This was one of those projects that seem to take forever. To me it was the old desk that went on and on. Was it worth all of the work? In the end, yes because I was able to repair the water damage and it has more good years left.
I spied the desk in a little out of the way thrift store while visiting my friend’s booth. I didn’t buy it but it was one of those pieces that I couldn’t get out of my mind. The next day I called and struck a deal.
The next problem was how to get it home since I have a little car. My friend, Michael came to the rescue and we picked up this old desk that went on and on.
As I got to work on it, the damage on the bottom was a little more than I thought. I had sanded the top and drawer fronts to the bare wood with the intent to stain it and use my DIY chalk paint on the body of the desk.
I sanded the damaged areas as much as I could and contemplated my next step.
I knew Home Depot and Lowes sell sheets of veneer so I really considered that option although I really didn’t want to.
I took a break and it was meant to be. Karin Chudrey of Art is Beauty just published a post on a piece she was worked on that had damaged veneer. I immediately clicked on the post, and my problem was solved. I clicked on her link and bought the iron on veneer.
I was so excited when I got the iron on veneer delivered. Time to get back to work on this beast. I followed the directions and the repairs were made. I also filled in a little with wood filler and sanded it all smooth.
I was able to paint the desk body using my DIY chalk paint recipe using a medium gray for the base coat, 2 coats and then a darker charcoal gray for the final coat.
I sanded between coats using 220 grit sandpaper by wrapping it around my sanding sponge. Mainly because the sponge is old and I don’t see the need to buy a new one when it works this way. Then I waxed the desk body with clear wax and a final coat of dark wax and buffed to a nice sheen.
The next step was easy because I choose to stain the top. I used the cherry color stain as the desk is traditional looking and I was playing with that because I had a few plans to perk up the traditional look. Once the stain was dry I applied 3 coats of polycrylic for durability.
I moved on to the drawers and pulled out the wrapping paper that I bought so long ago and was my color inspiration for this project. I was going to decoupage it to the sides.
I tried one side and definitely didn’t like it. Plan B, paint the sides using the DIY chalk paint in the lighter gray. The drawers looked blah so I got out a stencil and used the silver wax. The stencil mimicked the design on the wrapping paper which was good. I wasn’t giving up on that.
I then lightly sanded the sides and waxed with a coat of clear wax and then dark.
The wrapping paper was nagging at me. I decided to use it on the bottom of the drawers. I cut out the paper making it slightly larger than the drawer bottom. I used Mod Podge on the bottom and placed the paper in the drawer. I used an old credit card and the roller to smooth it out.
Then I had to stain the drawer fronts. See what I mean about the old desk that went on and on? I used a sharp razor blade to trim the excess paper from the inside of the drawers and then stained the drawer fronts. Finally time to apply Poly on the bottom of the drawers and then the fronts.
And let’s not forget the drawer pulls. I decided to use the original pulls that came on the desk. I thought they were brass. Wrong, I used a magnet and discovered they are metal. I ended up spray painting the drawer pulls in a satin nickel.Finally I was done. With the old desk that went on and on. The chair is for another day.
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Materials and Supplies Used
Plaster of Paris Paint
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