Tag Archives: furniture

Armoire Upcycled into Modern Campaign Chest of Drawers

c_chest2I’m continuing to create furniture from the bulky Armoire seen in this post! It’s been a blast to come up with new designs and upcycle this piece into modern furniture! I already built this Campaign Lingerie Chest out of it, so I wanted to create a complimentary Campaign Chest of Drawers. It was an extremely easy build, making it like you would any simple base cabinet. With 3/4″ plywood, wood glue, and screws, I slapped this bad boy together & used birch veneer iron-on edging to give it a finished look! I also had to sand, re-stain, and rub-on poly the drawer fronts and brasso the hardware. The outside of the chest was painted with Miss Mustard Seed’s milk paint in ‘Artissimo’ followed by hemp oil & I used the same mint green on the inside of the open shelf as I did on the lingerie chest. I painted the base and campaign T’s brass to finish this chest off. I have yet to decide whether or not I’m going to use the last of my vintage campaign T’s on the corners of this piece or use them on a coordinating bench or nighstand, so for now this chest is finished. Check out my work in picture form! —>

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I’m currently brainstorming what I can make with the doors that remain from the original armoire and hoping I find another one to upcycle soon!!! Have you dismantled any furniture lately?!

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Hope you and your family have a fun and safe Fourth of July!!! :D

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Armoire Upcycled into Modern Campaign Lingerie Chest

campaign_drawers_sombWell, it has been a long couple weeks for me! My boys have been on Spring break, so I did a lot more playing than working, hehe, but I did manage to get this upcycle finished! It all started when a friend gave me a HUGE armoire by Lane Furniture… it reminded me of a feminine version of campaign pieces + I loved it’s hardware and all it’s storage, but I thought it could be amazing split into a couple pieces of furniture. I then went on to dismantle the armoire while building a lingerie chest out of 3/4″ plywood. It was an extremely simple build that was made daunting by only using scraps I had in my wood shop. Normally the sides would just be two pieces, but since this is all scraps, it ended up being made out of many. The upside is that it was free, the downside being that it took way longer than it should of! Check out my work—>

campaign_work_somb.jpg.jpgI simply built the drawer boxes out of 3/4″ plywood interlocking the boxes with fluted dowel pins and screws, making sure to install the tracks before enclosing each box and adding 1/4″ backing. I then sanded, slapped on two coats of Behr ‘Winter Fresh’, waxed twice, and bada bing, bada boom, there she is! Ok, maybe it wasn’t quite that simple. I also had to hunt down some campaign T hardware, grind 4 of them into L shapes (for the corners), and paint said hardware with brass gilding! I also had to plane and refinish the drawer fronts since they had a black speckle finish on them. They got a sanding of 80 grit, 120 grit, then 220 grit, some espresso stain, and finally, rub-on poly to make them beautiful again! I think she turned out great and I can’t wait to make a matching dresser out of the two remaining larger drawers!

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Do you have an upcycle on your to-do list?

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Mersman in Mint

Happy Wordless Wednesday to y’all! :D

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I came across this beautiful little Mersman table recently & since I’m a tad obsessed with mint at the moment, I picked up a brush and painted away!! I also distressed, waxed, primed, and polyed, of course, hehe! The bad news is there are no before pics on this one since I’ve been crazy busy deckin’ the halls, but the good news is that this very table is being GIVEN AWAY soon! Keep an eye on my blog for details & happy holidays to you!!!

A Table Named Fran

I don’t know why I get so attached to furniture… I just get a feeling from some pieces, an urge to bring them back to their former glory or to create a more modern story with their timeless beauty. Guess I’m just a romantic at heart! This piece gave me that feeling and more even before I painted, distressed, and waxed it!!

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As I worked, it reminded me of my Great Aunt Fran, classy and beautiful. That description could also hold true for my Mother, which is why I’m beyond happy that this piece is going to her! Hope you enjoy it, Mom! :)))

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Chic Antique – A Side Table Refinish in Teal & White

IMG_2582Hello there! I am so happy to share this recent refinish with you! This 1930’s Brandt side table was a wreck when I found it, but after a little tlc she is beautiful once more! For the look of this piece I had a past client’s future nursery in mind & I think it turned out perfectly as a chic side table! To get this look, I started by sanding the wood top and finishing with satin lacquer. I then painted the whole piece in a custom teal I mixed up. I taped off the edge detail along with a square on the shelf, painting that area a lovely white to offset the aqua. After the paint dried I distressed and added Briwax clear wax to give the whole piece a soft glow. My process might take a long time and be labor intensive, but if the end result is as pretty as this then it’s all worth it! Check out my work!
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I really hope this piece finds a loving home! :)))

