Feature Friday: Sawdust and Paper Scraps

Along my blog journey, I get to meet so many fascinating and fun new friends and Sandra with Sawdust and Paper Scraps is one of them.  I met her first last year at Blissdom and then she came to Haven this year and we also got to hang out at the Bella Rustica market and even shared a room together at the small farmhouse we stayed in with Donna.  It was a blast, getting together with those girls.

Bella Rustica

(me, Donna, Sandra at Bella Rustica in TN)

Sandra is one of those friends that you’d love to hate, but she’s so darn nice that you can’t.  She is oozing with DIY talent and I wish I had a bit more of her know-how to get things done.  And I mean beautiful things!  I know how to do quite a bit, but Sandra takes it to the next level.


She is a super talented DIY carpenter and would put most men to shame.  I’m going to first share pics from her old house in Illinois.  She did a bunch of projects in that house and then they  moved to Tennessee, where she is taking on that house too, one room at a time.  This craft room was her old house, but wow what a craft room. She built this island from scratch, I do believe.


Also, in her old house, the garage got a huge Sandra makeover with this built-in.  How cool is this?


The girl has some crazy mad skills with the power tools and I’m so impressed with what she pulls off, all by herself.  Her hubby is not even handy.


She also built this entertainment center.  Incredible and so detailed.  I can’t even imagine tackling something like this.


Also, in her Illinois home, she added this wainscot all the way up the stairs and down the hallway.  Just this alone adds so much architectural details to her home.  This is way more than what me and my dad did to my house. Although I’m happy with mine too, I will say.  Sandra just has the talent and know-how to take it to the next level.


Like this wall, see what I mean?  What I really want to highlight is how adding these architectural details to a home really kicks it up a notch.  The impact is huge!

kitchen after

Sandra painted her kitchen too while she was in that house and I’m not sure what else she might have done in there, but it’s pretty.



There’s that built in with her sectional sofa in place.  Pretty room!


Her old house also had a his and hers office space, which yes, Sandra built.  Are you jealous of her talents yet?


And this one I really, really want to do in my house.  At the bottom of my main stairs going up to the bedrooms, one of these newel posts that Sandra did would look SO good.  She shows step by step how she did it.

newel post

And here’s the after.  I’m hoping that by bragging on her and showing off Sandra’s wonderful work, she might come and visit me and build me a newel post too. Would that be too much to ask?  Smile   How gorgeous  is that?

Now, we are going to move on to Sandra’s current home.  Wait until you see this next magnificent project.  You will be over the edge with jealousy on this one.


Sandra had a huge master closet and built it out with custom drawers and all the bells and whistles.  I think it took her a long time, but wow, what a closet.


Check out the lighting, the floors, the hanging rods and the drawers.  Amazing!


And here’s silly Sandra playing around in her new fun closet.  I’d be giddy too about that one.


And Sandra’s latest masterpiece is the built ins in her library space at her current home.  It is one beautiful wall of shelves!  And check out that planked ceiling too.


Sandra, you are just too cool for words.  I’m not even worthy of wearing a DIY toolbelt next to you, my dear, but I’m glad to be friends with such a talented woman.

I hope you all got inspired over seeing Sandra’s home and what a difference all these added features can make to a home.  Sandra is making over her house, one room at a time and I hope she gets to stay in this one for awhile.  It’s beautiful!  Stop over and say hi to Sandra, she would love to meet you all.

The Handbuilt Home giveaway winner has been posted and emailed here.

The Persephone vintage pillow giveaway winner has been posted and emailed here.

- Rhoda


  1. So jealous! It’s amazing!

  2. Super, mad talent! I am going to add this to my list of reads! Thanks for sharing. So impressive!

  3. Rhoda, I am so impressed with Sandra’s skills. Amazing!

  4. Rhoda!..Sandra’s previous and current home is jaw dropping phenomenal…Her work and creativity is masterful…I am totally in awe!!…Thanks for presenting her homes…I so enjoyed it..made a great start to my day!

  5. Oh my lord!! That is truly amazing! Does she do this stuff for a living?? She should! Very, very talented, and that is an understatement.

  6. Wow!! I don’t even know what to say….she has talent!!!

  7. Wow! That’s so impressive!

  8. Wow! She has done some beautiful work. If she comes to your house, be sure to send her over to mine too! I have lots of things that I’d love to have built. Great job, Sandra!

  9. My Stars!!! I can’t build shelves, but I’m itching to decorate them! That’s the fun part for me!

  10. Amazing! She is soooo talented.

  11. I have no words… WOW… I mean WOW. What she can do is amazing! And to be able to do it in her own home.. to have that kind of space.. WOW. It was all beautiful!
    Thanks for sharing her crazy skills!

