Sunday, February 27, 2011

One Ugly Green Shelf?

So my Grandma Carol passed away a year ago this March. I loved my Grandma very much, but I'll be perfectly honest: the woman was a pack rat. Thus explaining the OCD tendencies that my brother and I exhibit in regards to cleanliness and organization. There was a benefit of saving everything the way she did, there were tons of treasures in her little apartment. I acquired cute mason jars, some excellent retro books for altered art, an adorable wooden sled that my mom and her siblings used as kids, and a horrible, heinous, hideous, horrendous (any other h adjectives?) shiny, green book shelf.
Notice the atrocious color of the shelf... The awful color was also covered in a high gloss clear coat which only added to the unfortunate-ness of the shelf. But I claimed the shelf despite its sad look because I could see all sorts of potential! 

I had originally planned on painting the shelf a fresh, new color and so I started in on sanding off the original paint.

Before I commenced sanding I wiped the shelf down with a Simple Green and water solution to remove sticky residue and grime.  Then I used a circular palm sander and 3M 120 grit sandpaper to do the nitty-gritty work. Remember to wear a face mask and safety glasses when sanding, the dust it unbearable otherwise and you will have ruined your contacts! I also choose to use ear protection, either plugs or muffs, because the buzzing sound is rather irritating! 

After I completed my sanding, I vacuumed the shelf off using our brand new VacMaster Wall mounted system. Snazzy! I also gave it a towel wipe down to pick up the last of the residue. 
When I looked at the final sanded outcome, I was actually quite pleased with the color results.  The shelf had been a sky blue, which was pulled up through the green to give the shelf an awesome distressed look! Some of the shelf edges were down to bare wood which only added to the effect. Thanks to the sanding, the atrocious, gleaming, green color has been toned and I really like the look that I have left so I have decided against repainting. Well, for a while at least! :)

I am all about finding awesomely ugly pieces and reviving them into something fantastic and beautiful! 
Even if you can't necessarily pinpoint the renovated look, pieces can be saved for when an idea emerges, so scour your local garage sales and other potential "junk" locations and get going! 

PS: If you need help brainstorming, you can always shoot me a message, cause I LOVE sharing!

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