Little Vintage Refurbs And Upcycles

I’ve currently been working on a few smaller scale refurb projects. These include yet another vintage spice rack complete with lidded jars and a vintage wooden letter rack which I’ll show you in a later post.

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Well, as for the spice rack which was a plain wall mountable small shelf in a rose wood colour, I simply reprinted the shelf using farrow and ball in the colour Pale Hound. First my shelf was sanded and primed before giving it a total of two coats of the paint. I then applied some clear Annie Sloan wax before giving the entire piece a light quick sanding only applying light pressure with a piece of 100 grit sandpaper. I then applied a second coat of wax that I buffed and left to dry.

The jars were cleaned and the original labels left on. I removed the lids that were made of the same wood and these were painted with Annie Sloan chalk paint in the colour Paris Grey. Two coats were applied before being waxed and sanded in the same way as the shelf they would stand on.

I then used my Annie Sloan paint to paint a small moulding which I brought in the design and shape of a rose from an online source. Once dry I used some extra strong wood glue to apply the painted moulding to the centre of the shelf, before finally adding my jar lids and standing them on their newly painted shelf.

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Simple… Its complete and now ready to be mounted on someone’s kitchen wall, where just a few hours ago this was just about ready for the bin! The difference a little shabby chic makes is amazing & very easy to create.

This will now be sold and is available now. You can find me at vintage fairs, bootfairs and festivals throughout the summer mainly in London and Kent. But if I’m not at an event near you, those wanting to buy any of the vintage furniture and nicknacks I sell (including vintage jewellery and textiles) can do so by contacting me directly (email address in side bar or contact tab). I often display some of my items here on the blog or via Instagram (Claire Louise Parkinson). I’m in the process of creating a few pages on the blog to display such items and this should be ready shortly so please look out for this.

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Tutorial – IKEA Mirror Upcycle

You too can take one of these Ikea mirrors…

And jazz it up for someone special…

Mine has been personalised for my daughter who absolutely loves it.

To upcycle the Ikea mirror just like mine you’ll need…

Metallic Purple Acrylic Paint (Baker Ross)
Various size brushes
Black permanent marker pen
White/glitter decals
Black/glitter butterfly decals
Mod podge gloss

Tools
Glue & Paint Brushes

The mirror was actually rather glossy in its texture which meant I really should have striped it down to ensure the purple acrylic paint would stick to the frames surface.

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However, I decided to try something different! One… I was being lazy, and two… Because I wanted to experiment a little with painting techniques.

So, I applied my paint directly on top of the mirrors frame. For the first coat a very thin layer was applied with a sponge applicator. For the second layer I applied another thin layer in the opposite direction I painted the last.

For the final layer I swirled the paint with the tip of my sponge to gain the effect shown below.

I then let my frame dry for an hour

For the next part of this upcycle I took a black permanent marker and with it I wrote my daughters name (Alice Sara) at the top and bottom of my frame like so. Alice has a double barrel name but you could maybe use the first name followed by their middle name or surname.

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I then left it for a further hour just to ensure the pen was fully dry to ensure I didn’t smudge it during the next step.

I then decorated my frame with the decals. I applied some decals to my wording as to give a 3D impression.

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My last few steps was to cover the entire frame in mod podge gloss and
fit the mirror back into the frame to finish.

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If you don’t fancy trying this yourself I’m happy to create one for you. All you need to do is email me the name you want to use to personalise the frame and any other requirements… boy, girl, colour, design etc. This maybe created on a different frame dependent on howmany of this type I have left. All will be of similar sizes and of good quality.
Prices start from £10
Email clairelouise.tss@gmail.com
Payment taken via PayPal

Upcycle – Vintage Inspired Crackle Butterfly Box

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I’ve had this plain wooden Ivory box with drawer fitment for a while now and wasn’t to sure what to do with it. I brought it at a rummage sale for pennies and at the time thought it was fine left the way it was.

