‘Propping’ for Victoria Vintage Expo: A RetroTable Makeover

If you’ve been following along then you will remember all the DIYing that went into ‘propping’ for Audrey Would!’s booth at last year’s Victoria Vintage Expo. If you missed all the frenzy, there was…

(1) A pine bookcase that got Hollywood Glammed!

Pine Cabinet B&A

(2) A piano bench that jumped on the glam safari, too!

Piano Bench B&A

(3) And a little side table that was given a redo.

Side Table B&A

This year Audrey will be back, top of the stairs again in Booth #38, and will have one more DIY prop to introduce.

I paid $7.00 for this little table and all its well-loved retro beauty…

DIY Retro Table Makeover - Before

Then subjected it to the bliss of semi-gloss black paint!

DIY Retro Table Makeover - After

You will find this refreshed piece at the Vintage Fair among Audrey’s booth mix. This year we have a few layout tweaks along with all the sparkle and glam of last year’s look. To see where this mod table fits why not drop by?

Have you marked the dates? September 26 and 27 at the Crystal Gardens in Victoria – see you there!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!



A Chic New Look With Country Chic Paint!

I thrifted this sad little table almost a year ago; you might remember this shot I shared back then of my rescue piece. The lamp, however, was SO left behind!

Leather Topped End Table 'Before'

Overall the table was in pretty rough shape, other than the leather top. When my daughter Kaleigh saw it she wanted to make it hers – after a DIY of course! 😉 She wanted it black, I wasn’t so sure, and she insisted the vintage knobs needed to go. Huh?

I found replacement vintage knobs at General Salvage early in the game.

Replacement Knobs

That’s basically where the DIY was left.

Fast forward to Country Chic Paint, a new quality chalk paint local to Duncan, and suddenly this table was front of mind!

Country Chic Paint (1)

With the leather top to consider, I wasn’t too keen on extra sanding and priming, and with this paint I could leave out both! Country Chic Paint requires little to no prep, has no VOCs, is near odorless and dries quickly. Bonus!! I think you know where I’m going with this.

One can of Liquorice coloured Country Chic Paint for the makeover!

Country Chic 'Liquorice' Chalk Paint

Before I could begin I had to do a little prep. Some gluing and repairs were needed where one spindle had broken away from the table base.

Leather Top End Table Repairs

And because the table was in such tough shape I actually did do some pre-sanding to smooth the rough patches and edges a little.

Leather Top End Table - Sanding Prep

The table also had a glossy finish on it,  so a light sanding helps the paint stick. Priming is actually recommended for certain surfaces like mahogany, but I opted out of the priming because of the darker colour it was being painted. I wasn’t worried about bleed through from resins in the wood, but I’ve had that misfortune in the past. More on that here!

I also protected the leather top by covering it with paper and taping it off. I made sure the paper went over the gold leaf tooling because I was worried the tape might pull the gold off.

Leather Top End Table - Tabletop Prep 2

The last thing I did was raise the table on pushpins. This is a great trick for painting right to the bottom of the legs!


I used a synthetic bristle paintbrush, and ended up cutting the handle off because it kept getting in the way of painting the lower shelf!

Leather Top Table Makeover - Synthetic Paint Brush

The paint was a dream to work with. It went on easily, dried quickly and no lumps were left behind. The best part… no sanding needed between coats!

Leather Top End Table - 1st & 2nd Coats Paint

I actually liked the look after the first coat – some of the original brown was peeking through, but Kaleigh wasn’t game. She also didn’t want me to do any distressing – one of the very things chalk paint is so awesome for! After the second coat I let the paint dry overnight, and then applied the finishing wax. All the waxes are made up of bees wax and other natural oils. No solvents!

I applied natural coloured wax first as a protective layer, and here you can see the waxy shine next to the unwaxed chalky surface.

