Ever have the perfect piece of décor in mind, but finding it on the store shelf is another question? Well, I say, if you can’t find it… make it! Yes, roll up your sleeves and do-it-yourself!
After just having bought our middle child a beautiful set of bunk beds for his room and rearranging his furniture, there was a corner I was completely dissatisfied with. It felt too cramped, the height of the furniture didn’t work with the tall bunk bed, and it just didn’t flow with the rest of the room. My husband liked that set up of the room the best so we left it. But that pesky corner just ate at me until I realized what the room was missing… a creative corner.
A chalkboard would be the perfect item for that space so I began my search. Here’s what I knew I wanted: a sizeable chalkboard encompassed by a chunky frame, and in white or orange. Oh… and I didn’t want to pay a lot for it. So I went to the major craft stores, I looked at the superstore’s chalkboards and frames, Craigslist, IKEA, and nothing. I found nothing that struck my fancy and that would pull the room together. So… I found a piece that worked with my size and frame requirements and I decided to give it a makeover.
DIY projects don’t have to be scary. And depending how detailed they are, a simple painting project like this can be done in anywhere from 4-48 hours. (This timing is because of dry time, not actual work time.) And in this case, the supplies were minimal: 2 cans of spray paint, painters (or masking) tape, small bottle of craft paint, paintbrush or mini foam roller, and a drill/screwdriver to take off the back.
This piece would’ve been lovely with its aged finished if I was looking for red. And I loved the partly rusted faux decorative corner brackets so I wanted to make sure I kept those rusty. All it required was fully taping the faux brackets off with masking tape and I was ready to paint!
The spray paint I purchased was white + primer in a satin finish. I planned on only needing to do two coats. However, the red kept bleeding through which required an extra coat (hence the 2 cans of spray paint). Since the frame was not a smooth, slick finish, I didn’t do any prep work to it. However, depending on your project, you may want to do an online search of the best way to prep a piece of furniture, frame, etc. to get the best finish. Most projects would require a light to medium sanding.
The white frame looked nice, but it looked a little bland just being white. To make it ‘pop’, I painted the inner most section of the frame orange to match the orange accents in our son’s room. I used a small $1.29 bottle of craft paint for this. I applied two coats of the orange with a paintbrush. However, it looked more brush streaked than I hoped so I did a third coat with a mini foam roller and it did the trick! (Make sure to tape off the edges that you have already painted so as not to mess up your project.)
Needless to say, I was thrilled with my completed project. It was everything I was looking for. I just had to think creatively about each piece I passed in the store. If the piece I wanted didn’t exist, how could I makeover another piece to fit my purpose? And I love seeing how I was able to transform a piece into my own personal creation!
Next time you’re looking for that “perfect” piece, think about how you could do-it-yourself! It may end up better (and less expensive) than you expected!