Yard Sale Ornate Mirror Makeover

As an avid yard sale shopper, I look for unique things that I can envision fitting into a space in my home and sometimes other people’s homes.  This large, ornate gold mirror was one of those things I almost passed on but then decided that for $20 it was too great and took it home.  The frame was PLASTIC!  But then, who cares??  It’s pretty!  Of course, if you have been following me at all since I started this blog, you will know that I paint a lot!  Most items will get a new look with just a little white paint.

I looked around my house and couldn’t find a spot to put this mirror but at the time I got it, my son and his wife were purchasing a new home and I knew the perfect spot for it.  Out comes the white paint from the stash in the garage and the transformation begins.

First, I completely covered the frame with a couple coats of satin white paint from Lowes.  You could use any color but I’m in a white mode right now.  Then after it was dry, I took a small piece of sandpaper and lightly “distressed” some of the detail.  This gives it just more of worn, older look and allows some of the gold to show through as in the photo below.

When I was finished, I brought the mirror over and hung it in their dining room.  It was the perfect place and reflects the light and crystals in the chandelier.

Don’t you just love their elegant French Chic dining room?!!

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Yard Sale Candlesticks Get a Facelift with Chalk Paint

Something will catch my eye at a yard sale and I’ll just have to pick it up.  This was the case for these large green ceramic candlesticks that I purchased for $5 right in our neighborhood.  I didn’t necessarily hate the color, but I wasn’t sure I would have a place for them either.  They just were large candlesticks with a cute “shabby chic” design and for $5 they went home with me.  The price tag on the bottom of just one was $39!

I couldn’t find a good place for them in my house so when my son and his wife bought a home in the development across the street from us, I brought them over to see if there would be a place for them.   I always try things in various places and move accessories around a room to see where they might work best.  Sometimes they stay and other times they end up in another room.  I started by putting them on the mantel but they just didn’t seem right there.

Later on I added a mirror above the mantle and they were just too large.  I took them back home and put them in the garage to sell.  I even had them out on a site posted for sale but I didn’t get any buyers.

While working on ideas for their master bedroom, I came up with a new plan for them.  Why not get out my chalk paint and just give them a nice neutral coat.  It literally took me less than thirty minutes to transform them into what you see below.  Both of the chalk paint colors were purchased from Michaels and were already in my garage so it didn’t cost me anything.  I put one coat of the taupe/grayish color on first with a brush and then highlighted the embossed areas with white to bring that out.  I also added some white brush strokes to the body to make them look old.  The good thing about this project is it is better if the paint job isn’t perfect as I wanted it to look old and worn.

Since I was helping them decorate their master bedroom, I purchased some antique dressers on Craigslist and planned on going in the direction of a farmhouse chic style.  These would work very well.  I will share more photos of the bedroom when it is all finished but here is where the candlesticks landed!

It’s a beach kind of week!

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How to Paint Upholstered Furniture

How many times have you passed on buying a piece of vintage furniture because you really hated the fabric on it and didn’t have the money to pay for someone to reupholster it?  I used to until I discovered that almost anything can be painted if you are willing to put in some time.  I would warn that it is very difficult to paint over a textured fabric such as velveteen or very “nubby” type fabrics.  Believe me I’ve tried and failed doing this.  However, if the piece is a simple cotton or a non-textured fabric, it can be done and look quite nice.

I read a lot about doing this on Pinterest before attempting it.  There are several different ways of painting the fabric.  This post will just show one chair that I have painted.  This chair was purchased at a yard sale for $3 and had what I call “good bones” so I thought I’d experiment with it.  If I tried and failed, it could go out with the bulk pick up with the garbage.

This is how the piece looked before I started painting the fabric.  I am definitely not in love with this weird striped fabric that doesn’t even work with a tufted back.  The chair was otherwise in perfect condition and very sturdy.  Even the caning was perfect on the sides.

The first thing I did was chalk paint the wooden frame and the caning with a light taupe/gray chalk paint from Michaels.  After that was dry I took a spray bottle and filled it with water and sprayed the fabric to wet it a little.  Pinterest told me to do this before the first coat so I followed their instructions!  It is supposed to help the paint soak in and adhere to the fabric.  I am not really sure that was needed after I did it.  Then I started chalk painting the fabric with a white chalk paint that I already had in my stash.  The first couple layers didn’t cover too well so I knew it was going to take many coats to cover this lovely blue striped fabric, especially since I was going white.

 

You have to lightly sand the fabric after each coat of chalk paint to keep the fabric from getting too stiff.  It still won’t be super soft but should still feel like fabric if done right.

Truthfully, I thought I was going to end up throwing the chair away as I was just tired of putting coat after coat on and sanding but I kept going.  In the end I even switched to straight latex paint for the final 2 coats.  Because I did that to speed up the coverage, the seat ended up being almost “leather-like” but even that is better than the original and I think it turned out real cute.

 

I wouldn’t say this is my favorite repurpose makeover, but this is a room that doesn’t get a lot of use so the chair works for now and looks good.  Time will tell on the “wear” to see if it holds up.  Next time you see something you like but you don’t like the fabric, give it a try!   You might be able to make it Practically Palm Beach style.

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Designing a Coastal Beach Bedroom on a Budget

Designing a Coastal beach bedroom on a budget is easier and cheaper than you think!

What was I thinking!!!???  I live in South Florida and have never had a room that was specifically designed in a coastal beach style.  That’s just WRONG!  I guess it just has never been my style…that is, until recently! I tend to redecorate rooms in my house quite frequently as I get inspired by a piece of furniture, or gazing through Pinterest or in this case, a visit to the beach. Last spring I was bored with a spare bedroom that hadn’t changed in several years.  It was painted Rockport Gray and had a rustic/vintage feel.

