We have officially said goodbye to Winter and hello to Spring!! And if you are anything like me the warm weather means it’s time to spend my weekends at the flea market looking for those one of a kind pieces you can up-cycle. So as I gear up for another Spring & Summer of hunting for those treasures I can’t bare to live without for one more minutes I figured I would share a DIY up-cycle I recently did on a pair of entry way tables and mirrors.
(Sweet Tea Photo)
So like most of us I have to learn to decorate on a budget (which by the way is completely unrealistically set by my other half.) Even though we move to new duty stations everything few years (Thank you to the U.S. Army) I always learn where the best flea market finds are as soon as possible. After awhile you learn where the best finds are whether that be a yard sale, thrift store, or flea market. Oh yea and I am not afraid to travel if it’s worth it sometimes it may be an hour drive but if I can catch some awesome finds it’s well worth the trip.
(Sweet Tea Photo)
So how do you find these one of a kind pieces? You have to open your mind and see past the furniture or treasures that someone has cast away as trash. Be creative try to see what the piece could be not what it is. There is nothing a little chalk paint and sand paper can’t fix in my book. You can turn someone else junk into a pot of gold if you put enough love into it. Anyone can buy a piece of furniture but when you take something old and used and create something beautiful you will be hooked (and it’s all up hill from there.)
So these end tables were honestly not a huge project for me. The mirrors were a little more work since I had to tape off the glass and paint the fine details of the design. However the steps were exactly the same. Even those this wasn’t one of the harder DIY’s I have done the simplicity of the white and added distress made these one of those projects I wish I could have kept for myself.
I made sure to clean my end tables and mirrors to ensure I remove all the dust and dirt that can come associated with a curb-find. (Soap and water with a damp rag) works perfectly. (If the item is laminate then you need to slightly sand it with 150 or 220 grit sand paper, then clean it.) Also always remove handles or pulls when working on furniture you don’t want to get paint on them and trust me you will if you don’t remove them ahead of time.
Next I made sure to use a clean and a dry paint brush dry (Only use a damp brush when working with fabric). I applied two coats of Dixie Belle Paint http://www.dixiebellepaint.com (allowing it to dry at least two hours in between coats.) Now you can use any brand paint or color you prefer to work with. This was just something I had on hand to review and it was thick and was a quick dry paint so it worked perfectly for my project deadline.
Once you have allowed the piece to dry completely you can distress it. (This is my favorite part) Depending on your style or desired look will reflect in the end product. You an always slightly distress and then add more until satisfied. I took 150-220 grit sand paper and gently ran it across all the edges and curves of the tables.
Once that was dry I took some Dixie Bell Clear Coat Finish and applied it over the entire piece. It comes in 8, 16, and 32 oz. jars and a little goes a long way.
Finally if you want you can apply a glaze at this point. Use a clean and dry paint brush to apply the glaze.
I love to use a specific brand of chalk paint when working on vintage treasures. One that is universal and can be used on almost any surface…wood, metal, glass, laminate, ceramic, and even fabric! Now in some cases you may need to go for a layered look. In my situation these pieces were dark enough that I didn’t need a base color to add to my steps. However this is not always the case. So here are some steps to take if you need to achieve a layer look on you flea market find.
(Sweet Tea Photo)
- First you want to apply a darker color as your base coat.
- Once that has completely dried you will want to apply your lighter of the two colors over the first color.
- Next time to sand…sand….sand. I would recommend using a 150 to 220 grit sand paper same as I used above in the DIY tutorial. Now this is where you can get creative. Depending on your desired look you can sand just enough to where the base color does through in some spots and in others sand all the way down to the original piece. This will give you a one of a kind unique look to the piece itself.
(Sweet Tea Photo)
Now remember when you head off to the flea markets take plenty of cash (Budget’s usually fly out the window at this point) always take a truck big enough to fit well everything lol! Also don’t be afraid to negotiate prices they don’t want to load it up and take it home almost as much as you don’t want to leave without it (So haggle nicely.)
Here is the link to the Dixie Belle Paint Co. if you haven’t tried them I would get some sample sizes and see what you think. I have been more than satisfied with all their products and I can’t wait to try more.
**A super special thanks to Sweet Tea for letting me use your pictures! They’re awesome!**
Check out here site https://www.facebook.com/SweetTeaKS/?fref=ts