Leather Top Table - Wax Coats

I used the antiquing wax for a second round because I wanted to tone down the black of the liquorice. The antiquing wax did the trick adding just the hint of brown I was hoping for. If you compare the bottom table image to the one above it you can see the difference.

One of the reasons for this tutorial is to demonstrate that chalk paint is versatile. It is commonly used for antiquing, distressing and giving pieces an aged look, but as you can see it is also great for a shiny finished look!

Here’s a look at the stages.


Leather Top Table Makeover - Before

Chalk Paint applied, but no wax:

Leather Top Table Makeover - In Progress - Chalk Paint Only

Antiquing wax applied and leather top treated with leather conditioner.

Leather Top Table - After 011

Notice how the liquorice colour pulls out the black tooling detail in the border and makes it pop?

Here’s a closer look…

Leather Top Table - After 076

In the lower left corner you can also see the brownish hue of the antiquing wax along the beveled edge of the table.

What do you think? Are you ready for a brandy??

Leather Top Table - After 074

Thank you Country Chic Paint for introducing me to your product!

And thank YOU for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use! 🙂


Curb Appeal. It’s ‘For You’, not just ‘For Sale’!

You hear so much about curb appeal in today’s world of home staging, a slower real estate market, and of course, on every social media and home improvement channel going! Don’t get me wrong, curb appeal is an absolute must if you are selling, but what about if you’re not?

This is where I notice the little touches are often overlooked. You know how it is, coming and going on a daily basis and suddenly things disappear?

Enter my Dad’s home.

Dad's House Lanterns - Before

It’s hard to see in this shot, but the house lanterns are brass and badly pitted. Once Dad was on board to let me give them a quick refresh, he had them down before I could take my usual ‘before’ shots. That’s just the way he works!! 🙂

Here are some close-ups in preparation for the quick makeover.

Before - Lanterns

Before - House Lanterns

See what I mean about pitted?

There was also a set of house numbers by the main door needing some TLC, too.

Before - House Numbers

Ignore the GRAPES lettering, there’s nothing sour about this DIY, lol!

Love projects with my Dad – he set everything up so all I had to do was arrive and start painting… since this was my idea, after all! 😉

Here’s a little peek at the project in progress…

After - Lanterns

After - House Numbers

I used two variations of Rust-Oleum flat black spray paint.

Rustoleum Flat Black Spray Paint

I started off with the Universal paint & primer in one. I used the whole can to do all three lanterns and the house numbers, so I think it provided great coverage, and it definitely went on very smooth. I used the Painters Touch for the second coat and a few touch-ups here and there, but this time I only used half a can.

Here’s a look at the ‘afters’ with everything back in place.

Lanterns - After

Lanterns - After

Sharp, right?

Lanterns, House Numbers - After

Notice the doorbell? When I left, Dad painted that too! Way to go, Dad!!

In this overall shot, it’s hard to see the difference…

Dad's Lanterns - After

But when you get up close and personal there’s no comparison!

So my point is just a reminder that the little things in everyday living matter. Take the time for basic upkeep, and enjoy your home while you’re in it! Trust me, there’ll be lots of other projects if the day ever comes to sell, that you’ll be happy you stayed on top of these! And no, Dad’s not selling!

I have to say, my Dad is a master at staying on top of the little things. There’s never too much out of place, or needing to be done. Yah, that’s him scouting for weeds!!

Do you have any warm weather projects on the go? Any that you’ve scratched off your list of ‘to do’? And how about you, do you agree, it’s better to love your home while you’re in it??

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller

A Mini Porch Repair… Curb Appeal Love!

Removing Stain by Power Washing

Not sure if you remember, but back when I shared our DIY BBQ Pad project I mentioned another project that was on our ‘to do’ list. A little porch repair…

We had to wait out the weather (like 3 months worth of waiting!) before we could get started, since staining was involved. Finally, this weekend some good weather lined itself up with our ‘spare’ time, and we were able to get at it.