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Teal for Teacher… Antique Table Refinish

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This project was a joy to work on since this beautiful antique table belongs to my oldest little guy’s favorite Pre-K teacher. She handed me a bedspread to choose the table’s color from and gave me carte blanche to refinish the piece!
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I started by repairing an inside drawer box piece, staining any bare wood & scratches to match the existing finish, and filling a hole in one of the back legs. Then I whipped up some homemade chalk paint using pigment from Behr’s Bali Bliss, a gorgeous teal that matches her bedspread. I applied one coat of chalk paint to the base and two to the top. I wanted the drawer front to have more of a distressed look to it than the rest of the piece, so I sanded it a tad in spots that would normally show wear. The drawer’s knobs were stunning, but needed a new paint job and waxing to make them stand out. I also waxed the rest of the piece using rags from an old shirt dipped in Briwax, gently distressing as I applied. When working with chalk paint you have to distress gently as the paint comes off very easily. I buffed out the wax on the base, protecting the chalk paint and creating a beautiful sheen. I then got to work on the top, gently sanding with 220 grit sandpaper & waxing, letting it dry, then buffing the top, being extremely careful not to remove any chalk paint. This creates a wonderful texture and pattern reminiscent of water, which looks amazing with blues and greens such as this table.
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I’m thrilled with how this table turned out… hope my son’s teacher enjoys her pop of color!
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Finishes

Quick guide to the different Finishes that I can apply to your piece…

Polyurethane
Poly is a durable finish that is fairly easy to apply & fast-drying, especially if you choose the more expensive spray-on version. It comes in a varying degree of sheens (satin, semi-gloss, and high gloss), which makes it a no-brainier finish for a lot of my projects since it is somewhat toddler-proof. The oil-based version can yellow over time, so I never use it on light stains or paints, while the water-based version (polycrylic) stays clear but has a more plastic look to it. It’s also worth noting that you have to lightly sand between coats (I apply at least 3) in order for the coats to adhere to each other. I used wipe-on poly and satin spray poly on my family’s Buffet Turned Media Cabinet & polycrylic on this Mid Century Desk.

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Wipe-on Polyurethane
You can make your own rub-on poly by adding equal parts mineral spirits to polyurethane.

Furniture Wax
roundsidetablewAhhh, wax! I love using furniture wax! It creates a soft sheen & a warm glow that is smooth to the touch which can’t be duplicated with any other finish. Depending on which wax you choose, it can have an obnoxious odor so I always use a respirator and wear gloves. You will get a workout while buffing the applied wax to create the lovely sheen! I used wax to distress and finish the bottom of this beauty.

 

Lacquer
stella_finalThis finish is durable, hard, and toddler-proof, not as easy to apply as polyurethane, but there is no need to sand between coats like there is with poly. It comes in sheens ranging from ultra matte to high gloss. I use this finish for wooden furniture with beautiful wood grain that I want to highlight and protect! I used it on the round side table’s wood top seen here.

 

Shellac
A resin secreted by the female lac bug, sold as dry flakes and dissolved in ethyl alcohol creating a liquid shellac. This finish is extremely durable, comes in white, orange, or pigmented, cleans with mineral spirits, and was widely on furniture before the 1920’s. I might use this, but it spoils in a can if left unused for long periods of time.

Latex Paint
campaign_side_somb.jpgAlso known as acrylic paint, it’s a fast drying paint containing pigment suspension in acrylic polymer emulsion. It can be diluted with water, yet still be water-resistant when dry. It comes in any color you can think of and is a long lasting finish when applied to furniture properly, (sanding, then priming before applying two coats of paint). I used latex paint on this Modern Lingerie Campaign chest that I upcycled from an Armoire.

Milk Paint
c_chest2Milk paint is a beautiful paint finish, chemically safe and environmentally friendly. I love to distress milk-painted pieces, has an unpredictable chipping off to it that looks authentic and lovely. It’s best to finish with a coat of wax since it isn’t as durable as it is beautiful. Miss Mustard Seed & Old Fashioned Milk Paint paints are my favorite. You can also make your own, though it is not a pleasing process. Check out this Campaign Chest I built & painted with milk paint!