However, as the weeks have turned to months, this box has done nothing useful. Its sadly just been moved around my bedroom, longing to fit in. With this I decided that in order to make real use of the box i’ll have to put my own personal stamp on it!

Being a girl who just loves jewellery and consequently owns a lot of it, I decided to upcycle my wooden box into a vintage style jewellery box.

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Here’s what I used to transform the ivory wooden box..

FolkArt Acrylic Paint (940 Coffee Bean)
Mod Podge Shimmer- Gold
Wooden Cut Out Butterfly
4mm White Crystals (flat backed)
Crackle Paint White
Square Piece Of Mirror
PVA Glue (mixed with water)

Tools
Paint brushes
Glue Brushes
Sponge Paint Applicator
Hairdryer (or heat tool)

Firstly I had to give my box a wipe to remove any dust or dirt.

Next I removed the drawer and with a sponge applicator I applied my coffee bean paint to the entire box (drawer included). I allowed them both to dry before adding a second coat.

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Once the box and its drawer had dried I added a thin layer of mod podge gold shimmer adding a thicker application to the edges of my box.

I allowed a 30 minute drying time before starting on my next step…

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Now… I mixed 2 parts PVA glue to 1 part water (the idea is to create a runny but tacky glue mixture).

I then applied a thin amount to the lid of my box and applied direct heat with my hairdryer. I made sure not to completely dry the mixture as I needed it to remain slightly tacky to the touch.

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I then took my crackle paint in white and scooped out some mixture onto a plate. With a sponge I applied the paint over the entire lid (directly over the tacky glue mixture) making sure not to go over the same area more than once as this will ease the crackling effect.

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I then did the same with both the glue mixture and the crackle paint on all other areas of my box excluding the front section that surrounds my drawer. The drawer itself also received the same treatment.

Once all areas of crackle were applied and fully dry I again applied my gold mod podge shimmer to the entire box, including the section that remained brown and not crackled.

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As I allowed the box to air dry for a further 30 minutes or so, I started work on my butterfly.

To decorate my wooden butterfly for the lid of my box I used a sponge applicator to cover it in coffee bean paint on both sides. This received two coats of paint in total.

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Once dry I applied mod podge gold shimmer to the entire butterfly again on both sides.

Once the butterfly was dried I applied another coat of gold shimmer to just one side of the butterfly. It was during this application that I also applied the 4mm white crystals and then placed to one-side till later.

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Next I took a piece of square mirror big enough to fit neatly in the centre of the inner section of my lid, and stuck it down with super glue.

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The last step was to take my crystal butterfly and again using superglue apply it to the lid of my box at a slight angle like so…

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Done!

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I love the crackle effect on the box. By adding the gold mod podge shimmer the box has both subtle and vibrant gold tones. However, my favourite part has to be the crystal butterfly. Its hard to capture both the sparkle from the crystals and the shimmer from the gold on a photo! The effect looks much more spectacular in life.

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I’ve really enjoyed turning my plain old ivory box into my own little vintage masterpiece. Why not upcycle things around your home? I’d love some inspirational ideas for the future, so feel free to share any in the comment section of this post.

Upcycle – Transform Chocolate Trays into Nail Polish Storage

Would you have ever of thought it, that a chocolate tray from a dairy milk tray box could come in this useful?

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How about this for a little upcycle project… Use the chocolate trays from a chocolate box to make perfect sized drawer inserts to store all your nail polish in. The variety of shapes cut out for the chocolates are great to fit your different polish bottles and will stop them rolling around in your dresser.

Here’s what you will need to make one for yourselves.

Tray From A Chocolate Box (mine is from a milk tray box)

Acrylic Paint. (I used a chocolate brown colour, how appropriate)

Mod Podge Gold Shimmer

Tools…

2 Glue Brushes
2 Sponge Applicators (Small)
Plenty of Nail Polish in Need Of Storage.

This idea is very simple to pull together. Here’s what you do.

