Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Thifted Console Makeover (Buh Bye, Tuscany)

As I mentioned, I have a sad dearth of "before" shots, since blogging my work wasn't really on my mind while I was working full-time for the Man.  Then again, "before" shots are supposed to look crappy, right?  Well, then, feast your eyes on this:

Of course it's not a before before, because I had already removed and trashed the Tuscan-inspired knobs from the doors and drawers.  I had also started sanding out the nicks and dings, but I did at least get one of the original Tuscan door grates into the photo.  Nice, eh? 

I picked this up at my local Salvation Army because the price was right (50% off Saturdays!  It almost feels like stealing).  It's not vintage or anything; it had a Pier 1 sticker on the back.  But it's short and shallow and therefore the perfect size to go next to my front door without imposing too much, since my front door opens directly into the living room.  Plus--storage!

The fluted detail at the corners adds personality, and the piece was pre-distressed with some nicks and pinholes that I left intact, so I knew a glaze would work well to highlight these bits.  I abhor shabby, but I love a good patina, so that was the goal.  I primed with Zissner's oil-based primer and then painted with some cheap BM paint (in Gray Timberwolf) with a smidge of Floetrol to help limit brushstrokes.  Yes, you can absolutely use latex paint over Zissner's oil-based primer!  Then I mixed the glaze with a tablespoon or so of walnut stain and applied/wiped strategically until I achieved just the right amount of dirty and faux timeworn.

Oh, to have an empty den again.   Don't get me wrong, I'm happier with this room furnished, but while it was empty, it sure was nice to have such a large, centrally located workspace.  Try to overlook the streaky console backing that you can see in this shot.  The backing was just some cheap, crappy chipboard that sucked up the glaze like a sponge.  It's not pretty, but once the shelf was installed, the cabinet was filled, and the doors were closed, I no longer felt the urge to do anything about it.

I wanted the finish to be durable and glass smooth, so I ended up doing about 4 coats of water-based poly (more on the top), roughing up between coats to ensure the smoothest finish possible.

I knew I wanted decorative sheet metal in the doors, so I visited my local orange big box and made sure to select something with holes small enough to obscure the rainbow of kid crap I knew I'd be stashing in this cabinet.  I could definitely do better on the drawer/door pulls, but I like the way these blend in and don't draw too much attention, and they were really the only viable option at the Big Orange.  I can always swap them out later.  They'll do for now.

I cut the sheet metal to size and used a staple gun to attach it to the insides of the doors.  To hide the staples, I mitered and nailed on this cute mini trim from Michaels.  Little round circles with little round circles!  Serendipity!

Oh yeah--and the lamp is a Salvation Army find too.  Hideous in wrought iron, it got new life with a quick coat of white spray paint. 

Walls are--you guessed it!  Manchester Tan!  Bonus points if you can identify all of the unkempt children's games behind these doors.

Art, clockwise from top--Dolan Geiman, lorisworld, and Matte Stephens, all via Etsy.  Chachkies from Salvation Army.  It's a bit of a habit.  What do you think?


  1. Would you help me find some etsy artsy stuff for my house? :)

  2. Um, yes! You know I'd love to!

  3. Clicked over from circle of moms specifically because of this piece & am so glad I did! Love your blog!

  4. Thanks so much, Angela! Especially since I'm still an insecure newbie with this blogging thing, your comment means a lot!