That’s what my living room looked like this morning. I’ve been hating on our living room furniture for a while now, but we don’t have the money to go out and buy a fancy living room set. So, I’ve long since adopted the British mantra, “Make Do and Mend.” I can make do with our ripped garage sale couch and mend our hand-me-down furniture. No problem. Today, I took on a huge project by gathering all of our mismatched living room furniture and painting it all a pretty matching green. Why green? Well, green is my favorite color, if you can’t tell from my blog. When we moved into our first house, I promised Sam he could have his favorite colors (red and black) in the bedroom if I could have some green in the living room.
As you can see, I upheld my end of the bargain quite nicely. So, this morning I made a 7:30 a.m. trip to Lowe’s and went to work! Here are the culprits:
Exhibit A. This is a record cabinet Sam’s dad made in the seventies. It used to have a record player that’s long gone. It was used and abused and, frankly, sort of sad looking. It sat in Sam’s garage for a long time before it began acting as extra kitchen storage in our old house. Now, it acts as a shelf behind the couch to catch all kinds of knick-knacks we leave lying around. It was in desperate need of a makeover.
Exhibit B. This is a table I bought at a thrift store a few years ago for $8.00. As I began painting it, I realized how much I just didn’t like this table. It’s wobbly, and I’m currently sporting a huge goose egg on my leg from when I ran into it. It just clutters up our house, and after I realized how hard it would be to paint with all those nooks and crannies, I had no problem hauling it to the dumpster. This one didn’t survive the war.
Exhibit C. This is a nice cabinet that was in Sam’s room when he was a teenager. It holds our board games and Sam’s Xbox games. I wasn’t ready to part with it, but it was very scratched and needed some help.
Exhibit D. In my first photo, you can see our TV stand. It’s your very basic stand-on-wheels, nothing fancy. The wood didn’t match anything in our house, and I figure if you’re going to stare at something so much while watching TV, you might as well make it pretty.
So, the battle began. First, I cleaned each piece with a rag and Windex, and then I sanded everything with regular sandpaper.
Next, I applied a coat of primer. I tried the kind in a spray can this time, but I didn’t like it as much as the regular brush-on kind. This coat didn’t have to be perfect; just enough to create a surface for the paint to stick to.
Next came the first coat. Honestly, I was pretty freaked out at this point. The paint was looking much brighter than I anticipated, and it reminded me a lot of astroturf. I wasn’t looking forward to explaining to Sam how I ruined all of our furniture while he was at work.
Although the color was a far cry from the “Shady Knoll” I was promised in the paint’s name, I took a deep breath and plowed on. After three more coats, I had the color I wanted.
I sprayed the tops with a protective top coat because I knew they would be scratched easily. That’s why they look a little shiny in some of these pictures.
And finally… voila! My furniture has found new life, and they are forever grateful.
And they look like they belong together!
The cabinet ended up being my favorite. I love the way the bronze hardware looks against the dark green!
Yay! Brand new pretty living room! :)
Here’s a before/after shot, just for fun:
This project took a full day’s work, but it was so worth it! I hope you enjoyed the transformation as much as I do!