One of the outcomes of my interest in Pinterest is this: I see gorgeous furniture DIYs and I want to try but I get scared that I will never finish or when I do finish it will be ugly and I won’t want it anyway which sort of defeats the purpose.
I finally found a hutch that needed love but wasn’t exactly my dream style. I thought it was an optimal project because if it turned out badly, I wouldn’t have messed up my dream hutch. I would use it primarily to store my supplies and works-in-progress rather than having them spread over much of my house!
All the paint and the vintage maps were upcycled. Here in Kern County you can get free paint to save paint from going into dumps. Usually the colors are not exactly the best colors, but I usually use them for a first coat, rather than expensive primer, or I use them as a base to mix other colors with. Some of the paint – like the green – was from Lowe’s “oops!” paint section, where you may buy paint someone mixed but didn’t want for a very discounted price.
Here is the hutch in its formerly dark brown wood panel look with a bit of “Oildale Exterior” colored free paint on her.
I thought… oh, no. Really? The oildale exterior really did nothing for her at all. I worried I had made a horrible mistake on her and walked away for a few days. This philosophy of not needing to rush through the project really helped me work on a relaxed, pressure free way.
I wanted to paint the front with an off-white from the oops pile and the sides and drawers a green also from the woops pile. When I got the gree paint on I felt a little bit better, and when I sanded the green drawers and sides, I felt a burst of energy. I could finally see the hutch being a great expression of me!
I decided to paint a layer of white on the drawers and sand again. They aren’t perfect, but this isn’t a project where I want it to look like someone stamped it out of a factory, so I didn’t mind completely.
I took the ugly old handles off and went to Lowe’s to find a replacement. Since they made nothing in that size, I chose to buy some round wood handles and painted them the same white and the other parts of the hutch. I probably could have ordered some online, but I like the look of these twin handles. To me they represent the before/after of my works in processes that will wind up on my shelves.
Finally, I added the maps. I have quite an assortment of vintage books on hand because most of my art involves book art. I wanted the maps to represent the journey were are all on, and in this case, the journey my art is on. Sometimes I have no idea when I set out with a piece where it will take me. I used mod podge to put them on and then sealed them with triple thick on both the backs of the shelves and the front of the drawers/
I finished up with waxing the piece, something new for me that I read about on furniture DIY tutorials.
I haven’t ever written a tutorial before and DIY is surely not my focus nor is it my forte, I simply wanted to share a bit of my process.
A few tips I did learn along the way I hadn’t read before that might help you:
1. Take your time and be willing to “step away” from the project if you feel aimless or frustrated.
2. Don’t concern yourself with the opinions of others whose style is VERY different than yours.
3. Be open to changes as you go. Oftentimes it isn’t until the “making” we know what components and colors are meant to give life to that particular piece.
And yes, I am looking forward to my next project even now! I’ll be going out of town for the last time this Summer. More thrifting, upcycling and repurposing to come!
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