Give your chocolate tray a good wash in warm soapy water to remove any yummy chocolate flakes. Be careful not to spilt the plastic. Dry fully.

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Next, take your chosen paint and one of your sponges and apply the paint to your tray. Use a paint brush for the hard to reach areas.

Give your tray a total of two coats of paint with a 20 minute drying time In between.

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Once your tray is dry use your second sponge to add a coat of Mod Podge Gold Shimmer. Use a brush in the hard to reach areas.

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Add thicker coats of shimmer to certain areas to give the tray both vibrant and subtle tones of gold.

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Once dry you can try it out for size, placing nail polish bottles in all the different compartments.

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Its a great little upcycle that not only cuts down on waste but also provides a pretty convenient storage solution that’s so easy to create, a toddler could do it.

Thanks for reading and have fun.

Vintage Bedroom Furniture Refurbishment Using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint

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As some of you may have guessed I’m really into everything vintage and shabby chic so decided to refurbish some old furniture pieces to create a shabby chic inspired bedroom set.

I brought the pieces of furniture I wanted to use from a British Heart foundation store that only specialise in furniture and electrical goods.

I brought a dresser that looks 50’s to me. It was dark wood with lots of drawers and a huge mirror! The dresser was priced at just £25

I also brought a chest of drawers that somebody had painted white. These again are rather spacious with 3 really large drawers. The chest of drawers was also a steal at £25

I also brought for the bedroom some white bedside drawers. These had some pretty mouldings on the front but one or two were missing. It also had some pretty porcelain handles. The bedside drawers were an amazing bargain at just £5.

The last item I brought was a vintage French Mahogany Side/Lamp table that used to form part of a nest of tables. This again cost me just £5.

Feeling inspired by the mouldings on the bedside drawers I went on a hunt for some French inspired mouldings on the net. I found some lovely ones being sold by Chic mouldings via eBay. With this I purchased 4 floral corners for £3.49, 3 Rose and Ornate Scrolls for £6.99 and finally 2 large Rose and Ornate Scrolls for £12.99.

My next decision was what paint to use. Having done a lot of research on the net I finally decided on Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in the colour Paris Grey. Luckily for me there is a store close by who sells the paint as these are only sold in selected stores. I also purchased Annie Sloan Clear Wax.

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I’ve heard many people state how expensive Annie Sloan paint is, and at £17 per litre at first I would have agreed. However I’ve used just over half a litre tin on all four of my items. All but the lamp table received 2 coats of paint. The wax was priced at around £7.99 and again I’ve used about half a tin. I really can’t believe how far this paint goes!

The best thing about Annie Sloan paint, that I’m sure anyone would tell you, is there is no prep work, the paint sticks to any surface even those that are highly varnished.

The one thing I needed to do was brush and wash down all my furniture to remove dust and marks.

As this was my first time working with this paint I first tried it out on the smallest item… The side/lamp table. I used a big brush from the Harris range at homebase and a smaller brush that I use when using acrylic for the hard to reach areas, then I got going. Chalk paint is really thick and you can add a little water. I didn’t really need to this for the side table but the longer I had the paint the thicker it became so on some of the other items I just added a little water to my brush.

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The paint went on really easily and gave good coverage. If your using this paint for the first time you will discover just how amazingly fast this stuff dries. This is why its important to ensure you haven’t got any drip marks, keep checking as you paint each section. I loved how the table looked with just the one coat of chalk paint and wanted a lot of dark wood to show through once distressed.

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A lot of people wax there wood, distress then wax again. I only needed to use this technique for the small bedside drawers as I found these harder to work with. The paint came of more easily so I decided to wax before distressing then wax again. Nonetheless I didn’t need to do this for the table, dresser or chest of drawers. So once my table was dry I used some 100 grit sandpaper to distress. I paid particular attention to the corners of the table, the feet and sides.

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Once distressed to my satisfaction I used an antique soft dresser brush (that I found in a charity shop) to remove any dust. I then used a cloth to apply my wax working section by section. I applied the wax with the cloth and then used an old washed body power puff to buff where I had waxed.

