This was a great Goodwill find! $10 and in decent shape. It was plain wood laminate at time of purchase. The idea was to make it look like an old, beloved book that has been reread throughout one's life.
First Step: Sanding
Second Step: Primer
Third Step: "Whitewash"
I achieved this effect by using white acrylic paint. It's very thick and dries quickly, making the coat very uneven. Perfect for a distressed appearance. I did two coats but you could really get away with one.
Fourth Step: Distressing
This needs to be done before the paint dries. I used a wet washcloth and simply wiped away the paint around some edges and corners. Once the paint had dried I took a razor blade to the top and scraped away some paint to achieve a "chipping" effect.
Fifth Step: Accenting
I used a color called "calypso sky", also acrylic for the drawer pulls and door knobs, as well as the bottom molding.
(I felt that the sides were too bare so I accented them with this color also. See bottom for instructions.)
Inside the doors I used torn pages from an old, yellowing book and decoupaged them with diluted Elmer's.
Continuing with the theme of "old book" I printed out some very large font Times New Roman letters, placed them under clear contact paper, traced, and then cut the contact paper to create stencils. Since the contact paper has an adhesive side it lays perfectly still while you paint within the stencil. I created the blurred, printing press look by wiping the black paint with a wet washcloth and making fingerprint smudges around the letters.
This is a birthday present for my best friend so in order to make it special I summoned all her friends to think of ONE word that describes her best. Using one of the same pages I used for the insides of the doors, I printed those words as though they were a paragraph in a book, with her first name as the chapter heading. I put a very small amount of glue on the back of the page and placed it to the right of the word "loved".
Then I finished the whole piece with satin polyurethane, (although I think matte would have been more in keeping with the old, distressed look).
Finally, since the purpose for this piece is to house her jewelry boxes, I added ten eye hooks to each side for long necklaces. I also put a chain across each door for fishhook earrings.
|Here you can see one hook in the top left side of the piece. I added nine more to this side and ten to the opposite side.|
Side Accents: I removed one of the drawer pulls with a screwdriver. Holding it in place on a piece of clear contact paper, I carefully traced around the edges. I then cut out the shape with an x-acto knife and discarded it. I removed the paper backing of the contact paper, exposing the adhesive, and placed it directly on the side of the cabinet. I used a wet sponge to dab the paint within the stencil and then removed the contact paper carefully.