Friday, January 2, 2015

Transforming a step ladder - complete!

A few weeks ago I showed you my step ladder transformation project. I was a bit stuck on what to use as a bedside table in my teeny tiny guest room, until Pinterest inspired me and a little step ladder destined for landfill came my way - for free!

The stool was a little worse for wear and as the bed in that room is a timber finish, I wanted this little guy to be painted.

I would definitely encourage anyone to try a little project like this, it's so much fun, fairly quick and very rewarding! 

First step was to take the stool apart and give everything a sand. Sanding down creates a rougher surface for the paint to adhere to, and if the timber has been varnished you want to get most of that off. It also gives you a good up close and personal look at what you're working with, and if you are a perfectionist (not me) you can patch up holes with putty.

A good orbital sander definitely helps out with a job like this, but there's still plenty of nooks to get in by hand. The grit of sandpaper you use depends on how hard you want to sand the item back. I don't mind things with dents and holes so I just went over with a finer paper.

Next step is undercoat! If you were after a perfect job (see above, not me), you would need to use a stain blocking undercoat first. This will stop the varnish and colour of the timber coming through the paint at a later date. But word of warning! Your perfection comes at a price and that price is, stain blocker is a hard thing to use! I've tried a couple of different brands, and to apply with brush or roller it's stinky (being oil based), dries so quick you don't have time to smooth your brush strokes and is very annoying to clean off your brushes! This stuff comes in a spray in some brands and I would definitely say its worth a go to save the drama.

So this time I used a normal undercoat (one coat). I've found the trick with undercoat is to get your brush strokes all nice and pretty. It saves on sanding later on and makes for a nicer job, and I think its more important than a perfectly even coverage. But that's just me!

I also decided to paint the hinges and bars from the stool in black, as they had marks a sand wouldn't remove. Sometimes however its nice to leave the trimmings the way they are to leave some age on your piece of furniture. After all, you don't want to take away all it's story!

And here it is, complete and in place!

It's a perfect fit, and the pale grey fits in perfectly. 

I have no idea how other people do such a good job of hiding cords in their photos. Photoshop? Cable ties? Fake lamps?

I'm so happy with my little step ladder come bedside table!

Have you ever rescued a piece of furniture? Tell me about it!

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I'm a young earth loving Tasmanian who loves nature, art, old things, handmade things, collecting things and embracing the lovelier things the world has to offer.