  12. Marc Jones says:

    Wow!!!!!! Beyond adjectives, this lady is phenomenal,an expert cabinet maker! I loved everything and would think she could start a business with these skills,there are few that do this work anymore and so excellently! I think she likes white! My favorite was the island (that wasn’t white) in her craft room.loved that pop of color! All in all,stupendous !!!!!!!

  13. Goodness! I knew, but I didn’t KNOW, how seriously talented she is. I had the extreme pleasure of being in a “Hangout” with Sandra & Brittany (Pretty Handy Girl) yesterday on Google+. Sandra is a hoot! I’ve invited her to every single Hangout I might ever do. But this talent? Exceptional.

    The only question is: How do I get her to come to California. For an extended ‘visit’. 🙂

  14. WOW! My husbands builds furniture, I showed him this post and he was sooooo impressed. I pointed out to him that Sandra’s husband is not even handy. Her work is absolutely beautiful.

  15. Wow! That is quite impressive! Thanks for introducing Sandra to us!

  16. I am so ready to take a carpenter 101 course…esp after seeing this post.

  17. Ummm, wow that is the closet motherload. She is one lucky lady!!! I miss thrift treasures. I LOVE that link party and now I’ve lost so much blog traffic. Will the party come back?


  19. WOW is right! (And can I just say that her old master closet is about the size of half of my house!) She’s amazing. I’m definitely not afraid of power tools, but they just don’t seem to create the same kind of stuff in my hands. 😉

  20. Sandra is one amazing lady! That closet is what I want mine to be when it grows up. 🙂 Let me know when she comes to your house, so I can kidnap her for a few (dozen) projects around here!

  21. I wish I had the talent she has, I can’t even read a ruler correctly. Lots of Ladies out there that are very talented at what they love to do. I’m amazed at all you and your family have done in your home. The tile in your kitchen I thought you had it done professionally. Really good job!

  22. OMGosh, both homes are gorgeous! And yes, I’m green, green, green with envy of all that talent Ü Rhoda, I hope she comes and visits you and builds that post for you Ÿ

  23. The girl is MAD talented! I watched the craft room work with a sinners envy. haha. j/k I think. Then if i’m not mistaken the people that bought the house didn’t want the island!!! What is wrong with those people I ask. I can’t even imagine.
    Yes! Love the attention to detail she has. She is super talented and I love reading her blog.

    I bet you could get her to hop on down to Georgia and build you a stair post.

  24. OH MY WORD! Rhoda you made me blush… and then cry a little because you are so incredibly complimentary and all the comments were too. I can’t even tell you how much reading sweet things about me means to me. (Did you catch that?)

    I can tell you this — you just earned yourself a newel post beautiful!

    Thank you all so much for your kind words. AND be on the look out for Rhoda’s new newel post because I think I just publicly promised her one! Love and smooches to all … and to all a good night! <3

  25. Liz VanKirk says:

    I love how you posted a post about Sandra! She does have an awesome talent with building. We are always in awe of what projects she does & how she builds them. I really want to take a building class after seeing her projects.

    Maybe just maybe!

  26. I met Sandra at Blissdom 2011 and you are right: she is the silliest, greatest friend one could ever hope to find. And then she goes and builds all kinds of stuff and just makes all of us jealous 😉 I can’t wait to see the newel post she comes and builds you! 🙂 hehe

  27. Brenda Kula-Pruitt says:

    That is incredible talent!

  28. Good ohmygosh grief… I knew she was good but to see it like this one after another… totally blown away.

    I can also attest to how warm and wonderful this gal is in person. She’s America’s sweetheart and her heart truly is the size of her closet. 😉 I LOVE this girl! Well, both of you. 🙂

    What a wonderful post, Rhoda! Sandra, I’d like to preorder you book please… (HINT HINT) xo


  29. That was one talent filled post. It was just one fabulous room after another… WOW! That library was stunning. The finish work was all just stellar. Thanks so much for featuring all that goodness in one place (:

  30. You are so right: I would love to hate her! But I’ll take your word for it that she is too nice to hate! Such talent…and very inspiring. Wait ’til I tell my DH that I have power tools on my wish list for Christmas. (And maybe add a little talent in as a stocking stuffer!)

  31. She is a Wonder Woman! I am truly amazed at what she can accomplish!

    Art by Karena

  32. Hi Rhoda!!

    WOW!!! Beautiful workmanship!! She is very talented. I love the lighting in the old house and that walk-in-closet is gorgeous!!

    Have a great weekend!!

  33. I’m loving that craft room and closet! I wish I could build things like that!

  34. is there a material take off sheet for the entertainment center

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