Saturday, March 29, 2014

Painting Laminate Bookshelves - Dark to Bright!

I am a reader/book hoarder.  My only issue is I can't go to the Library and check out a book.  I feel like it is a must to add each book I read to my collection.  I love it when someone talks about wanting to read a book and I can be like "Oh, I have that!  You can borrow mine!"  So a few years ago when a friend was getting rid of her old laminate bookshelves and offered them for free to me, I happily went right over and picked those bad boys up.  Agh, the fulfillment of having all of my books displayed.   

When the hubby and I bought our new house and there was this wonderful little room called "The Parlor" I knew it would be a perfect room for my office/study/craft room.  Mark agreed that "The Parlor" would be a perfect fit for all of those uses, as long as I agreed to always call it "The Parlor".  He loved that.  LOL.  The desk I just finished went into this room as well.  Once I put the bookshelves in the room it just looked so dark and dreary that I knew I had to paint them (which broke Marks heart a little). 
Bookshelves Before

This was my first time painting laminate but it was super easy.  I primed it using Zinsser Primer 123, it took time because of all the shelves.  I didn't want to remove them because I was afraid it would scratch up the paint when putting them back in. 

1 coat of Primer
It took 2 coats of primer and 2 coats of paint (Satin White Latex) to get the bright look that I wanted.  After they dried I also painted 1 coat of Minwax Polycrylic.  I went with Polycrylic instead of Polyurethane because Polyurethane will yellow out white paint within a few weeks. 
Bookshelves After

Please excuse the poor lighting and the fact that the room is still unfinished.  It's a work in progress.  I'm having MAJOR issues finding affordable curtains, but that's a whole separate post!  

Close ups

Let me know what you think!  I would love to see pictures of any bookshelf makeovers you have done!  Happy painting! 

Monday, March 10, 2014

My New Desk - No More Veneer!

So, one day when the hubby wasn't home I ran out to his barn to grab a tape measure.  I was looking on Craigslist for a new desk or a table that would work for a desk to go into my office.  While I was looking around I stumbled upon an old desk that was in bad shape.  My heart may have skipped a beat, the desk was the perfect size for my office!  So when Mark got home, with the sweetest smile I could find I told him that I had stumbled on to something in his barn that I just had to have.  The desk will be perfect for my office, I can paint it and it will be just beautiful and free!  Free he liked but when I said I would be painting it a sad look came on his face.  ;)  No matter what a piece of furniture looks like I can promise two things.

  1. Mark wants it to stay stained.
  2. I always want to paint it!  
Seriously.  So much that I try to find already painted items to purchase on Craigslist so that it doesn't break his heart when I bring it home and start painting.  LOL.  It's a little game we play.  ;)  So after a little convincing he brought my new project to my office and then declared that I'm no longer allowed in his barn.  Ha!  

Before Pic

The desk had a veneer top that was in bad condition, like way to bad for repair.  So I thought I would just take it off and see what was underneath (it couldn't be any worse than it already looked).  So I just took a putty knife and scrapped away.  I tried a few other things like using a damp rag and putting an iron on top but honestly I don't really think it helped.  Elbow grease is what that top needed!  

A few close ups!

Guess what was under the layers of veneer?!  SOLID WOOD!  Yay for that find!  

Once it was all sanded was the fun part...PAINT.  Well almost, I had to prime it first.  I did 2 coats of Zinsser Bulls Eye 123 Primer, I had enough leftover from a previous project that I didn't need to buy any extra for the desk.  

The original plan was to paint the entire desk a dark gray that I already had (from painting my couch) but once I got the first coat of gray on top with the bottom still primed I kinda liked how it looked.  

Decisions!  I consulted my decorating possy and everyone overwhelmingly liked the gray with white look.  So I rolled with it!  

After the desk was painted the only decision left was what color to paint the drawer pulls.  After looking at tons of different options I went with Krylon 18kt Gold spray paint.  It was super easy to use and dried in 30 minutes, which appeals to my impatient side.  :)  I have always been a silver girl but here lately have gotten pulled into this gold trend.  I may end up changing it in a few months but for now I'm a happy girl!  

I loved the final product and even the hubby admits that it looks much better being a painted desk.  ;)  Added bonus = Total cost was less than $5!  I had everything I needed on hand except for the Krylon 18kt Gold spray paint (which was only around $4 with my 40% off coupon from Michaels)!

What about you, have you painted any furniture lately?  I would love to see your pictures!  Anyone else falling for the gold trend right now?!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

DIY Rustic Pallet Shelf

This pallet shelf really just came about one day when I was bored and looking for a project.  I had a wall in my kitchen that needed something.  Picture?  Shelving?  I didn't know what but I knew it needed something. I ran across an old pallet at work that was in pretty good shape and decided it was the perfect size for the space!  So I threw it in my car and that night my pallet shelf for the Kitchen was born.  :)  It was so easy.  Basically all I did was, sand it down a little then applied oil based stain (Special Walnut) and let it sit outside for a few days (the stain smell was strong for around 2-3 days).

What do you think?  I have an unlimited supply of pallets from work, any other DIY pallet ideas that you think I should try?

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The Painted Couch...YES, I said painted.

So...someone gave me a couch.  The couch was in perfect shape, it was comfy and well made but it was U.G.L.Y.  I thought about slipcovers but honestly I have not had a great experience in the past with them, they seem to never look exactly right and never stay in place and I wasn't about to have such an old couch reupholstered.  So where did that leave me?  Paint!  I googled and found that yes it was possible to paint a couch and the best part was that it looked fairly easy and cheap. So, on a Saturday I decided to give it a try, the couch certainly couldn't look any worse.

~Before~ (I forgot to take until I had already started painting)

It was actually very easy and only took around 3 hours total.  I used normal Flat Latex Paint (Lowe's) mixed with Textile Medium (from Hobby Lobby - don't forget your coupon!).  I used a mix of 1/3 Textile Medium to 2/3 Latex Paint.  In the future I would use 1/2 & 1/2 mixture to give the material a little more flexibility.  I used less than 1/2 gallon of paint for the whole couch.  Make sure you spray the material down with water before starting to paint, the water will keep the paint from absorbing too quickly.  


I love the final product.  The couch was a little stiffer than leather for around a month or so, but once it was worn in a little it became super comfy.  I have had it as our main couch for around 2 years with no issues.  Best part - it's water resistant!  If you spill something it bubbles up on top and you can just wipe off.  

Have you ever painted fabric furniture?  If so, how did it turn out?  I would love to see pictures!