Here’s a look at the actual repair we needed to make.

Porch Repair Project

The bottom step needed to be replaced, and while we were at it we wanted to restain the porch, too.

Our neighbour caught wind of this project and offered us the use of his power washer. He also gave me a quick lesson on how to use it.

Removing Stain by Power Washing

I only power washed the decking, because the boards for the step were being completely replaced.

And then our neighbour lent us his belt sander to finish the job. We have a little sander, but he was convinced his was the better tool to get the job done!

Removing Stain with a Belt Sander

Have I mentioned that we have pretty awesome neighbours?

Before hubs did the sanding he dealt with removing the boards on the step.

Repairing a Porch

The nails were pretty heavy duty, so this was the toughest part of the whole thing, otherwise I would’ve tried to tackle it myself!

While he was doing this part, I stained the underside and edges of the new boards for the step.

Stained Boards

I wanted them to have a chance to dry before hubs needed to install them.

Here’s a look at the fully sanded deck-top.

Sanded Porch Prepped to Stain

I jumped in and took over the staining at this point. I wanted to give the whole porch a fresh coat of stain before the new boards were nailed down.

Here’s a look at the stain job.

Freshly stained porch

I’m not sure what those streaks are in the photo, because the porch doesn’t actually look streaky to the eye! You can see here that I gave the frame of the step a coat of stain as well.

Once the stain was dry – and trust me, it didn’t take long in the heat – hubs nailed the new boards into place.

Installing stair treads

And then I finished them off with a couple of coats of stain.

Cloverdale Deck Stain

This is the stain we used, which was in the basement when we moved in, and is what our landlord used on all the porches of this home.

Here’s a look back at where we started…

Porch Repair Project

And how the porch looks now.

Cloverdale Stained Porch

A quick repair job, and a new coat of stain gives this porch a refreshed look. Another ‘to do’ scratched off the list!

And did you notice the BBQ is out and in full use? Just thought I’d mention that! 😉

What did you do this weekend? Did you play in the sun, or did you tackle a home project, too? If you’re like me, tackling a home project out in the sun is playing in the sun!

You know, it’s the little things such as a mini project like this that make all the difference to your curb appeal, and the statement your home makes. If you look closely you’ll see this porch is not made with treated lumber, and in fact, doesn’t even have a cement pad to sit on. Heck, it’s not even sitting perfectly level. But with the step repaired, and the fresh coat of stain, those aren’t the things you notice. What you see is a little porch that looks loved and cared for. And that is what makes a home feel welcoming, what curb appeal is all about!


All Photos by Sheila Zeller


Giving Back by Vancouver Island Stagers, Stylists & ReDesigners Group

Have you heard of the Vancouver Island Stagers, Stylists and ReDesigners group? Just think, VISSR!

VISSR is a group of business women on Southern Vancouver Island who meet once a month as colleagues and collaborative professionals. VISSR is a mix of home stagers, interior stylists and redesigners, and many offer a slice of all three services.

Recently VISSR initiated a volunteer redesign project for the Bridges for Women Society in Victoria.

Bridges for Women is a not-for-profit, charitable agency focussing on employment services for women with a background of abuse or trauma.

 Source: Bridges for Women Society

Bridges mission, taken directly from their website, is this:

Bridges is a gutsy, innovative community agency. Our employment training and supportive programs inspire women impacted by violence or abuse, to reclaim their lives and build economic security. Bridges draws on its extensive knowledge of the impacts of abuse on employability, to provide education, training and consulting to community agencies, employers, and government.

As VISSR members, we volunteered our professional skills to redesign two classrooms along with support from our clients and local businesses who donated materials and/or trade labour. We had a narrow budget to work with, which had to stretch far… Without the unified support of VISSR members, our clients, and participating local businesses, the scope of these classroom transformations would not have been possible.

Imagine taking a classroom setting from this…


Photo: Diana Zinck

to this…


Photo: SZInteriors

to THIS!


