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DIY Upcycled Love Chest

From No Color- to Black and White (of coarse!)

I found this beautiful, barely used, in super condition cedar Lane Love Chest at a garage sale for $25! Of coarse it would not stay in it’s original cedar color since I refuse to own anything wood color- anyone that knows me knows that’s just not my style.  The first thing i did was lightly sand it so the primer would stick better. Then used white primer (spray can) until it was completely covered. Next I used white lacquer spray paint, about 3 coats, and a few days later I added a light layer of polyurethane to the top. When that was completely dry I added another layer of polyurethane to the top. Then I hand painted the bottom with gloss black. This took several layers because the black didn’t want to stick to all the grooves in wood engraving. I bought two little wood decals from Home Depot and hand painted those and the two handles on the front of the chest black (I would have spray painted the handles but unfortunately they were not removable).  Once the wood decals were dry I glued them to the chest and used scotch tape to hold them in place.  And once again I forgot to take a before picture, so I found an image that looks identical to the inside of my chest and shows what the color was! 

Before Color

cedar love chest

cedar love chest before picture

Upcycle In Progress

love chest during

love chest in progress photo

Wood Decals

wood decals

With Wood Decals Added

upcycled love chest

Upcycled love chest with added wood decals

 

Final Result

Black and White Upcycled Love Chest

Upcycled Love Chest

One Man’s Trash is Another (Wo)man’s Nostalgic Treasure!

1950’s Pink & White Formica Table

I have been drooling over some incredibly awesome 1950’s Formica tables I’ve come across on Pinterest and searching the local thrift shops and garage sales looking for such a vintage gem- but have had no such luck… that is until my walk to the post office last week!  I love to go for walks and since the Post Office is only 4 blocks from my house, I walk there often. Last week on one of those walks I happened to walk by this old house and saw a pile of Trash they had stacked in the dirt outside their shed next to the street. Yes, I can be nosy- and yes,  my DIY obsession may cause me to glance at people’s trash more than the average person, but I had no intention of digging through this pile of trash. I was just about past it when the silver trim of a 1950’s Formica table top caught my eye and I about jumped out of my jogging shoes with excitement! You mean to tell me all my searching and wanting to “buy” a retro Formica table was unsuccessful and I just happened to find a free one by chance- HOT DAMN!! I was (and still am) over the moon excited! I went back later with the car and picked it up. And after removing all the layers of spider webs and dirt- I am happy to share my pink and white 1950’s Formica table (top)!!  Now I just need to find a table base to put it on!

FOUND SOME, BOUGHT SOME, PUT THEM ON!!!!

I found new round chrome table legs on Ebay (looked for originals but had no luck).  So when they arrived I flipped the table over, removed the old brackets and screws, cleaned it, screwed the new brackets on by hand (took forever that way, sucks when you’re impatient and your drill’s battery is dead), and attached the new legs…..  and my retro beauty is reborn!!! I am so happy with it, love my formica table!

table3 1950s formica table

formica table

chrome formica table

formica table

 

Parlor Tattoo Prints

Can’t Get Enough Flash!

I can’t express what a huge fan I am of Parlor Tattoo Prints on Etsy! Artist Quyen Dinh has an amazing talent for portraying timeless traditional style tattoo flash.  If I owned a tattoo shop or rockabilly barber shop the walls would be full of Parlor Tattoo Prints!

Greaser tattoo flash

parlor tattoo prints

parlor tattoo printsparlor tattoo prints

parlor tattoo printsparlor tattoo prints

parlor tattoo print

parlor tattoo prints

Parlor Tattoo Prints

parlor tattoo prints

traditional parlor tattoo prints

parlor tattoo prints

It’s a Big Hair & Beetlejuice kind of day!

Aqua Net & Koffin Kats!

I’ve been pretty lazy about doing my hair lately, mostly because my headaches have been so bad I just haven’t felt like doing anything with it… and because my wild curls have a life of their own- BUT, since I’ve got my car (1957 Savoy) back on the road I’m feeling more motivated to look the part! So today I got out the Aqua Net, put on Koffin Kats, and ratted and teased a beehive inspired do, then added the Bettlejuice hair clips I love so much (from Karloff Kouture on Etsy)!  And here is the result of today’s, Rockabilly/Psychobilly- or should I just say- Rockabelle Hairstyle! 

