, beads, ribbons, or whatever you have laying around. If you're concerned about fire safety, choose drum shades with a wide opening.

Tree Trimmings

All I can say about these curtain ring ornaments is, "Awwww." I made them with pieces of an old broken Christmas decoration, and odds 'n' ends I found here and there.

Holiday Glitter

Old wooden curtain rings are a no-brainer for repurposely holiday ornaments. I dipped these in polyurethane and sprinkled them with extra fine glitter. Everyone needs a little sparkle this time of year.


I came across this beautiful bolt of vintage Christmas linen, gathered my crafting supplies, dusted off the sewing machine, and came up with these non-breakable ornaments. Sweet little gifts for friends and neighbors. 


With the help of a shaped paper-punch, I made these easy-peasy gift tags from old Christmas cards. Cool idea for price tags as well. Happy punching.

Bed and Frame

This headboard was another freebee on the side of the road. I painted it with some free "mistake" paint from the local hardware store. The consistency of the paint was really thick and hard to work with, but after I smoothed it down with heavy gage steel wool, it had a nice, smooth antiqued look. Then, I added the accent color in the back of the shelf to "modern it up."

The pillows and bedspread were made with leftover fabric from other projects. Thanks to my studio neighbor, Saskia Winter of, I was reminded how to load a bobbin, and thread a sewing machine. Once I got going, it was like riding a bike. 

Mellow Yellow

When I was first offered this table, I didn't take it because I thought it was beyond repair. It was stained, faded, and dented. I walked away, but couldn't get it off my mind. After a few minutes, I ran back, and luckily the offer still stood. I tried removing the stains with some sandpaper and was excited to discover as I sanded, the faded paint was lifting, revealing the original color underneath. I put on my face mask and got out the electric sander. The results were stunning. I even like how the metal shows through in areas. Finally, I finished it with about 6 coats of clear protective coating. Funny how furniture talks to you.

From Matte to Finish

This dresser was given to me in pretty bad shape. The veneer was scratched, stained, and chipped. After a careful sanding, I filled in the divots with wood filler and prepped for paint. I knew I wanted a smooth finish, but didn't want to pay to have it professionally sprayed. Instead, I used some leftover matte gray paint which dries to a smooth finish, then coated it with about 4 layers of polyurethane to give it durability. Now, no one can walk past it without touching it. Huh!

Mid Century Clean Up

I found this sweet chair in need of some TLC. It was covered in scuff marks and mildew. Since it was all on the surface of the finish, all it needed was a scrub with some medium gage steel wool, and a polish of wax.  I also removed the old upholstery which was literally disintegrating and replaced it with new batting and fabric. Amazingly, I found fabric almost identical to the 50-year-old fabric originally on the chair. Now it looks loved and cared for.


I sand-blasted and powder-coated this table over a year ago, and was never sure how to handle the minty-ness of it. When I came across the driftwood-colored outdoor fabric for the chairs, I knew it was just what the table needed to "tone down." For the tabletop, I salvaged a weathered wood gate from the junk yard, cut the planks to size, sanded the edges, and removed the slivers with coarse-grade steel wool. Now, the mint-green is the perfect shade.
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