Photo: Diana Zinck

From this…


Photo: SZInteriors

to this…


Photo: SZInteriors

to THIS!


Photo: Diana Zinck

And from this…


Photo: Diana Zinck

to this…


Photo: SZInteriors

to THIS!


Photo: Diana Zinck

And all on a dime.

What went into the redesign?

  1. Two new paint colours
  2. A chair rail around the whole room
  3. Custom made bulletin boards
  4. White board paint (dry erase) painted directly on the wall to replace wall-mounted white board
  5. Oak cabinet, baskets and decorative boxes for organization and storage
  6. Artwork and incidentals
  7. A folding screen room divider in place of empty storage lockers acting as room dividers
  8. Privacy film over the windows
  9. And of course, volunteer time and energy

Here’s a closer look…

The custom bulletin boards were a huge part of this redesign. Collages made by the students are a significant component of the Bridges program, and displaying them is equally important.

So the collages (blurred for confidentiality) went from being displayed like this…

 Photo: SZInteriors

To this…

Photo: Pauline Dueck

On walls like this!

Photo: Diana Zinck

The frames are painted in the same blue as the Bridges for Women Society’s branded blue! All have been prehung so they’re ready to feature each collage as a presented work of art.

The bulletin boards were definitely the pride of this project with their functional form underscoring the significance of their presence!

The wall of windows was another key consideration. Obtaining privacy without the loss of natural light was the hope, and to accomplish this, opaque film for the windows was the solution. But our budget was the obstacle! And thankfully, in the end donations came through.

 This is a closer look at the windows before the privacy film was installed.

Photo: SZInteriors

The existing blinds provided the privacy function, but with them closed, the natural light was lost. And even with them tilted open, the light was still filtered out a lot, leaving the overhead fluorescents in charge!

Here’s a look at the windows AFTER the privacy film was installed.

Photo: SZInteriors

There was no leftover film to spare, and even the little scrap pieces didn’t go to waste. The birds were drawn free-hand and made with the leftover pieces!

And here, some (but not all) of the VISSR members who came together, and brought this vision to reality.

Photo: Pauline Dueck

(Back Row, L to R): Michaela Starling, Carell-Ayne Whalen, Diana Zinck, Tracey Jones, Josée Lalonde

(Front Row, L to R): [Me], Stacey Kaminiski, Pauline Dueck

For a list of all VISSR members, click here.

Bridges for Women…

Photo: SZInteriors

Break the cycle. Build the future.

Photo: Pauline Dueck

Thank you so much to Bridges for Women Society for the opportunity to give back by doing what we do best!

And a heartfelt thank you to these local business for their invaluable support. Without you these transformations just wouldn’t have been possible:

You made it possible for us to change up this space…

 Photo: Diana Zinck

To look like this!

Photo: Diana Zinck

And the second classroom to look like this…

Photo: Diana Zinck

And this!!!

Photo: Diana Zinck

And thank you to SHAW TV Daily for the coverage! For those of you who missed the news clip, click here to view. It only takes a few minutes to watch!

To see more photos of the project you can visit our VISSR site here, and The Stage Coach here.

Have you pitched in on a project lately? I’d love to hear about it!

It’s always so gratifying to lend a hand, and I really enjoyed being a part of this project. I hope you enjoyed this overview and got to feel for a moment how incredible it was to be able to give back in this way.

 Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller unless otherwise indicated. Please link and credit if you choose to use!



A Belated Reveal: Golf Course Staff Area

Way back in December I wrote about volunteering some of my time/services for the Ladysmith Golf Course clubhouse renovation (here).

The project is now complete, and I’m able to share the before/after photos specific to one area in particular where I was able to assist.

Here’s a look at the staff area before it all began.

The staff area is at the back of the room facing the front counter where customers are served… and this was the first impression impact!