 Maybe I should show up early to pick up my son from school today, just to embarrass him- he’s always saying “Mom, do you have to do your hair like that, everyone is staring at you.”  They may stare or think I’m weird, but all the girls say how much they love it! (Besides, I’m not one to care if others don’t like it!)

Big retro hair

rockabilly hair

Beetlejuice hair clips

Beetlejuice hair bow

Beetlejuice Lydia hair bow

DIY Coca Cola Dish Soap Dispenser

 Simple Rockabilly Kitchen Upgrade!

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My kitchen theme is cherries and Coke.  I have been wanting to find a more fitting kitchen soap dispenser for a while, when I saw a picture on Pinterest (www.keepcalmanddecorate.blogspot.com) of a Coke bottle that had been converted to a soap dispenser.  It was one of those major “duh” moments…. why didn’t I think of that-  I mean I only have a ton of empty Coke bottles!  I’m lucky enough to live in mid century modern home that has not been upgraded, as you will see by the yellow formica counter tops and original early 1960’s yellow oven. I have a 1950’s formica table that is waiting for new legs, and when I get some I will share more images of my kitchen.  I collect new and antique Coca Cola items, so as you will see, some things are old, some are not. So I took one of the newer Coke bottles, put the dish soap in it and slapped a Suave conditioner pump on it and… voila!! The pump is silver, which doesn’t match my kitchen colors, but it’s the only one I had. As soon as I find a pump in black or red I will switch it out.  

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antique coca cola crate

coke bottles and pinwheels

antique hutch with cherry and coke decor

1950’s Icon Nightstand

 Vintage Nightstand + Chalk Paint + 50’s Icons = AWESOMENESS!

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A friend of mine has done some work on my 57 Savoy and never asks for anything in return. I knew I wanted to do something for him and his wife, and since they are also huge fans of the Fabulous 50’s, and our likes are so similar,  I set out to find a vintage piece I could upcycle Rockabilly style!

I saw a cute end table he got for his wife when he posted the pictures on Facebook, then some antique cabinets that had belonged to his grandma that he commented on saying he was trying to decide on a color to paint them.  I found an adorable vintage nightstand with a lot of potential- it was exactly the type of vintage piece I was hoping to find, now I just had the important task of picking a color that would match their other furniture. So the next time I saw him as we were picking up our kids from school, I asked him if he decided what color to paint those antique cabine. I  he got, and he said he wants to go with a teal chalk paint.  I remembered the end table in his Fb pictures was done in the teal chalk paint so I went to his pictures and saved the image of it to my phone so I could compare it to the Annie Sloan chalk paint colors when I went to order it, to make sure I got the right color.

 While I waited for the paint to arrive I went on my Rockabilly Legends board and my Starlets board on Pinterest and saved a bunch of awesome images of Elvis, Johnny Cash, Marilyn Monroe, and James Dean to my computer.  I printed them onto card stock paper and cut them out. When the chalk paint arrived I went to town! I did a few coats to get it to look how I wanted, waited for it to be completely dry, then put on the Annie Sloan clear wax. The next day I mod podged the top of the nightstand with the 50’s icon pictures- which took a while to get them to fit, and cut some, and move some…  Then did the same for the bottom shelf the next day.  The day after that I did one more good thick layer of mod podge. The last thing I needed to do was find a handle to put on it. I went to the antique store and to my luck there happened to be one I thought would go perfectly with the vintage nightstand.  I wanted the handle to stand out, and to go with the black and white images of Elvis, Marilyn Monroe, Johnny Cash,  and James Dean- so I painted it black satin. Of coarse none of the screws I had fit!  So the last thing I did was go to the hardware store and get some…and….done!!  

