Monday, November 1, 2010

Furniture Rehab Part 1 - Work what ya got baby!

So if you're as strapped for cash as my family often is, you've read my last post and thought "Well, Michelle, buying something distressed looking would be a great design option if I had any money to do that!". Well fear not, gentle reader! Fortunately you can re-design your space in a kid friendly AND very cheap way by rehabbing the furniture you already have. What it takes is often some creativity, some tools, paint and primer, and searching through the stuff you already have lying around and using it creatively.

As a former painter, paint and color is ALWAYS the first place I begin to liven up some of the things I already have. It takes a little know how to do it well, but it isn't expensive.

For instance, I had a huge coffee table/trunk in my living room that I had purchased about 10 years ago.  I loved all the storage and functionality of the piece, and it was solidly made, but the finish had gotten trashed over the years by moving, dogs, and kids. It was an eyesore.  You can see it here in the lower left of the picture.Rather than taking ages to refinish the wood, I decided to give it a new look with paint.

Here it is after one coat of black acrylic paint. Like new! It seriously looks amazing. The can of paint cost me about $8 and there is so much left that I can use it for plenty of other projects. I ended up doing three coats on this table.

But refinishing your stuff doesn't have to stop at paint. What about using glue and decorative papers, newspaper, sheets of music, or family photos to decoupage items? Or scraps of leftover wallpaper or fabric work great for inside of shelving units or applied to small objects. You can use what you have lying around like some old scrap-booking papers or purchase some remnant fabric and the glue only costs a couple of dollars. This also tends to disguise furniture that is pretty badly damaged. You can also do mosaic on pieces with mirrors or broken tiles, dinnerware, or whatever you have lying around or can get cheaply or free! Feeling glizty? Pick up some gold or silver leafing kits at the craft store to apply to items. 

You can also repurpose things like old placemats (try adhering them to cabinet or hutch doors and trim with molding) and woven window shades (cut them up to apply to items for decorative trims or insets). If your piece of furniture has glass, why not change it out for color, or Krylon makes a glass frosting spray - which keeps little fingerprints from showing as much and the unsightly stuff inside better hidden!

No comments:

Post a Comment