The golf course is run by volunteers, and the budget for the overall inside renos was tight. The whole inside was basically gutted and redone, so it was important to be careful how money was spent.

Here’s a look at the reno in progress. The fridge was rerouted (to the left), and a new coffee service station was installed (to the right). The cash register doesn’t live on this counter, so just ignore that it’s there.

The open space between the fridge and coffee station is all that’s available for the new staff table and chairs. And this is where I came in.

Do you remember my very rough sketch of the space slated for the table and chairs? Oh, and that the building is round. So not only is the space very small, but it’s quirky to fit furniture into as well.

Well, quirks aside, here’s a look at the table and chairs finally set into place.

The fridge was shuffled as far left as it could go, but because of a newly installed baseboard heater, which was also fit as snugly into place as possible, it couldn’t go any further left. The new coffee service station is fixed in place, so there’s no room for movement there.

So the only option was to take good measurements, and be able to trust them when I was sourcing the table set. And trust me, it literally came down to the inch. On top of the physical limitations of the space, options were further limited once budget was factored into the equation.

But it all worked out perfectly in the end.

Here’s one more look at the before and after…

There’s enough room to push the inside chair back, and get in and out with ease, which was one of the things to consider.

And isn’t closed storage a great way to go? So much tidier for that first impression impact on the new customers who’ll be coming out to golf this year!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!

Happy New Year… With A Little Gold!

Happy New Year! I’ve been enjoying my little break, but missing all of you, and I’m super excited to be back!

And so I wanted to get back at it and start 2012 off just right by revealing the mysterious project I was working on for Kaleigh (mentioned here), and the vintage item I picked up for her for Christmas (mentioned here). Do you remember the mirror that I spray painted gold (mentioned here and revealed here)?

Well, I was also spraying out this little glass-top table at the same time with the same gold paint.

I spied this fun piece at ReStore in Victoria! The glass top, which I’ve removed for the painting, was in perfect condition. No chips or cracks, but the brass… well, it had seen better days.

See what I mean?

These are the main areas that needed some refinishing TLC.

But honestly, the whole piece was in need of a makeover!

At first I was tempted to just spray the table without taking it apart. But then I knew I would kick myself later for taking a shortcut.

So I dismantled the top portion, and prepped all the pieces with a good scrub-down.

The solid brass knobs that held the ring in place were in pretty rough shape, and I thought Brasso would do the trick.

Do you remember the cleaning ordeal of the brass hinges on Kaleigh’s repurposed TV stand? (Read about it here and here) Yup, it was a two-day ordeal, and I could see I was headed there again. But this time I wasn’t buying in! So I decided to paint them out along with all the other pieces.

Want to see a little glimpse of the assembly line?

See the mirror in the background?

And here’s the brass knobs being defaced with paint! Gasp!!!

I don’t think they look so bad, and actually, probably look better in the end by matching the other parts and pieces perfectly.

I gave this table 2 good coats, and then some further top-ups in a few key spots.

And here’s how it turned out.

Notice the little gold dish with the chocolates? That’s the vintage piece I mentioned earlier, but couldn’t reveal until now!

Here’s a glimpse of the table beside the serving tray I made in the Fall Pinterest Challenge (here), and the pine chest that we recovered (here) in gold damask fabric chosen by Kaleigh (revealed here).

And in place with Kaleigh’s favorite band, AFI.

Still on the to-do list… panels for the windows!

See what a little paint can do? You’d never know this table had significant rust patches and pit marks, would you?

I hope your year is off to a great start!

It’s about coming home… If you want a remarkable space that tells your story, contact me to see how we can help!

Did you enjoy this post? By subscribing to my RSS Feed you’ll receive each new post without missing a beat! And you can find more posts here… If a thought comes to mind, comments are always appreciated and I read them all. I’d love to hear from you…



Volunteering Helps Make Things Happen!

