my crafty friends: nightstand makeover

A few weeks ago, I accompanied my friend Diane while she searched for nightstands. She and her husband recently had redone their bedroom, and they only thing that she couldn’t find were nightstands. The ones that she had her eye on were super expensive, and didn’t want to spend that much if she didn’t have to. We stopped by The Salvation Army to see if they had anything that would work. A man went in the back and rolled out these bad boys:

Pretty, they were not. But they did have great lines and were solid wood, and for $10 each, she was sold. She figured that if she messed them up, there wasn’t much of an investment. We stopped by the hardware store, and talked to the paint people. There was a pretty shiny coating on the stands, in addition to some pretty deep scratches. It looks like they belonged to a child at some point, who liked to carve into the wood with a pen. We picked up some wood filler, medium and fine grit sandpaper, a primer, some glossy paint, and a nylon brush. We also were able to find some replacement knobs because the original knobs were way too small, and the wrong color. It’s amazing how a small thing like drawer pulls can make a huge difference. She found some that were in brushed nickel which would match the upholstery tacks on their bed.


TIP: if you have questions about a project and are heading to the hardware store, bring the item or part of the item with you. We dragged in the drawer, which had the coating that we were looking to get rid of, and we able to try out the drawer knobs while we were there.  It is a lot easier than trying to explain.

At this point, I had to head home, but Diane was inspired and immediately got to work at filling in the scratches and sanding the nightstands. She used a medium grit sandpaper block. She also filled in the cracks with woodfiller, and let them dry. She then sanded any excess so the surface was smooth. Sanding was an important step because she was planning on using a high gloss paint so any little imperfection would be highlighted, so she took her time making sure that it was done correctly . After sanding with the medium grit paper, she went over it with a fine grit paper just to make sure it was smooth. Just sanding them made a huge difference. The one on the left has been sanded, while the one on the right hasn’t:

Then she dusted it and used a wet rag to get up any leftover particles. After letting it dry completely (overnight), she applied one coat of primer. This is what it looked like after they were primed:

Looking back, Diane mentioned that she wished that she had taken the time to sand in between the primer and the first coat of paint. If you do plan on doing this, use a fine grit sand paper. She didn’t, and said that they came out great anyways. She said that the high quality nylon brush applied everything very smoothly. She had originally bought a foam roller, which was recommended by someone at the hardware store, but she found that it left tiny bubbles.

Make sure you check back tomorrow to see the final product!


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