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Its easy to tell when your wax is fully dried as it looks patchy as certain areas dry ahead of others. The darker areas are those that are still wet.

Before painting my bedside drawers I used the side of a wallpaper scrapper to remove the mouldings. I then took four of the removed mouldings and with some mod podge I stuck 2 to the top corners of the first drawer and 2 to the bottom corners of the second drawer. These were dry and strong within about 30 minutes.

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As mentioned my bedside drawers were much harder to paint simply because the wood wasn’t of such good quality. Despite the fact I liked the handles I removed them and replaced with some lovely floral handles I brought from eBay. The bedside drawers were painted with two coats of paint and I added a little water to my brush as the paint had become quite thick. The bedside drawers got waxed both before and after distressing.

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As for the dresser I removed the mirror and then using mod podge to stuck the 4 floral corners onto the dresser and then I took my large rose and ornate scrolls sticking one each in the centre of both my large drawers. I applied two coats of paint to my dresser letting them dry for around 40 minutes in between coats. I didn’t remove the hardware as despite ordering some 8 beautiful crystal handles from eBay I was still unfortunately waiting on them arriving. Instead I just painted over the handles it already had attached.

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I had a lot of fun distressing this piece and was really pleased with the final result. I found this one took quite a bit of waxing but it was worth it.

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As for my drawers I added my 3 small rose and ornate scrolls to the centre of each draw but decided to paint them first. I worked in the same way as I did my dresser only I was more gentle when sanding as I discovered the previous owners had painted these lilic before they painted them white and wanted to ensure it was only the white that was visible when distressed.

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I painted over the metal Crome handles, distressing lightly as to allow some of the Crome to show through.

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I had so much fun working on this project. I absolutely love the results and now want to paint all that I own and more. I’ve brought a stunning mahogany magazine rack that I want to refurbish. I’m also planning on using some dark wax for this one… I’m getting brave!

Upcycle – Shabby Chic Spice Rack & Jars

Now we all know how much I love to find treasure at jumble sales, bootfairs and charity shops. Its become a great little hobby of mine, I must admit.

A few weeks back I discovered a wooden spice rack with 12 cute glass jars, all with horrible wooden lids. Now, this definitely wasn’t the prettiest of spice racks, but somehow I had my shabby specs on & could see past its less than attractive appearance! In fact, this shabby dark rack and its jars were now a vision of beauty within my mine and for just pennies (50 of them to be precise) I just couldn’t walk away without it.

So, the spice rack became another of my vintage finds, one needing a bit of tender loving care! So a plan unravelled in my head. One involving antique creams and bright reds, gingham & spotted hearts. I was gonna transform this spice rack into something gorgeous.

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Here’s what I used…

Antique white acrylic paint
White acrylic paint
Red Santa acrylic paint
6 red gingham wooden hearts (self adhesive)
6 red spotted wooden hearts (self adhesive)
Mod Podge (Gloss)

Tools…
Large & Small paint brushes
Sand Paper (100 grit)
Sponge (make up sponge for mod podge)

Sadly I forgot to take a picture of the old spice rack all set up and looking horrid. However from the step by step images that include all the parts (yes, rack, jars and lids) you can clearly see why it needed an upcycle.

first step was to prepare the rack and wooden lids for painting. I did this by first washing my wood with warm soapy water. I dried them fully and then gave them all a good rub over with the sand paper. The last step was to remove all traces of any sand paper dust with a small brush before finally giving it another wipe over with a damp cloth.

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Once my rack & all 12 wooden lids were all clean and dry I was technically ready to apply a prima to my rack, however, I felt that it wasn’t really needed so instead I skipped this step and went right on to applying my first coat of antique white paint.

I used the biggest brush to paint on the paint but used the smaller brush to paint the racks corners and edges.

If you want to do this then Its important to remember to paint just one thin layer of paint, leave to dry and then paint on another layer this way you won’t end up with drip and brush marks.