Chalk Paint
frontteal_sombChalk paint is an extremely easy to apply paint that you don’t have to prime before applying, though it is best to apply a coat of wax as a topcoat. It is a gorgeous choice! I have the perfect piece for it so it is time for me to make another batch, fairly simple to make… I’ll post exactly how to make it soon, just need some non-sanded grout, water, and acrylic paint! If you’d rather not wait or have a little extra cash, Annie Sloan Chalk Paint is stunning! Check out this end table that I painted with some homemade teal chalk paint!

Primer
It’s always a good idea to use a primer before applying acrylic paint to anything. I also go the extra mile and sand a tad before applying primer… oil-based Zinsser is great and it even comes in a spray form, making quick work of painting furniture.

Oil-Based Stain
Oil-based stains are extremely durable and penetrate the wood deeper than water-based, but do take longer to dry. Stains come in a variety of colors and can really bring out the character of wood pieces.

Water-Based Stain
Unlike oil-based stains, water-based stains dry very quickly, which makes it harder to achieve an even finish… on the up side you can clean up with soap and water and it’s breathable. Always be sure to test whichever stain you choose to be sure that opacity and color are just how you want them!

Oil Finishes
Oil Finishes, such as linseed and hemp, are incredibly easy to apply, penetrate wood pieces and add charm, but do nothing for protection. If your main goal is to beautify a piece with no need to protect, than I recommend trying out oils.

Spar Urethane

live_edge_3_sombThis finish has an oil-based formula which forms a barrier against rain and moisture to protect the wood. Spar Urethane is amazing for exterior pieces since it has a UV blocker and expands and contracts with the wood as the seasons and temperatures change. I like it in a high gloss finish which really enhances the natural beauty of wood… for instance, I used it on the top of my Live Edge Walnut Slab Console Table.

Wood Oxidizer

barndoorfront_sombThis is a finish that my 5 year-old & I love to use… he’s my on call wood oxidizing technician, hehe! I have made multiple pieces by oxidizing pallet wood, favorite of which being my interior sliding barn door (post coming soon). You can even make your own wood oxidizing solution simply by letting torn up 0000 steel wool disintegrate in white vinegar for a few days. Then you just paint it on your bare wood and watch it transform almost immediately to become darker and more weathered looking. You can also add some strong black tea to your wood beforehand to give it a grayer look (adding some rusty nails to your oxidizing mixture will give your wood a ruddier tinge). Experimenting with this finish is a blast and something that the kiddos can help with! Check out the interior sliding barn door that I used this finish on!

A nook for my family…

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Hey y’all! Thanks for visiting!

This built-in was a blast to design and build! My family needed seating for our teeny tiny kitchen so creating a board and batten banquette was at the top of my to-do list. Clocking in at two weeks (worked on it intermittently while watching my adorable toddlers) & costing $150 bucks (would’ve been higher had it not been for an electrician friend that ran an outlet into it, which I built the little door for). This project was well worth the time and money spent + my family loves it which makes me over-the-moon happy!

Here’s a quick photographic step-by-step in case this project is also on your to-do list!

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I built the bench frame just as you would a freestanding wall… over-killing it a tad since I wanted it to be super sturdy for my little guys. I used #8 wood screws, wood glue, and 2 x 4’s from pallets. The top of the bench is 3/4 oak plywood (oak is stronger than pine), covered with two coats of Behr latex paint in Polar Bear. I implemented a board and batten style on the exterior of the frame… battens built from 1 x 3’s & 1 x 4’s & boards are 1/4″ hardboard with finish trim on the top and bottom, all caulked then painted with two coats of semi-gloss latex. I added a small door on the end in order to plug our electronics into the outlet inside the banquette. The simple H hinges, bling knob, and pop of chartreuse paint accent the bench beautifully & I hope to have an aqua-colored cushion made for my family’s nook soon!
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Nothing turns a house into a home quite like built-ins! I am ecstatic about how it turned out & you will not regret tackling a project like this yourself! Happy DIY’ing to you!!

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… better ‘After” photo & dining room table refinish coming soon!

