Spray Painting a Cheap Brown Hutch into a Cream Colored Hutch for the Dining Room - Thrift Shop Find

I'm not someone who enjoys shopping.  I just have other things I'd rather be doing.  So when one of my daughters wanted me to go to a large thrift store with her a few months ago, I went; but I didn't have anything in mind that I was actually going to look for.  Books maybe... but that's it.

Then I spied this hutch on the floor and for some reason, I liked it.

Which is totally out of character for me.  Because I don't usually care about furniture pieces, I don't like extra 'things' in my house taking up space, I didn't have a place in mind for it and I do not like refinishing furniture.  I hate refinishing furniture actually.

But when I tried to walk away, I stopped and looked back at it again.

And again.  And finally, I walked over and looked at the price tag.  $14.99.

Hmm.  Fifteen bucks.  So if I got it, and hated it, or messed it up somehow, it's not like I would be out a lot of money.

So I bought it.  I decided I wanted it to be an off-white color - vintage, creamy white - not perfect - but something with character.

And I was going to spray paint it... because there was no way I wanted to sand and refinish every single inch of this thing!  Too many curves and small areas.  

Although I started to sand the top (because it's large and flat - so that means fairly easy) - again, I was NOT going to sand everything.  So instead I used  Zinser 1-2-3 water based primer which I had read would cover almost any piece and ready it for painting over without sanding.

I took off the hardware and laid it aside.
I removed the doors on either side but unfortunately you can't remove the center - nor the center GLASS.  So that would be an issue to tackle later (as the front of the middle shelf shows through the glass and there is no way to reach it easily.)

FIRST I spray painted the hardware with a dark brown spray paint.
SECOND, I used the Zinser primer to cover all the spaces on the main piece and the doors.
Letting everything dry for a few days I then decided on the color spray paint I wanted.
I chose "satin ivory" by Krylon - even though I love Rustoleum brand, the color I wanted was only in Krylon.
And I loved it. I knew I would as the post before this one featured the tall vase I painted with it first to be sure I liked the color!

And then I applied the finish.  The top coat.... (sigh).

I had researched online and read that using Minwax polycrylic water based finish would be safe to use on white without it turning it yellow.

I chose the  Minwax polycrylic water based in clear matte and...  yes, it did turn it a creamy yellow.

Not a 'yellow yellow' but enough that I could tell when I walked into the garage area the next day that it was more creamy yellow than white and not the color it was before the top coat was applied.

However, what I decided I could live with, was I carried the piece outside, I spray painted a light coat on top - figuring it still had the protective coat, but wanting to brighten it back up again to off-white and not a creamy yellow.

It worked well enough for me to live with it.

The piece is almost done - the last part I'm doing is that pesky shelf I mentioned at the beginning of this post.

It is right behind a piece of glass that cannot be removed from the piece and the shelves are permanent as well - so I'm slowly painting that but having to let it dry between attempts.

I'm actually spraying paint inside the cap and then 'painting' with a q-tip bent an angle to get between the glass and shelf.  That is why it's taking a bit of time, but it's working and coming along.

The round rivets in the before photos - are not metal.  They are wood and are attached to the piece.  I decided to finish them by painting them by hand so they looked like they were metal.  I just used some random craft paints I had on hand; mixing a metallic silver with some metallic gold and a little black.

I put the original hardware back on the hutch after spray painting it brown.

Overall I'm happy with it; especially because it was a budget friendly $14.99!  

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Painting my red, green black and gold tall floor vase: vintage ivory antiqued

About sixteen years ago we bought some dark green furniture and found a gorgeous rug to match with dark green, dark red, gold and black.  I also found a tall floor vase that matched the rug exactly - even though they came from different stores.

Over the years the rug went somewhere. (Donated?  Garage sale?) and the decor changed but we still loved the furniture, it was in great shape and not showing wear and still a classic style that is still sold in various fabrics and colors.  The 'green' still works but the dark red, black and gold?  Not so much.  And as we prepare to give our green furniture to a graduating college daughter, I'm slowly changing our decor over to ivory, linen, mushroom and grays.  And since I still love this vase - just not the dated colors - I decided I wouldn't be out anything except a $4 can of spray paint by trying to refinish it.

This morning I was running errands to Walmart anyway, so I picked up a can of satin ivory spray paint.  (I knew I didn't want bright white, but I didn't want beige or cream either.  This ivory was the exact shade I was hoping to find.)

I was going to sand the edges and raised design to give it a vintage look so spray paint was all I needed to invest in as I had sandpaper at home. 

I took the vase outside and painted it and because it was spray paint, it was completely dry in about 35 minutes.  Probably less, but I let it sit on the deck for about a half hour and then brought it in as it was dry.  I started to sand the edges and quickly realized I could achieve the same 'look' by dry brushing some dark gray paint on it instead of the time consuming job of sanding (and going through sand paper as the ivory paint clogs it.)

A small bottle of pewter gray craft paint ($.50 at Walmart) and a little sponge - I simple dabbed and rubbed.  When it looked a little heavy to my eyes, I just used a towel to wipe some off.

In the end it was exactly the look I was hoping to achieve.

As I slowly start to transition this room over to a more neutral color, this vase can now serve another 10 years!  I just need to get new tall grasses and branches to put in it as the current 'greens' are too dark for the new, lighter look.

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In the past year or so I've found a handful of friends and family members that actually do use... even though it's not a topic that regularly comes up so I think perhaps there are even more people I know who use it - and I just don't know it!


