DIY THURSDAY: OLD COAT RACK = ARCHITECTURAL DECOR

I’m a huge fan of those old, chippy, and occasionally rotten wooden architectural pieces. In fact, I’d like to have far more of them in my home. Unfortunately, it just so happens that they often come with a hefty price tag, or they are so rotten that they simply fall apart in my hand! So until I stumble upon those pieces that speak to me – without instantly crumbling into dust – I have to settle with what I have or simply create something similar…

Aha! Some of you may remember the barn door turned coat rack I put up in place of this piece:

Old Coat rack

Well, today I finally decided to do something with it. A few swipes of paint and a dab of dark wax would transform this piece into the perfect architectural décor for my French door frame. So off to work I went…

Coat Rack Before

First, and quite obviously, I needed to remove the hardware, so I grabbed a Phillips-head screw driver, removed all the screws, pulled off the hooks, and put them to the side for use on another project.

Coat Rack During

I then sanded down the holes a bit and filled each one with wood-filler. After allowing the filler to quickly dry, I lightly sanded again, wiped down the entire piece with a damp cloth, and began painting in…you guessed it, Annie Sloan’s Old White!

Coat Rack During 2

With two light coats of chalk paint, I gave it time to fully dry, and then once again lightly sanded the piece down, distressing at the corners and along the edges.  After wiping it free of dust, I began waxing the entire piece with Annie Sloan’s clear wax. Once the clear wax was buffed, I then began applying dark wax, making sure I really worked it into all of the nicks and grooves:

Coat Rack Waxed

With the dark wax, I tend to work in smaller sections – this piece was small enough for me wax on half the piece with dark wax, and then wax off with clear wax before the dark wax fully dried. I then repeated the process on other half. This process removes the majority of the dark wax, leaving behind a light stain on the majority of the piece, and a darker, almost dirty-like stain in the nicks and grooves. The final product looked like this:

Coat Rack Complete Macro

It took me a while to hang it above the French doors – I really could have used a second pair of hands! But after struggling with it a bit this morning, I finally managed to get it in place, and fairly straight too!

Coat rack Completed Hung

It’s a little more brown than I would typically paint, but I think it mirrors (pun intended) this piece directly across from it quite nicely:

Mirror in Dining Room

What do you think? Do you have miscellaneous items laying around that, with a little TLC, can be transformed into architectural décor? Time to start rummaging around in your garage!

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DIY THURSDAY: MIRROR, MIRROR, ON THE WALL…

Call me vein, but I love mirrors. They can add light and depth to any room; they can be an architectural element, an intricate detail, or a bold surprise. So when I come across large, framed mirrors on my pickin’ trips (for a good price, of course), I immediately snatch them up.

Take this guy, for example…

Gold Mirror

I came across this mirror while at a junk store out in Richmond, VA, and I couldn’t resist the amazing detail – but the color was this gaudy, spray-painted gold that hid those intricate details. So in my typical DIY fashion, I broke out my paint brush, a can of Old White Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, some sandpaper, and Annie Sloan’s clear AND dark wax.

When working with details like this, the dark wax works wonders – truly! It gives the piece that aged, antique look while really making every little detail pop with that perfect patina.

So after painting the piece entirely white (two coats), I hand distressed it with 180-grit sandpaper, waxed the piece first with the clear wax, buffed it, and then added the dark wax (*unless you want to attempt to use the dark wax as a stain, ALWAYS wax the piece with clear or natural wax before using the dark wax). When using dark wax, you really want to get it deep into the grooves and details – don’t be shy!

Gold Mirror Waxed

Typically, it’s best to work in sections, dark wax on, clear wax off, allowing the dark wax to stay in the nicks and grooves, but waxing/buffing the majority off with the clear wax, leaving only a tinted patina behind. See how the details really begin to pop?!

After rubbing in the dark wax, and buffing off with the clear wax, I ended up with this…

Large Mirror Styled

Large Mirror Macro

Not too shabby, eh?

Any mirror can be painted, and with just a little TLC, you can change the whole dynamic of a room. A few more examples:

Tuscan Mirror

BEFORE: I’m just starting to paint the piece in Annie Sloan’s Paris Grey.

Tuscan Mirror After

AFTER: Hand distressed and with a hint of Annie Sloan’s Duck Egg

Tuscan Mirror Macro

Or, here’s something that has no intricate details at all, but still turned out pretty awesome…

Large Mirror

Unfortunately, I don’t have a true “BEFORE” picture – this is the mirror painted in Annie Sloan’s Paris Grey.

Reclaimed Bookshelf copy

AFTER: hand-distressed, dry-brushed with Old White, and dark waxed.

Large Mirror Macro

What do you think – do you have a mirror needing a bit of an update? If so, I’d love to see before and after pictures!

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