Outdated / Updated Jewelry box

7.13.13 Both + finds 200Rummage sale jewelry box, still covered with dust!  The MAIN thing I look for in old jewelry boxes before buying them to update is CLEAN INNARDS!   I’d say about 90% of them that I look back are not clean enough inside for me to buy.  No one wants to store their jewelry in a fabric lined and very stained drawer!

7.13.13 Both + finds 201The doors open up to three more drawers.  Opening the bottom drawer activates the music box. This one was considerable more elaborate than I had ever worked on before, but it had clean innards and the price was right; even if it didn’t turn out ‘good enough to sell’.

P1080050I’m actually quite pleased with the way it turned out!

P1080054I even painted the back!  There’s the crank for the music.

P1080051This was a more labor intensive project than I thought it would be.  Painting the metal grating on the doors took more time than anything else.

P1080053I was however, able to do a fair amount of the sanding to distress with my orbital sander.  Only had to supplement a little bit of hand sanding.

P1080052Lots of ridges and raised details make for great distressing.

P1080076It went to my booth at Stars.


And has already SOLD!


Outdated / Updated little 2 drawer night stand. And don’t forget the STARS BIG SALE Saturday – Monday!!

P1070974A sturdy little 2 drawer night stand, but a bit ‘basic’ (BORING! in my best JoAnne Worley voice!)

P1070977Clean drawer innards?  Check!  ***(Icky drawer innards are a ‘deal breaker’ for me!)

P1070976No annoying stickers to remove? Check!  ***(While having to remove stickers is NOT a ‘deal breaker’ for me; NO stickers to deal with is a BONUS!)  SOLD!!!

P1080048Took this little guy home and gave it a good sanding.  

TO PREP furniture that has a shiny finish before repainting you can do one of two things:

* SAND off the old finish (I use an orbital sander)   Hand sanding is OKAY, just time consuming.

* PRIME with a brush on primer; like KILZ.  

Sanding is preferable if you are going to distress your painted piece.  You CAN still sand a primed then painted piece; just remember that the WHITE primer is going to shoe through BEFORE you get down to the wood.  Neither method is BETTER than the other; just different end results.

P1080049After sanding and wiping off the dust, I applied two coats of paint; using a small foam paint roller for as much of it as possible.

(Read about how ‘clean’ and store my paint rollers and brushes  HERE.)

After the paint is dry, it’s time to distress.  Again, I use my orbital sander for this.  (I really CAN’T do much hand sanding due to my bad back)  Then I varnish just the top, and add knobs and I’m done!  


I added some cute ceramic knobs with a chandelier design.  Available in my booth at Stars for $42.00.  (****OR if you go during the sale this weekend, you can get it for $10.00+ less!!)  25% off all regular priced items in my booth during the sale,

P1070813This open shelf night stand that I showed a few weeks ago is also now at Stars.  Regular price: $45.00.

P1080095LOTS of good stuff 25% off this Saturday – Monday only at Stars.


The finished dresser

If YOU are ever on the hunt for a dresser to ‘use as an art canvas’ and do a unique paint job on; THIS is exactly what you want to look for:

– perfectly clean lines on the front.  No ‘fancy stuff’ on the drawers.  (just like this one!)

– little to NO space between the drawers.   (just like this one!)

– as few knobs/pulls as possible.  (just like this one!  BUT, you can always fill in extra holes with putty)

And while this dresser WAS ‘the perfect candidate’ for the ART DRESSER I’ve been itchin’ to create . . . . I chickened out! I’m just NOT QUITE to the point where I can AFFORD to say “I don’t care if it sells or not!”.  I don’t mind re-painting something a different color if it has sat and not sold for a long time; (and HAVE done so many times!)  but I don’t want to have to spend DAYS removing an old design.   

SO, I went with my original thought and as someone commented, just did some unique drawer pulls.   My thinking is that knobs are super easy to change out and fairly inexpensive to buy new ones; especially when it’s as few a just four, as on this dresser.   And if everything else about the dresser was to their liking (size and paint color) that some wild and crazy knobs would NOT be a ‘deal breaker’ to a potential customer.  

These are the same wood ovals I pondered using with the numbered drawer pulls.  They were hand cut from pine years ago when I was doing primitives and folk art; so they are NOT perfectly oval.  I have 2 sizes.  The picture above is on the BACK side of the knob.  I added a thin wood piece to function as a washer, so to create a bit of space for easier handling of the knobs.

I painted the 8 individual pieces first; then glued them together with e6000.

Then after the adhesive completely dried, I sanded the edges a bit and applied a mat varnish for protection since they will be ‘handled’ a lot. (sheesh!)