I brought it by their house while they were at work and left it by the front door.  Then text him to let him know I made something for them and left it by the door.  I was SO happy and relieved when his wife called and told me she loved it!

vintage nightstand

Vintage upcycled nightstand

50's icon nightstand

vintage nightstand

DIY Rockabilly nightstand

vintage nightstand before upcycling

DIY 50's Icon table

Elvis, Marilyn Monroe, Johnny Cash, & James Dean table nightstand

mod podged 50's icon nightstand

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint upcycled nightstand

DIY Bettie Page Table

How I Added More of The Queen of Pinups To My Bedroom!

DIY Bettie Page Table

This another perfect example of Trash to Treasure!  I got this table from a dumpster (technically sitting next to a dumpster, not inside it, but you get the point).  It originally had silver legs and a light colored wood laminate top, which was almost completely ripped off leaving  the ugly jagged particle board underneath exposed.  When I took it home, about 2 yrs ago, I spray painted the legs black and the top red.  I attempted to sand the top before I painted it but it was beyond saving, no amount of sanding would make it smooth, it just wasn’t the right type of material- which is why it was covered with laminate in the first place.  No amount of red paint covered the rugged rough texture so I knew I would have to completely cover the top with something, but at the time I wasn’t sure what I wanted to cover it with so it has been sitting in the garage for the past 2 yrs.  Recently I decided to paint my room and revamp it, bring a more exciting, more “me” feel to it.  I knew I wanted to bring more Bettie Page into my room than the one or two pictures I have and then the idea came to me to get the table out of the garage and cover it with collage of Bettie Page photos!   

The first thing I did was go to my “Pinups” board on Pinterest and save all of my favorite black and white (to keep with the black and white with red color them of my bedroom) images of Bettie Page to my computer.  Then I printed them in 3 x 5 and 4 x 6 sizes onto regular computer paper and cut them out.  NOTE* If I could do it again I would use thicker card stock paper or photo paper to cover the rough texture of the table even better.

Next I painted the top of the table with white primer and paint in one so that the black and white images of Bettie Page would be as clear and bright as possible.

bettie page table

I started in the center of the table, putting mod podge where I wanted my picture to go, then placed the picture on top of it.  I very carefully pushed down then out towards the edges of the picture to flatten it and remove any bubbles.  This part can be very tricky because if you get mod podge on your fingers then touch the dry top of the picture, it can stick and pull off part of the image.  This would also happen less with thicker paper or photo paper.  

mod podge

I mod podged the table where I wanted the next picture to go, one at a time so the mod podge wouldn’t dry before I put the picture down.  Once all of the Bettie Page pictures were in place I went over the top of them with the mod podge.  You can go over the pictures right after you put them down but I chose to wait to save the mess and make sure the thickness would be more even.  In the photo above and below I am trying to show how much mod podge I put on my sponge brush and how thick I spread it over the pictures.

bettie page pod modged

I tried to show where my brush strokes end so you can see how thick the mod podge is.  I don’t want it to be too thick and clumpy because I can always just add more coats of mod podge later.  The images will look white and cloudy but I assure you they dry clear!

mod podged table

I let the mod podge dry. You will know when it is dry because it will be clear and smooth, no longer tacky to the touch.  Then I went over it with another layer of mod podge to make sure the paper would be protected.  (To further protect the surface you can wait a day then put a few layers of polyurethane on top of it- I usually do this but didn’t this time because I only have the high gloss finish and if I cover this I want to use the matte or satin finish).

Bettie Page table

The mod podge was dry and I was totally in love with the result- BUT the sides of the table were a major issue, they were ugly and jagged and had to be covered with something.

Bettie Page table

 I LOVE velvet ribbon and went on Etsy to find black velvet vintage ribbon, which I found and ordered from 32 degrees North.

vintage black velvet ribbon

To attach the ribbon to the sides of the table I used my Xyron 2.5″ create-a-sticker machine, just fed it through until I had enough to go all the way around the table.  I added one tiny nail in the back where the ribbon ends met…. and done!

Xyron create-a-sticker

The final result!  It’s a great tribute to the Queen of Pinups and the perfect piece of furniture for my bedroom, I am very happy about it!!  

Bettie Page table

Bettie Page table

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