Painting It Up: Part Two

We finally got a few non-rainy days, and I took advantage of them to finish my spray-painting projects. If you missed "Part One" of these projects, check it out here to see what the before's of these three pieces.

First up, the old mail room organizer we rescued from a dumpster across the way:

A caption on that piece of art says "Man, that fish can dance"

Done! I love the crisp white exterior in contrast with the raw wood interior complete with some old name labels. It's actually now placed in a different spot in our entry hallway, but the area in this picture gets better light, so we put it there for the photos. For now it's holding some Pyrex and other inventory, and that's working out quite fine, as we always need more room to hold stock.

Here's how the project went down:
After Chris cleaned out all the mail slots (this had been in someone's basement and was rather yucky), I spent forever taping off the interior with painters tape and newspaper. It was surprisingly difficult since the slots were in the way of easy taping, and the tape didn't stick to the sides of the slots very well. Once that was all set, I sanded down all the rough spots on the exterior and got it all ready to spray:

See how icky the side was? And that was the good side, too.

After all that hard work, the spraying was actually the fast and easy part:

At least it validated all the time I spent taping it off once I saw the crisp white line around the inside after pulling off the newspaper. So glad we saw the potential in this diamond in the rough when we spotted it by the dumpster! It's a really unique piece that works well with all our other mid century furniture; we've discovered that it's always a good idea to mix it up a bit so your space doesn't start looking like a time capsule.

These last two pieces were almost done last time, but now they're really looking good and ready for action:

The newly white IKEA bookshelf is like a whole new piece of furniture! After one more can of white spray paint and a clear coat to seal it all in, we put the hardware back on and slid it into a corner of the office. You can't tell, but the inside of the cabinet is still the original wood color and the contrast looks great when you open it up. We have just begun loading it up with books and inventory, but there is plenty more to go.

Put a bird on it.

Last up is my little blue candle holder. It was originally a dark metal and just not very exciting, but I picked it up from Savers anyway since I thought it had potential. I found a great bright aqua spray paint, but it only came in a satin finish and I really wanted this piece to shine! So I picked up some clear glossy enamel spray and gave it a nice shiny coat of that, which was definitely worth it. We didn't have any candles to put in it, but it looks even cooler with air plants, if I do say so myself. I think we're going to list this guy in our Etsy shop and see how it goes. If it gets lots of favorites and sells quickly, maybe I'll look into doing more projects like this one!

What do you think of the final products? Worth the hours of taping and spraying, and several runs to the hardware store to buy more paint? Have you taken advantage of the summer weather to do some painting projects? Found any cool stuff in the garbage or on the side of the road? Free stuff is the best!

Linking up to these lovely blogs, check them out!
Someday Crafts
Handy Man Crafty Woman
Seven Thirty Three
Rae Gun Ramblings
Momnivore's Dilemma
The Shabby Creek Cottage
Thrifty 101


  1. Um dumb question maybe but why don't you just paint it with a roller?

    1. Totally a fair question! Several reasons:
      1. I hate setting up and cleaning up (especially cleaning up!) all the materials it takes to use rollers or brushes (plus I don't have a lot of them so would I have to improvise or buy them).
      2. It takes the same amount of time/stuff to prep the furniture either way, so the difference is in the painting experience, and...
      3. It takes way longer for paint with rollers/brushes to dry, so with multiple coats the project takes way longer. Spray paint dries in just a few minutes! It's also a lot faster to spray interior corners and other hard to reach areas than it is to brush them.
      4. I don't have tons of experience comparing the two, but I have read in many places online that you just get a more professional looking finish with spray paint, and so far that seems to hold true for me. With spray paint you get a super smooth and even surface that looks awesome.
      Hope that clears it up!

    2. Ah, good to know. A good tip for laziness with rollers and brushes at the end of the day of panting: wrap in a plastic bag and pop it in the fridge. No cleaning required, ready to use the next day. When project is done just throw the roller away.

  2. All great makeovers but that mail slot is AMAZING!! So perfect for display.

  3. i love the new white pieces, but what a unique idea to turn that candle holder into a planter!

  4. I love how each space came out, your new home is already looking amazing! I love painting dumpster finds and moving them into the home. I actually refuse to buy more furniture, there's too much out there for free for me to waste me money on new stuff...

    (PS: I never use rollers either, I'm too lazy/sloppy of a crafter for my own finds to bother with the extensive roller cleaning process. It's Torture!)

  5. I love the idea of putting air plants in candle holders! Genius!
    I'd love to have you come link this up on my blog hop: http://www.hideousdreadfulstinky.com/2012/08/eat-make-grow-thursday-blog-hop-1.html

  6. Everything looks great!!! I can't believe that's an IKEA bookcase.


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