I’ve been lending a hand to the Ladysmith Golf Club with some consultations, and a bit of this and that. You might remember the exterior makeover. Members have been working very hard through the Fall to give the inside of the clubhouse an update. As well as offering some design advice and providing a colour consultation, I did a little sourcing for them too.

That’s always fun, don’t you think?

I sourced this mirror at Home Sense for half price. You can just see a glimpse of it in the bathroom.

This club house is quite tiny, and there was very limited wall space to hang a mirror. An oval would have worked as well, but because the light fixture is round, and the basin is round-ish, I stayed with a true round shape. Oh, did I mention the clubhouse is round? Seriously. Another reason to ‘mirror’ the round shape here!

Another key piece for the revamped club house was a bar height table and stool set for the staff. They wanted bar height so the staff would be able to keep an eye on the course when sitting down. The only catch was the allocated space for it. Let’s just say, there wasn’t much area to work with, so not just any set would fit.

Here’s my rough sketch of the area from a plan view, meaning I didn’t include the height in the measurements.

The grayed out areas are dead space… Do you remember, I mentioned the club house is round? Well this is what happens when you put square fixtures into round spaces. You end up with unusable space like this.

Here’s a quick look at the area. I haven’t been in to take my own photos, so this is the only one I have of this spot, but it will give you the idea.

To the left is a full-size fridge, and this new cabinet area to the right will be the coffee counter plus storage. The till doesn’t sit here, it sits on the counter you see in the foreground. So that big gap in between is where the bar height table and stools will sit.

As you can see from the sketch, the usable space is tight, and especially when you factor in having enough room to push a stool back. So the obvious option for a table was to try to find something that was… can you guess?

You got it… round!

The upgrades to the clubhouse were being made on a limited budget, and by volunteer labour. So my sourcing began with Used Cowichan, Nanaimo and Victoria, as well as Kijiji and Craig’s List. There were a surprising number of options… until the measurements factored in.

And then I came across this ad on Used Victoria.

After a bit of communication tag, I was able to obtain the table diameter and the stool measurements. One more visit to the club house for another look and to double-check the measurements, and the table set was a potential because it would fit the space. But it still had to be viewed for condition.

This is a mock-up of how it would fit in the space. Keep in mind that the table can snug over into more of the unusable space because it’s round.

There’s usually just one staff member working at a time, so the second stool won’t be used as much. You can see it’s a tight squeeze, but will fit.

Coordinating the viewing was another hurdle because with the table set in Victoria, which is an hour away for me, just popping in wasn’t an option. But after a week and a half I was able to set something up, and this past Thursday finally got to view the pieces in 3-D! They are solid rubberwood, in mint condition, and now sitting in my living room.

Here’s a look at the set in my living room.

What do you think?

I think given the limitations we were working with between space and budget, these are a score!

And soon they shall depart for their final destination! I can’t wait to see them in their new home 🙂

So if you still have Christmas shopping to do, or you are searching for something at a reasonable price, don’t overlook your 2nd-hand options. There are unbelievable deals to be found. And you know what, sometimes you can even find things being given away for free!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!

Vintage Dry Bar turned TV Cabinet: Reveal

I am so excited to finally be able to write this post! It’s been a journey, for sure, and I’ve definitely learned a lot along the way. What would I do without other blogs to refer to for guidance, trouble-shooting, encouragement… and most of all, to learn that I’m not alone when a project decides to show its challenging colours. Have I mentioned how much I love the blogging world?

This is where it all began, which I wrote about here.

Sitting in the FREE SHOPPING bay at the local waste management drop-off site.

And this is after all the hard work is done, but still needing the new knobs to be put on.

The colour in this shot is truer to how the cabinet actually looks than in the photos below.

This is how the story ends. Once a dry bar cabinet, now repurposed into a TV cabinet.

Sitting renewed and pretty in Kaleigh’s room. The cabinet really is more turquoise than this!

