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Category Archives: DIY

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

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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

Mannequin Makeover

Gingham and Polka Dots!

Rockabilly mannequin makeover

I bought this mannequin to use when taking pictures for my Etsy shop and the plain look of it got to me.  Since it usually sits by my desk in the living room I wanted to make it more my style!   I ripped off the fabric and foam and mod podged pieces of gingham and polka dot (2 of my favorite Rockabilly prints) fabric in it’s place. It was more time consuming than I had anticipated,  but I’m happy with it!

Before:

mannequin makeover

During:

DIY mannequin makeover

mannequin before picture

After:

rockabilly mannequin

Upcycled Vintage Childs Desk

Late 1800’s Cleveland S.F. CO. Desk with a DIY New Look!

upcycled antique desk

DIY vintage desk

I got this adorable antique desk earlier this year when I was homeschooling my kids, when my mom and I saw it we knew it was perfect for my 5 year old.  BUT, as many know- wood (unpainted wood) is SO NOT MY STYLE!  No disrespect to the wonderful antique collectors out there that like to keep things in all their original glory… it’s just not my thing!  This lovely little piece of vintage furniture is also going to go in my daughter’s room, which is why I painted it black and slapped some extra shine on it (to match her other upcycled furniture, like the vintage jewelry box from my last post).  My before pictures were in my phone that got stolen a few months ago so I went online and found pictures that were the closest to what it originally looked like. 

DIY Upcycling Steps:

1.  Sanded the wood with fine sandpaper. I didn’t sand it alot- although I wanted to change the look with color, I wanted to keep the character the cracks and flaws give it!

2.  Used Rustoleum spray primer, one light coat was all it took… just enough to have even coverage.

3.  Sprayed all of it, wood and iron, with black lacquer spray paint.  I did at least 3 light coats, not too much at one time to prevent drips or cracks.   Allowed each layer to totally dry before moving on.

4.  Used painters tape on iron/metal parts I didn’t want to get polyurethane on…

5.  Did 3 layers of polyurethane on the wood parts of the chair, and at least 5 layers of polyurethane on the top of the desk and desk bench.  I use the polyurethane to give the paint a super glossy look, to protect the paint and because my 5 year old is a freaking cyclone!  That kid can stain, damage, ruin… ANYTHING (she sure is adorable though)!!

TIP:

Learn from my impatience and take the time to take as much of your project apart as you can,  BEFORE you paint.  I say this because when I took my “painters” tape off the metal parts of the chair, it took some paint off in places… not dramatically but enough to where I had to spray a Q-tip with my black lacquer spray paint and touch it up (so in the end I didn’t end up saving any time by skipping that step, plus it would have looked better).

Before Pictures:

Antique childs desk

vintage childs desk

More After Pictures:

antique desk

upcycled childs antique desk

antique upcycled desk

vintage upcycled desk

DIY upcycled vintage desk

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