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hey there! I'm monica 

I pride myself on making amazing style and design accessible for everyone, regardless of location, budget, or ability! My design philosophy is rooted in authenticity + attainability - If I can do it, you can too! My work has been featured in countless publications, but I take the most pride in homeowners that have been personally inspired by my DIY ideas and have tried something in their own homes!

learn more about ME + MY BIZ

If you follow me on Instagram, then you know that we have two Bernese Mountain Dogs, Pennlyn and Brynn.  My daughter even has an IG account dedicated to our dogs (you should check it out-the cuteness is amazing!) With 2 BIG dogs and 4 kids, our house can get a little crazy, so this summer I’ve been really focusing on projects that are both functional AND fit with the style of our home.  I feel like so many things either look good or are useful, but not both.  I decided I was tired of finding dog food and water dishes all over my kitchen, so I created a DIY Pet Feeding Station for Pennlyn & Brynn.

DIY Dog Feeding Station_East Coast Creative

You could easily go out and buy a feeding station, but I wanted to fully customize one to fit my style, and plus, do I ever buy something that I can easily DIY? I think not!

To Build This Feeding Station:

1- Cut a 2×10 pine board down to your desired length (you can even ask them to cut it at Lowe’s for free)

2-Add 4 legs.  I used these cute mid-century legs that I also picked up at Lowe’s.  They’re actually longer legs, but I just cut them down to the height that I wanted (using a chop saw) and attached them with screws.

3- To make the holes for my dog bowls, I used one of my bowls as a template. I traced around the edge with a pencil and used my jig saw to cut out the circle, being sure to cut about 1/4 inch inside the line, so the bowl wouldn’t fall through. The circle doesn’t have to be perfect- this is a great beginner level DIY project, my daughter helped me a lot!

 4- Give it a light sanding and it’s ready to decorate!

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My daughter and I were building this together, so I didn’t take step-by-step pictures, it’s so simple that you don’t need them, but here’s all of our supplies in a messy pile!  This is real life people… lol. I save all the perfectly styled supplies for TV episodes!

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I’ve just recently finished up a family room makeover (I’m sitting in it right now and I LOVE it! I’ll show you guys soon!) and I wanted to carry the vibe of the family room into the feeding station… maybe that sounds a tad weird, well not maybe, definitely…it sounds weird, but hear me out. My family room, kitchen, and breakfast nook are all open to each other, and the feeding station will be seen from all 3 rooms, so I want it to look like it belongs… well, as much as dog food and water can belong.

I have a lot of cacti and plants in my family room, so I wanted to use the little V shape that looks cute on cacti sketches and doodles. I also wanted to try something I’ve never done before… I used Painters® Paint Pens to create a pattern under wood stain! 

I grabbed a scrap piece of wood to play around with this technique. Using a white Painters®, I doodled some patterns.

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I covered the piece of wood with Rust-oleum’s Wheat stain and the results were awesome! The painted areas resist the stain just enough to create a really authentic, subtle looking effect.  I knew that’s what I wanted to try on my feeding station and about 100 other projects actually! I want to use paint pens and stain on everything now and I can because they’re actually acrylic paint and can be used on almost any surface, wood, pottery, glass, fabric, metal etc…

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I used my paint pen and painted on little V shapes all over the top surface of my feeding station.

A few tips for using the Painters®.  Shake them really well before using and depress the tip in on a scrap piece of paper until the paint begins to flow. I also did a few test Vs on paper just to get them nice and even.

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I just went with organic placement, nothing too perfect or aligned.

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I applied the stain directly over the painted areas

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and then rubbed the stain with a rag, as you would with any stained piece.

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The stain wipes right off the pattern, making it visible!

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Once that was dry, I used some leftover paint from my pantry door to accent the sides and give the legs a little paint-dipped action.  I sealed the whole piece with Annie Sloan’s clear wax so that it’s waterproof because my dogs are so messy!

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The girls are already using it and I’m honestly shocked and how much neater they are! The bowls aren’t all over the kitchen and I think the raised height is just right for them, because they’re getting so much less food on the floor!  Insider tip: Ikea plastic placemats are perfect to put under a feeding station. They protect our floors from sitting water and they look cute too! 


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We’re puppy sitting on of Pennlyn’s puppies this week, and she loves trying to be a big girl and use the feeding station too!  
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Now that my feeding station is completed, I really am dying to try this stain resist technique on other projects.  It would work with colors other than white and I’m thinking a black Painters® Paint Pen with a weathered grey stain could be amazing!

If you want to try it out too, you can pick them up at Walmart, Target, AC Moore, JoAnn’s, and Hobby Lobby.  Painters® is also having a monthly contest between now and December where you can make your own creations using Painters®. They’re giving each monthly winner a prize valued at $500! Not too shabby.  The Style by Aisle with Painters Contest will have five different themes (August-December) which are based on store “aisles.” You and your other talented DIY friends/family can submit your homemade creations to elmers.com/painters. On the website, you can even download a coupon for Painters products and you can take advantage of the coupon even if you don’t enter the contest. Head over to the website to learn more! And use #StyleByAisle and #PaintersStyle to share your projects- I’ll be checking out the hashtag throughout the contest months! Can’t wait to see!

And just because I know how much everyone loves puppies…here are some recent pictures taken by Salvatori Photography from Pennlyn’s babies this summer!

Bucks County Bernese

Bucks County Bernese2

Bucks County Bernese3

To see more adorable pups follow BrynntheBernese on IG!

-Mon

**I partnered with Painters® for this project, but all opinions, product recommendations, and cute puppies are all mine!**

The comments +

  1. TaraLee says:

    I love this! Making a feeding station for my Great Danes is on my summer to-do list, but I’ve been putting it off because I was worried how hard it would be, but this post has motivated me! Just curious, why is there an extra strip of wood attached at the left end? And is this nice and stable? I’m wondering if I should use more solid legs for my clumsy pups.

  2. Linda Grady says:

    Great project! Looks easy to do. My vet recommended raising our dog’s food dish up a bit. This slows down their eating (my dog inhales his food) and they won’t get sick after eating so much. We have it on a cardboard box so this looks like a great project for us. Puppies are adorable!

  3. Christy says:

    This is fabulous! And what stinkin’ cute dogs you have!! 🙂
    Thank you for sharing.

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