And the tip-up front that gave me so much trouble through the painting process now opens with a spring loaded magnet instead of having to lift the lid to release the original latch. This way Kaleigh can access her PVR when she’s watching TV, and hide it away when she’s not.

Kaleigh opted for just the 2 glass knobs, and didn’t want any knobs or pulls on the tip-up front. That’s why we had to use a spring loaded magnet.

I bet you’re wondering what the big repurposing deal was all about. It looks like just a simple paint job, new knobs and it’s good to go. But there was a whole lot more that went into this project than that…

So for those of you who might be interested, here’s a little breakdown. And if you’d rather skip this part, I just want to say, thank you for reading. Thank you for cheering me on and for encouraging me when I was so discouraged. Now that it’s all finished, I’m so glad we stuck with it – I couldn’t have done this without Kaleigh’s help, or Clemens’ (aka hubby’s 😉 ) either! And the best part is that Kaleigh LOVES her new cabinet 🙂

Prepping, priming, filling, sanding, painting, etc. – Oh yes there was trouble!

  • Original hardware was removed – holes had to be filled where hardware wasn’t going back – that was a lot of filling… and sanding
  • All hardware going back on had to be cleaned – I wrote about that ordeal here and here
  • Cabinet had to be saturated in TSP for a deep cleaning – it had years of built up grime stuck to it – a putty knife and Goo Gone were needed to remove a very stubborn, very stuck adhesive residue here
  • Used KILZ latex multipurpose stain blocker primer – found out later it didn’t work!
  • Applied 2 coats of BM Tropicana Cabana (matte) – all good so far
  • Then a final polyurethane clear gloss coat – NOOOOO! There was tannin bleed-through – I wrote about that setback here 

So the project had to be started over again – back to sanding everything down

  • And trying a different primer for stains – this time I used ZINSSER’S oil based Primer Sealer Stain Killer
    • TIP:  you can paint latex paint over an oil based primer, but not over an oil based paint
  • Round 2 – bought new Tropicana Cabana paint, this time in semi gloss – polyurenthane gloss wasn’t coming near this cabinet again!
    • TIP: semi gloss is a great finish for durability and some shine, but doesn’t show scratches & dents like a gloss
  • Tip-up drawer was not painting out well – I rolled – I brushed – I sanded – I brushed – I sanded some more – I brushed some more – it looked awful
  • Read that the paint might need thinning – bought FLOETROL to thin paint and help it spread
    • TIP: Floetrol really works! It made a HUGE difference in how my paint went on, and how the brush marks really did blend in with drying


  • Had to buy new screws for piano hinge – was hard to find the right size in brass
  • Rest of cabinet went back together like a dream!
  • The tip-up front used to latch closed, and you had to lift the lid to release the latch. With the TV on top this would be a problem. So we removed the latch and replaced it with 2 spring release magnets.
  • We had to drill a hole in the back for the PVR cords to go through – that was definitely the toughest part for us – we really didn’t want to make this hole, but it had to be done.
  • The screws for the replacement knobs were way too long because we opted not to use the mounting plate behind the knob – it took a few tries to find screws that would work
I’m sure there’s more, but this gives you an idea of what went on behind the scenes!
And now I’m working on my Pinterest Fall Challenge. Will you be doing something too?

Related Posts You Might Like To Read

Going for Gold… Inspiration for Kaleigh’s Room

DIY Project: Re-covering Lid of Pine Chest

DIY Project: Pine Chest Revealed

DIY: Sewing Up A Sea of Turquoise

DIY: Turquoise  Throw Pillows Revealed

 It’s about coming home… If you want a remarkable space that tells your story, contact me to see how we can help!

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Vintage Dry Bar to TV Cabinet: Almost There!

You’ve been so patient… and we’re almost there!