I ended up giving my rack 4 coats of the antique white paint and did start to wonder why I ever thought I could skip painting them white beforehand so didn’t make the same mistake with my lids.

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With this I painted my 12 jar lids in 2 coats of white paint as a base coat and left to dry.

Once my white paint was dry I then went on to give my 12 jar lids 2 coats of ‘Santa Red’ letting them dry for around 20 minutes between coats.

Once dry all lids got a coating of mod podge that I applied with my thick makeup sponge.

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The next step was to add some character to my rack and shabby it up a little. With the 100 grit sand paper I rubbed it along the edges of my stand, removing some of the paint to reveal the dark wood underneath. This gave the impression of age, making the rack look as though it had encountered natural ware over the years.

Next I made sure all dust was removed from my rack with a brush and a damp cloth. With my sponge I then gave my rack a layer of good old mod podge.
Mod podge is great and will give my rack a nice coat of protection.

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Making sure all jars were nice and clean I then applied the 6 self adhesive gingham hearts and 6 spotted hearts to the middle of my 12 jars. I gave these a layer of mod podge for protection.

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Finally I lined all 12 jars onto my rack, gingham, spots, gingham… and so forth and then stood back to admire.

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At this point you can add pretty ribbon or thread 12 miniature tags through some twine, adding the names of you’re spices to the tags before looping them over the jars. This is optional! I didn’t feel the need to do this as I’m pretty good at knowing whats what… Plus if I’m ever in doubt a quick sniff always sorts it out.

So… There it is… My antique white spice rack with a splash of Santa red. I’m really pleased with the results and the difference is actually really big considering I’ve only used a few items to help form this transformation.

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Talking of transformations, I’m currently refurbishing a number of furniture items I’ve brought for my bedroom. I’m using Annie Sloan chalk paint and clear wax and hope to share my progress of the next few days.

As for my shabby upcycle, I would love to hear your thoughts?

Shabby Chic Inspired Mod Podge & Decopatch Tea Light Jars

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I love using Decopatch papers to decorate items and surfaces. I had some pretty pink rose Decopatch paper left from another project and decided to use it to make some pretty tea light jars to match my heart twinklets I made a while back.

The results were fabulous and I was left with a really pretty tea light jar that I now plan to make more of.

Regardless of the beautiful result, these tea light jars are relatively simple to make and don’t require very many materials to create.

Here’s what you will require to make one of these tea light jars…

Small jar (Ikea spice jars are ideal)
Decopatch pink rose paper
Mod Podge
Hot pink fine glitter

Tools…

Scissors
Hog brush for Mod Podge

How to make your own pretty candle jar…

1) Cut your rose paper into medium size pieces.

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2) Apply Mod Podge directly onto the glass jar in the area you want to apply your first piece of Decopatch paper.

3) Once you have stuck down the paper, add a thin layer of Mod Podge over the top.

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4) Continue doing the above steps in till your jar is completely covered.
Be sure to slightly over lap the papers. Cut smaller pieces of paper for any patch ups. With this piece, try to ensure your papers at least match somewhat and the pattern doesn’t look too odd.

5) leave to dry for around 30 minutes

6) Once dry add a layer of Mod Podge around the jars neck and its bottom before sprinkling the fine pink glitter over the glued areas. Shake off any excess glitter.

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7) Now add a small amount of Mod Podge to the middle of your jar and then cover with a little glitter (few pinches). Now leave the jar to dry for another 30 minutes.

8) Once dry finally add a final thin layer of Mod Podge over your entire jar and leave to dry for an hour or more.

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9) Now, its dried, all that’s left to do is pop in a tea light and light it up with a candle lighter.

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As the flame take form you will notice how your candle jar begins to spakle with the light and glitter.The effect is simply stunning and I’m really pleased with mine.

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So… There you have it! Really cute tea light jars that are easy to make and don’t cost a fortune either. Why not make them for a loved one this Valentines Day?