I’ve experienced great joy as of late finding old furniture at Goodwill and giving it a re-do moment in my apartment. I read a few articles about how poorly made composite furniture was when we moved in to this apartment and ever since we have been phasing out our college era stuff and hunting for very cheap fixer upper pieces made from real deal wood that I can fix up.
I have always loved hunting at thrift stores, so furniture is no exception. I love a good power tool and there isn’t anything an even coat of spray paint cant fix.
Cameron and I are always looking for somewhere to set things (leashes, keys, mail, dog toys, etc..) when we leave and enter our house, so when I saw this old dingy table in the clearance section of goodwill I saw potential in its size and height.
The table was five dollars and a friend who was shopping with me thought I was straight out of my mind. He couldn’t imagine this ugly grandma table fitting in to our boho living room, the fake stained glass tulip really put him over the top.
Seeing beyond what it was and into what it could be, there were a few key things that I liked:
1. the size and shape, it was perfect for an entry way!
2. The compartment with a door, and the open section in the middle where a basket could be placed.
3. the little bronze daisy on the door handle.
4. the price, duh!
Here is what I used to update this table:
2 cans of “fossil” spray paint / primer / orbital sander and coordinating sand paper / distilled vinegar / toothpaste / scrub brush / polyurethane (optional) / new glass panel (I measured and used an old picture frame!) / lysol wipes / screwdriver / drop cloth / safety eye-wear
Here is what I did step by step:
First: I had to clean the piece and remove the door. I took it outside and wiped the entire thing down with lysol wipes. Any residue from the previous owner will be sanded off, so clean thoroughly but not vigorously 😉 I then used my screwdriver to remove anything metal. This included the door hinges and hardware.
Second: To clean the hardware (it was a little gummed up and old looking) I took some toothpaste and a scrub brush and went to town. I then (toothpaste still on) dropped each piece into a jar full of vinegar, an hour later I rinsed it and they all looked brand new. I’ll be honest the process grossed me out a little but was well worth the result.
Third: I sanded away, using long sweeping motions and little to no pressure. This really cleans up the wood and evens it out in preparation for spray painting. I then used primer and sprayed one even coat, making sure to hit nooks and crannies and also prime the frame of the door.
Fourth: Then it was time to paint. I used two bottles in total because I didn’t want any patchy areas where the color was uneven. As always, I made sure to spray from an arms distance in a well ventilated area. This process takes patience, dry time, and many even coats.
Fifth: If you want a glossy finish, I recommend adding a thin coat of polyurethane. If you choose to do this step, let it cure for a few days before moving on.
Fifth: After everything was dry and painted, I attached the metal hardware and put the door back on. I gave it a few days to dry *just* in case and then attached a new glass panel to the door to finish it up!
I hope sharing this process with you guys inspires you to give something in a thrift shop a fresh coat of paint! I hope to share more home improvement projects here on the blog since i’m loving how each one I take on turns out 🙂
Check out my last project here!