It just seemed like it was ready for a new fresh, brighter more coastal look.  Let’s go BEACHY!

I started by going through my stash (and I mean large stash) of paint swatches to find just the right blue wall color.  This Sea Salt Blue was the perfect palette to start the coastal beach bedroom transformation.  The only other thing I really needed to do was add some accessories and change out some of the rustic/vintage furniture as I found it.  Being the practical person I am, I started searching for beachy decor at yard sales and discount stores.

A new paint color instantly changed the room.

I found the knarly branch and Beach House sign at yard sales.

Two Yard Sale Finds – Branch & Sign

I had purchased this awesome headboard at a yard sale years ago for only $8!  So many people have wanted to buy this from me, but it’s just one of those pieces that I’ll never sell because it can be used in many different ways.  I also bought the high-quality cotton blue pillow shams at a yard sale for $8/both.

I found these two pillows at Steinmart and Homegoods.

Pretty much everything in this room has been purchased from a yard sale, even the matelasse bedspread ($5) and silk bedskirt ($5).

I just needed another pop of beachy color and decided to pick up this striped throw from Tuesday Morning for $39 (sort of a splurge for me), but it was perfect so I went for it.

Even the plantation shutters were purchased at a yard sale a few years ago and fit in very well with the beach cottage look.

Finally, the best deal in my house is this antique brass chandelier that was purchased many years ago at a yard sale for only $3!  I’ve actually had it for many years and even brought it from my former house where it was in my dining room.  I’m not sure it’s COASTAL/BEACHY but I love it so it stays.

Antique Brass Chandelier
Mercury Glass Lamps (TJ Maxx)
Yard Sale Etched Mirror $3
Got to have a beachy candle!

I found this Bombay dresser on the side of the road when I was out yard-saling!  Why do people throw away perfectly great furniture pieces???  I grabbed it!

Bombay Dresser FREE

I already had this vintage dresser that I had previously painted a light gray that I thought would work.  I pulled it out of the closet and updated it by faux-painting it with the same wall paint to give it a nice beachy look.

Two great friends blessed me with the mermaid and turtle decor pieces and the bedroom was complete (at least for now)!  Anyone who knows me knows that it will constantly change and items will get new items to make it even beachier over time.  I’m so happy I brightened up the space and now have my coastal beach bedroom for guests.  I’m still debating about painting the two dark pieces so stay tuned in for updated looks on another blog.  coastal-beach-bedroom

My mom and sister were just here visiting so my mom was given the new beachy room to enjoy.

My husband and I love the beach.  Although, the water is too cool for me in the winter, we can still enjoy laying in the sand and soaking in the rays.  We try to go at least once a week in the summer to soak in the rays and lounge in the warm water.  It is so relaxing and it inspired this week’s blog.

 

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Yard Sale Coffee Table to French Country Treasure

If there’s one thing I have learned in the past five years it’s never, EVER pass on a solid wood piece of furniture that has lots of design if you have a place for it in your home.  Over my years of having a furniture painting business, I would specifically look for things that had character and “shabby” potential.  I just happen to love that look and if you are into repurposing, it also sells very well in our Palm Beach area as it fits in with a beachy look as well.  About a decade or more ago, I discovered I really loved the Rachel Ashwell “Shabby Chic” look.  It was soft, feminine and looked like it had been around for a hundred years.

And, it is actually a look that is fairly easy to do.  Personally, I’m not a fan of dark wood.  I’ve learned that the lighter the furniture, the less you see dust!  Yes, I have replaced brand new dark wood pieces that I bought with thrift store finds to paint because I just dislike seeing all that dust every day.  (That will probably be the best tip of this blog.)  Buy light-colored furniture pieces or paint what you have light!  You will spend a lot less time dusting.

While shopping garage sales one Saturday morning, I found this medium-colored solid wood coffee table.  To be honest, it was pretty ugly.  But, I loved the curvy legs and intricate design on the sides and legs and it was $15.  SOLD!

Yard Sale Coffee Table $15

I brought it home and decided to get some chalk paint out.  I gave it a couple coats covering the entire piece in a soft white chalk paint that I made from latex paint, some Plaster of Paris and water.  There are hundreds of recipes for chalk paint on Pinterest.  Here is one.  http://inmyownstyle.com/2012/08/testing-1-2-3-versions-of-chalk-paint.html

You can also splurge on the Annie Sloan version of the chalk paint or Lowes now also has a chalk paint that they can mix to any color.  That is a nice option I recently discovered.  This is what the Lowes chalk paint can looks like.   It is great to paint with and I use a nice 1.5″ brush.  I have learned that buying a more expensive brush will make your painting jobs easier.  The right tools are a must!  Instead of buying that cheap $3 brush, get the $9 one.  You will get a lot more use of out it, but you should clean it very well after each use with warm, soapy water.  Rinse it well!  You will have a much more polished product in the end.

It will most likely take at least two coats of the chalk paint to cover over a dark wood piece.  It helps to lightly sand with a fine grit sandpaper in between coats to make the surface nice and smooth.  (This is not required but will leave a smoother surface.)  Wipe with a dry clean cloth to get the residue off before starting the next coat.  Finally I waxed the entire piece with Johnson Paste Wax.  Rub it on with clean, soft rag.  Let it sit for a few minutes (see directions on the can) and then buff off with another soft, clean cloth.  It gives is a matte finish that will protect the paint.

Here is the finished coffee table in my family room.

After a project is finished – the beach is always calling!

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