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3 months later photo shown above with my sweet little guy enjoying it… read about my future plans for my family’s nook here! :)))

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Shipwrecked Mersman – Extremely Distressed Table Refinish

Hello again! I have had the color aqua on the brain lately for some reason, so I decided to paint this antique Mersman end table in Aqua Bay by Behr, along with a darker aqua from a custom color match of a plate on my kitchen wall. The results are refreshing and reminiscent of what a shipwrecked piece of furniture might resemble.

shipwreckedangle_sombI see it perfectly at home in an old Key West Hotel… I try to think of a concept for each piece before I refinish it, wether that concept be authentic, traditional, or in this case, shipwrecked, which is more in the lines of furniture as a canvas. Here’s the step-by-step… hope you enjoy!

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Normally I like to restore wood to it’s former glory, but in this case, it’s grain was nothing to write home about & the top was water damaged so this piece became a perfect candidate for a new paint job. My current favorite color is aqua, maybe it’s the spring in the air, or taking my little guys out to the beach… whatever it is, I’m in color love with aqua at the moment! I like to be thrifty, so it’s also the color of my sliding barn door handle (post coming soon). To paint this piece I bought two Behr samples, at not even $4 each, they are a very economical choice and more than enough to cover a few small pieces of furniture. I primed the top before applying Behr’s Aqua Bay flat latex because I wanted the top to stay a more solid color even after distressing & waxing. The rest of the piece I painted a darker shade of aqua, followed by the lighter shade, so that when distressing it would have a beautiful depth to it.
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I let the paint dry for a couple hours before taking a scouring pad to the top, distressing it just enough to let let the white primer and slices of wood show through. Then I went on to distressing the rest by dipping 0000 steel wool into the Briwax tin and vigorously rubbing the paint off. Everyone has different preferences on what products they use. I use Briwax (a solvent based blend of beeswax and carnauba wax) because it’s economical and available at my local hardware store + I received a respirator for Christmas, so I don’t mind whatever smell the wax might have. I achieved this extremely distressed look by taking a lot of the paint finish off while rubbing the wax on. I let it dry for a few minutes then rubbed the wax off with an old t-shirt cut into very small rags, giving it the soft sheen that you can only get with furniture wax. *wax on, wax off* In order to get the warm glow you have to buff the wax off until it no longer feels tacky and your fingers glide on the piece without sticking. It feels so beautifully smooth to the touch, even though it looks incredibly rough! Here in Florida, this extremely distressed look in an oceanic color melds perfectly into any beach-lover’s space.

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Thank you for visiting!

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Antique Buffet Turned Media Cabinet

20130321-223545.jpgAhhh, I’m so thrilled to be done with this project! Yes, I am in love with the final result, but, WOW, what a lot of work this refinish was! I had been scouring Craig’s List for months trying to find the perfect sideboard to turn into an entertainment center & then there it was… a thirty dollar, heavier than heck, paint-speckled, mammoth piece of furniture crafted by the Mount Airy Mantel and Table Co. Inc…. I snagged it up in a heartbeat & I was excited about the future splinters it would give me. I had originally planned on painting & distressing the base an antique white and refinishing the top in an ebony stain, but like most projects, once I start working on them, they have something else in mind! The wood underneath the icky orange stain and black paint speckle was so gorgeous that I just had to put myself through the misery of sanding the ENTIRE exterior of the piece down to bare wood! It took over two weeks of stripping and sanding, but the results were worth it. I conditioned the wood and stained it ebony, then red mahogany, to give it a depth and hint of burgundy. While the stain dried, I primed and painted the interior a fresh, spring green, finishing up with a polycrylic topcoat since there would be warm electronics inside. Once the stain was dry, I sprayed on a coat of satin polyurethane so that when I used the rub-on poly, the stain wouldn’t come off. The finish looks like bare wood, but gives the piece a warm sheen & protection from my toddlers.

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buffetprogressTurning the buffet into a unit for storing entertainment equipment was the easy part. I took out the staples and pried the backing off & cut two rectangular holes smaller than the width of our DVR and blu ray player where the cords could be fed through. In order for the remotes to work I left the panels out of the middle two doors (still hunting for the perfect aged glass to have cut for the center insets), and painted the inset panels of the outer doors to make the beautiful carvings pop & accentuate the piece’s symmetry. Voila, it is now a media cabinet! If I would’ve started a swear jar at the beginning of this project, I’d have enough quarters to buy my next furniture refinishing project, lol! In the end, all the splinters were worth the result… having a piece of furniture in your home that you poured your heart and soul into that will someday be passed down through generations is the epitome of joy!

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Now I’m off to find the perfect glass insets for the center doors! Happy DIY’ing weekend to y’all!!

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