Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Father of Invention

This week I haven’t done mini posts because I was semi-obsessed with a new decorating scheme. I always blamed our lack of a decorating budget to excuse our shabby furniture and style. Last week I had a decorating rebirth in Wal-Mart at 10:00 PM. Ryan was sleeping off a headache. Bella was in bed for the night, and I had a few moments to myself, and a car.

I’m not an avid shopper by any stretch, but everything else was closed. Since the Wal-Mart food section was really boring, I advanced to the home décor section, pretending I was going to redecorate. I browsed the curtains for ideas before heading to hardware paint for color schemes. I filled my blank walls and windows with imaginary frames and swags. That was when I decided to act.

One of the worst culprits in slopifying the apartment, is our almost antique, plywood furniture ensemble. Online I found a cheap decorating tip that changed my life: Paint your mix’n’match wood furniture and put on matching knobs. Within a matter of two days I acquired two wooden dining room chairs, a wooden table, a wooden dresser and a wooden computer desk for free ( As you can see, there was a little bit of cleaning/ fixing up involved in the preparatory stages. I am still not sure what was stuck to the table, but it pretty much came off with a spatula.

Decorating with almost no money has been a catalyst for my creative juices. It might have been boring if I had disposable income and could fulfill my needs at Pier 1 and Macy’s.

Having a surplus of furniture in a one bedroom apartment absorbs any wiggle room that might have existed. Yesterday I hauled the stuff outside and began the process of painting them all. I decided to try my hand at a faux-crackle finish. I now think that might have been a bit ambitious as this is my first try at painting anything, besides a neon pink and purple birdhouse that I made a decade and a half ago.

I wanted surprise Ryan with all new, painted furniture when he gets home from ICMA on Wednesday night, but was too excited to keep it a secret. I need to do six coats (two coats of primer, base color, crackle medium, two coats of top color, plus lacquer) on each piece, and some of them are large with a lot of detail, before I go to work on Wednesday. Watching paint dry is less exciting than washing dishes.

I hope it works! I still have nightmares about that neon birdhouse.

If you have any almost-free decorating ideas let me know.


Sunset Stanley said...

Very creative. I have no idea how to decorate, especially on a budget.

P.S. I tagged you! Come check out my blog to see it!

Lani said...

What a fun project! Way to go on your goals too!