So I came across this weathered, rust stained scrap piece of 2×4, thoughtlessly discarded and left for… well, scrap.
See, it even comes complete with the dust and grime from where it was left to decay! But I saw beyond all this. To me there was a natural beauty here that was just being wasted away.
DIY inspired, I came to its rescue and cleaned up the 2×4, then gave it a quick coat of Annie Sloan’s Light Wax.
It’s hard to see the shine, but if you look back at the rescue photo, you can see a little more spit and polish here. Don’t you think it looks posh with black?
I was pretty proud of my rescued 2×4.
And then my brother popped over, and nearly laughed me right out of my own home! He was not on board (pun intended!) with my affection for this rusted, aged chunk of wood. He did not see it as a thing of beauty. Not. At. All!
So the challenge was on!
I went back and forth with ideas… like making a small shelf mounted on tiny corbels, or a base for a collection of bud vases, or cutting it down and creating book ends… and finally I decided on a tealight valet… sounds pretty uptown, right?
To do this all you need is a 1-1/2″ spade bit to make the holes.
This is the one we bought.
Looks kind of intimidating, especially with the ‘Dare Devil’ graphic. Evil almost!
I got my Mr. to do the heavy lifting on this part. Here he’s doing a test run on an actual scrap piece of 2×4… notice, it’s white?
Totally recommend that you try a few test holes first, because evil it nearly was.
This bit is bossy and tries to take over the show, grabbing and pulling where it wants to go!
Check out the chunks of wood it chews up! If you’re not careful, it will spin the drill right out of your hand!
But I have to say, Dare Devil does make a fairly clean hole.
I lightly sanded the inside and top edges of these holes to remove the rough wood the spade bit left behind.
And then gave each hole a clear coat of Varathane…
Just to give them a finishing touch… even though you won’t see them.
Looks pretty rough here, but do you see where I’m going?
Once the Varathane was dry I did another coat of Annie Sloan Light Wax, and this one I actually applied a little heavier.
See how smooth and shiny it looks?
I wanted the rusty marks and the grain to really come alive, and the light from the candles to bounce off the surface…
From one end…
To the other.
I really like the way the rust marks stand out against the weathered wood.
Isn’t the grain pretty?
I originally planned to use tea lights set in clear cases instead of the metal ones. But, I discovered that the clear cases are slightly larger than the 1-1/2″ spade bit, and they’re a lot deeper than the metal cases. So if you’re planning to try this DIY, I thought you should know this before hand.
So what do you think? Is this an old scrap piece of wood to you, or do you see a thing of reclaimed beauty, too?
Thanks for stopping by!
Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!