My repurposing project, a cabinet turned into a TV stand for Kaleigh that started back in in early September, and hit a few road bumps here and here, is on its final stretch. All the painting is as done as it’s going to be, the brass hardware as cleaned up as it’s going to get… and today was the moment of truth. We started to reassemble all the parts and pieces of the cabinet, and put it back together again. And I’m thrilled to say it went back together without a hitch. But remember, I also said this was a repurposing project – so that means we made some ‘structural’ changes to the piece, and changed the intention for its use.

So, way back when we started this project I said there was a story behind this piece that I couldn’t wait to tell…

Here’s the piece in its original form.

Looks like a standard cabinet, right?

But it’s not…

This cabinet is actually a dry bar… dry because there’s no sink.

But a bar because of this insert inside…

The insert is meant to hold glasses. It, along with the shelf you see, is covered in arborite – easy to wipe clean, and can withstand liquid spills 😉 And, note the locking mechanism in the center. Back in the day there was a time when alcohol was kept under lock and key!

And the bar itself is not as cumbersome as it looks to use.

Because the small front face is actually hinged to flip down.

And it has a catch to hold it closed when it’s flipped up…

Pretty cool isn’t it?

This piece is made of solid wood – maple, I think.

Check out the vintage hardware…

I love the hardware, but Kaleigh is not keen on it at all. In fact she has gone so far as to say it’s ugly. Seriously… what’s up with the perspective of our youth? 😉 If you look closely, you’ll see the two front doors also have locks in them. Definitely a dry bar!

So the story…

After all the yard work we did when we first moved in here, we had a bunch of organic waste to take to the local waste management drop-off. And it was with this trip that everything changed! After we dropped off all the weeds we pulled around to head out, and noticed the ‘FREE SHOPPING’ sign. Now you have to remember, this is basically the garbage dump, but in a managed kind of way! So we figured there was nothing to lose by taking a gander. This isn’t normally something we would do, but the more blogs I read, the more inspired I am to give this kind of ‘living on the edge’ a try! And I’m so glad we did.

Since the cabinet would be for Kaleigh’s TV, we had to check in first. So my hubby snapped a quick pic on his phone and sent it to her…

…while I called her to say, ‘Check your phone – are you interested in this cabint? I’ll paint it out, change it up, but would it work for you?’ I really thought the answer would be like, are you kidding? No! Mom, I can’t believe you’d bring something home from the dump. OMG!!!

But Kaleigh surprised me and her answer actually was, ‘Yah, sure. Why not.’

I have to be honest, the FREE SHOPPING was free for a reason! There wasn’t a whole lot I saw that day that I’d depart with… other than this vintage treasure. Honestly. Who throws things like this out? But then, who puts Cherner chairs beside a dumpster (read story here)? What caps this story is we barely navigated the cabinet’s exodus from the FREE store! For the little time that it took to pull our vehicle up and position it for loading, was all the time it took for someone else to be checking this piece out. Imagine their startled look when we scooped it up and loaded it in!

So that’s the story behind how we acquired this cabinet. And, oh yes, we cleaned it up big time. There were remnants of splintered glass, dried and super stuck residue from spilled who knows what, and of course years of built-up grime. What didn’t come with the cabinet were the keys for the three locks. Do you think I should return it?

Stay tuned. Tomorrow will be its make-over reveal. Here’s a little glimpse…

I can’t wait to show you the results!

What have you repurposed lately? Where did your piece come from? Are FREE pieces on the side of the road… or at the local dump an option for you?

Related Posts You Might Like To Read

DIY Distress: Repurposing A Cabinet Set-Back

Brass Part I: Are You Cleaning Plated or Solid?

Brass Part II: Cleaning Solid Brass Pieces

The Cherner Chair Story

It’s about coming home… If you want a remarkable space that tells your story, contact me to see how we can help!

Did you enjoy this post? By subscribing to my RSS Feed you’ll receive each new post without missing a beat! And you can find more posts here… If a thought comes to mind, comments are always appreciated and I read them all. I’d love to hear from you…