Meanwhile, I had removed all the old knobs, and sanded the entire dressed.  Was HOPING to be able to get down to the bare wood, so that when I distressed it later that the brown would show through.  Alas, it had TOO many layers of paint for me to sand through; (except along the edges) so I just sanded off the sheen, then applied a coat of KILZ primer.  The above picture is BEFORE I distressed.

After distressing.  You can see a few specks of the brown undercoat, but it’s mostly the white primer that shows through where I sanded.  (it just doesn’t show UP very well in the photo!)

And there she is!   The little dresser with the funky oval knobs!

The white distressed stuff STILL is not showing through, even this close.  Trust me, it’s IS quite distressed.  

I do not typically apply varnish, or any kind of protective clear coat over my finishes.  I like to allow things to ‘continue to age’, and don’t want to worry about it getting scratched or knicked up while I haul it around.  But, as I already mentioned, I did varnish the drawer pulls, and I usually apply a coat of MAT varnish to the TOP ONLY of tables and dressers, for added durability.

Just be sure ALL your products are of the same BASE.  (ie oil based or water based)  I ONLY use water based products.  Have you ever repainted something and had it remain ‘tacky’ (sticky!) for ages???  That would be because you probably applied a water based paint over a water based; or vice versa.  Another good reason to ALWAYS sand off the old finish and/or use a GOOD PRIMER!

I must admit that I’m not as thrilled with the results as I thought I’d be.  I don’t dislike it.  I’m just not ‘over the moon’ with it.  She’ll be hanging out in storage for a short while before heading to Stars.  Michael is working on some wonderfully RUSTIC pieces made from sun bleached wood that will be going to Stars next.


OUTDATED / UPDATED: Carved wood seahorse

Vintage carved teak wood seahorse I found at a thrift store.

It had a bit of a crack down the middle of the head, so before I painted it, I filled the crack with some tacky glue to be sure it didn’t crack further.

I just slapped on a couple of quick coats of my beachy blue paint and sanded it to distress (with a COARSE sanding sponge).

The eyes don’t show up very well in the photo, but they do in person.

For sale in my booth at Stars.  I’ll be adding more beach and spring decor after Valentine’s Day.

FAQ’s answered: What paint color do you use?

I don’t actually have “A” specific color that I use.  Here’s what I do.  I buy a color that is closest to what I want, then I add a little light green or sometimes some additional aqua, or light blue or gray or white . . . .whatever strikes me at the time.  So the color evolves as I work my way through various projects.   I actually PREFER to not have every item the EXACT same color.  The variations in shades remind me of the ever changing colors of the ocean.

Every paint manufacturer whose paint samples I’ve looked at lately has a least one (if not several!) color that is very close to what I use.  So, it shouldn’t be hard to find one that suits you.  As for changing the color by adding other paint colors, regular craft paint can be used in small amounts if you don’t happen to have latex paint available.  You can also look for the ‘oops’ paints that paint stores sell really cheap! 

I AM a stickler for only buying Ralph Lauren brand paint though whenever possible.  (at least for my MAIN colors)   Tried others when they were on sale and have always regretted it.  The RL paint IS quit a bit more expensive to BUY; but it’s so cost effective to USE, you really come out ahead.  Especially if you are doing a LOT of painting, like me! 

Half round coffee table

Michael scrounged (rescued from a dumpster!) several of these BIG half round pieces of plywood, so I’ve been wracking my brain to think of a good way to USE them.  First thought was a headboard for a child’s bed, or maybe a GIANT ‘man in the moon’ painting.  Nope, just not the right inspiration yet.  THEN I was telling Michael what items are on my current ‘wish list’, and coffee tables was at the top of the list.  Why not make some half round coffee tables?!?  And so we did!

SUPER simple design with an elongated “H” base (instead of legs) like we use for step stools.  I painted the whole thing beachy blue, sanded to distress then applied some of my own ‘weathered wood wash’ (a stain or glaze would work just as well) to give it that weathered beach feeling.

Things NEVER look as ‘distressed’ in the pictures as they really are!  sigh.  It is QUITE well distressed, trust me.

We actually made 2 of them.  Was thinking it would be fun to display them together, as a big round, like this.  Alas, I don’t think there is going to be enough room in my booth at Stars for both of them just now.  One of them will be going in this week, for sure though.

We’ve got a couple more pieces of this half round stuff to work with; so we’ll see how well these coffee tables go over before we decide to make more or not.  I also spotted a smaller half round in Michael’s stash and was thinking we could do a TALL sofa back table, with a shelf  below, and an upper shelf  from the smaller half round.  Would work well as an entry hall table or even a BAR! 

Watch for LOTS of the beachy blue items to appear at Stars by the end of the week!