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How to make a (no sew) fabric covered recipe album or photo album - LOTS of photos

I can always tell when Autumn is 'right around the corner' because I get antsy to do crafts of some sort.  This morning I was 'antsy' again and thinking of what was something creative I could do.  The problem is that I hate knick-knacks, hate clutter, hate waste and useless things.  I'm practical to a fault so I need outlets for creativity that actually fill a need, accomplish something or I can use in some way and not just something that gathers dust.

One of the creative projects I do every so often is make a new recipe book.  Although I like to find recipes online, I find a read and comprehend things much better when they are physically in my hand.  I also hate the loss of information or the inability to access information if files are lost, computers break down, the power is out or any other thousands of reasons I like to have a print copy backup. 

This is one project I do often and last posted almost a year ago, so I thought 'what the heck' I'll post it again.  Lots of little short cuts and personalization you can do here as well as using some other products you might like better.  But the general idea is pretty easy, pretty affordable and turns out pretty nice!  With 3 'pretties' you can't go wrong.

How to make a (no sew) fabric covered recipe album or photo album - LOTS of photos

I didn't think I was going to blog this little project but as I got ready to start it I suddenly thought I should - just in case it helps someone else brainstorm a quick, easy and frugal 'gift' either for someone else or themselves.  I've been making these for years (seriously, I think I made my first around 16 years ago when I needed some affordable Christmas gifts for extended family members).  This makes a nice gift - especially if you include some much-loved recipes to pass along as well.  But to that end, you don't have to use it for recipes.  It's actually a photo album that holds regular 4X6" pictures so you can use it for that purpose as well!

All you need is:

1 (cheap) photo album that holds 4X6" photos
1 fat quarter cut of fabric of your choice
Adhesive spray (if you don't have this and can't buy it, just use white glue watered down, and a paint brush)
Optional:  piece of heavy, pretty paper or cardboard to line if you choose

The cost of photo albums has gone through the roof in the past 10 years so I like to pick up these at Walmart or even Dollar General if you can find them there.  The fabric is also available at Walmart - usually even if they don't have a fabric department, they sell these little squares of 'fat quarters' in the craft department (Fat quarters are approximately 18" x 22" or 46cm x 56cm).  This  is the perfect size for most photo albums of this style and you won't have to cut the pieces.  If you use your own random fabric or other style photo album, just lay your open photo album on the fabric and cut around it leaving about 3-4" fabric on the top and at least 8" on each side for folding over.

A photo album, fat quarter of fabric, scissors and some spray adhesive.

This isn't an 'exact' craft - which is why it goes so quickly.  You just want the fabric to be larger than your album so you have enough fabric around it to fold over the books cover.

Spray adhesive on the outside of the album - and I also like to spray more on the wrong side of the fabric - very lightly in the center, where the album will lay.  This is very sticky so it would be prudent to cover the area you are working in with cardboard to block excess spray, paper or an open flat box, an old sheet, etc. (something) so you don't get sticky spray anywhere you don't want it.

Carefully lay your album down and pull the fabric over the front, smoothing it as you go.  Now 'close' the album and carefully smooth the fabric over the back, getting out any folds or creases.  The spray allows you to pull off and re-position the fabric if you need to for a minute or so after applying it, before it dries.  Make sure you 'close' the album to make sure you have allowed enough fabric to cover and stretch lightly over the album in closed position.  Now, open it back up and lay it flat in front of you.

You can do the seams of the spine next OR the sides - it doesn't matter in what order you do.

For the seam lines of the spine:  On the top and bottom of the album there are two seams at the spine of the album.  Use scissors to cut two slices on the 'seam' lines up to the album.  You can trim the fabric off a little bit and then use adhesive on the fabric to secure and 'fold' it up right to the plastic 'pockets' inside the album.  This gives a nice finished look to this area of the recipe album.  Repeat on top and bottom of spine.

You can use any brand adhesive although this is the brand I typically have on hand at our house.  Use what you have.  If you don't have any and are on a super frugal budget for this, you can use white glue thinned with a bit of water and brush it on the photo album to secure the fabric.  You'll have to allow time to dry for this since there liquid involved.

For the sides, you are going to treat the album as if it were a gift you were wrapping.  Spray the adhesive on the fabric and fold it over the back cover; folding to the inside as if you were covering a school book or wrapping a present.

I like to fold down the corners as well but you don't have to.

Here you can see I've folded the fabric in on the sides, then folded in the corner and proceeded to fold down the top and fold up the bottom.  Secure with more glue or adhesive.

IF you don't like the look of the fabric folded in, you can take a piece of cardboard or heavy (pretty) stock paper and spray it and pop it right over the inside of the back and front of the album - covering the edges of the fabric and giving it a finished look if that is what you prefer.

You can now include a few hand written recipes on 4X6" standard lined index cards (about a dollar a pack at Walmart!) or just fill the slots with empty index cards for them to be filled in later with favorites of whomever you are giving it to.  I like to include 5-10 recipes to 'get them started' and fill the rest with blank cards they can use themselves.

Simple - quick and pretty
You can tie a ribbon around it for gift giving!!

Related products available through Amazon if you can't find them locally;

RayLineDo® 5X Different Pattern Paisley Style 100% Cotton Poplin Fabric Fat Quarter Bundle 46 x 56cm ( Appox 18" x 22") Patchwork Quilting Fabric
Pioneer Ledger Le Memo Album 4x6 (Colors May Vary) - Two Pack
3M Super 77 Multi-Purpose Adhesive, 4.37-Ounce


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