Category: Furniture

Antique Table Up-do

Sometimes small projects end up having the biggest impact.  This table was easy to do and was quick to sell so I’m going to look for more of these!  Two colors: @ArtDeco Relic (dark gray) and @ArtDeco Lace (white) light sanding and clear wax.  As always when possible, I removed the top and painted both pieces separately. Boom, bang, done!



Vintage Butler Style Magazine Rack


I found this nice little magazine rack for $8 and found a comparable for $48, woot!  As you can see the one I found needed some help. I decided to create 2 embellishments for it using my new molds by Prima Marketing, specifically Baroque No. 2 by Orchid Designs. Additionally, I’ve wanted to do a verdigris finish for a long time, so I thought this would be a good practice piece.

The first time I tried making the molds, I used the Paper Clay that is recommended and my results weren’t great.  This clay is what it states — “paper” and was hard for me to work with and takes 12 hours to dry.  The clay itself was really dry, not pliable and my molds cracked after they dried. This coupled with the fact that I’m impatient (I have one mold & need 2 embellishments!), I decided to try KwikWood apoxy putty by JB Weld. If you haven’t tried this stuff, it’s amazing!  It is so much fun to work with.  My Aunt introduced it to me when she had us make Gourd roosters.  She uses it for the feet, beak and comb because it dries super fast and takes paint immediately.  It’s not exactly thrifty, but it worked well for me on this project.  (I also used the putty to fix a few blemishes and chips in the wood paneling on the magazine rack.)

I simply glued an embellishment on each end and used bronze metallic paint for the first coat.  I then covered the piece with @ArtDeco Chalky Paint, color Pleasure. Using dark wax, I rubbed the colors together.  I have to admit that I’m not thrilled with the results AND I would like to get more green in my next verdigris mix so I’ll have to try again on another piece.  I’m done looking at this one for now 😉 Stay tuned!

Charming Cart

When I saw people chalk painting antique/vintage tea carts, I knew I had to find one to up-do myself.  I bought this cutie on Facebook Marketplace from college kids for $35.

As you can see, this cart required a good cleaning.  For this I simply used dish-soap and water that I combined in a spray bottle.  I took off the wheels and flipped the cart upside down so that I could paint underneath first. Interestingly, when I’ve perused some shops that sell chalk-painted furniture, often the undersides are not painted.  Have you seen this too?  I’m sure it’s a time and money saver, but my OCD won’t let me.

I love the butter-yellow color, @DecoArt Delicate, and decided to paint the top, drawer-front and tray with this color.  Dark gray, @DecoArt Relic, is one of my favorites too, so I painted the wheels and needed to tie these colors together somehow.  Hence I glued, then trimmed the cream and gray fabric ribbon from Hobby Lobby on the outer sides of the tray and drawer.

The butter wing-top was missing something, so I decided that the fleur-de-lis stencil was in order (thanks Donna!).

Each wheel had a groove where I imagine there once was rubber tread or something similar. Since this was gone, I decided to fill the void with rope. It was a fairly time consuming project, but I think it turned out pretty cute, what do you think?

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FUNctional Card Table

When I saw this old card table at Goodwill for $20, I knew that it had major potential.  I loved the fact that the center of it was removable and that it was already framed.  This made me think that when it wasn’t being used as a card table, it could easily double as framed wall art.  I searched high and low for an inexpensive poster that was 27″ square; which turned out not to be the easiest task. Eventually I found what I was looking for at @AllPosters .com for about $10!  Full disclosure: I didn’t take as much time and care as I should have to Mod Podge the poster to the card table center and ended up with bubbles that I tried to fix to no avail; but I can live with it for now 🙂  Lastly @DecoArt white/blanc chalk paint & clear wax made for a splendid finish!  It is the perfect mate for my new chair from my favorite chalking buddy, Beth Treadwell @coloradostyled ❤


Abandoned plum desk

I cannot take credit for the paint job on this sweet little desk; I purchased it already painted.  I often find pieces that someone has started an “up-do” and sadly, given up on.  Everything was nicely done, however the paint color rubbed off easily on my hands which is perhaps why it was abandoned.  Since I loved the color, and the chippy, aged texture underneath, I thought I’d see if I could resuscitate her.  Low and behold a thin layer of Clear Satin Polycrylic by @Minwax did the trick!  Since all of the hard work was already done, I simply jazzed up the drawer, changed out the knob and this lovely is now spending her new life with her new owner.

Thrifty Rehab Plum Desk   Thrifty Rehab Plum Desk

Meet Lacey!

laceyI named this table Lacey because I used spray painted over lace to create the eye-catching top of this little, vintage cutie. Supposedly you can reuse the same lace over and over on other projects; I’ll let you know if that’s true when I do!  I honestly wrestled with this table for a while, it was one of my first projects. I originally spray painted this table gray and yellow and well, it looked foolish.  I wasn’t sure I could fix it, so I nearly gave it back to the thrift store. I’m glad I didn’t because it turned out adorable!  I didn’t have to strip it either, with chalk paint, you can simply paint over just about anything! @DecoArt Relic (gray) and Honor (blue)

Stereo cabinet turned storage

insidestereocabinetbeforestereocabinetcompleteafterACK! I can’t find any pictures of this stereo cabinet as it appeared originally… but trust me, it needed help!  Someone had tried refinishing it and, well, it didn’t work.  The interior was painted a strange Pepto Bismol pink color (which looks white in this picture) and the exterior was stained — over VARNISH — a red-er color stain.  I’m sure the owner had good intentions, but please don’t try to stain over varnish people! You will never match the original varnish color!! I pulled out the strips of wood on the bottom, originally meant for record storage, and repainted the inside blue.

Had some extra fabric left over from a previous project, so used this to cover the inside shelf all the way around. Modge Podge is my best friend for covering wood with fabric.   While the doors were off, painted them with a super fun Rose Metallic paint that I hadn’t tried, Buttercream by @JoAnn_Stores.  I’m sad because I really like but have heard that JoAnn’s is discontinuing the Buttercream line 🙁  Then finished this lovely off with knobs from @HobbyLobby; now I’m officially a #knobsnob!!!  I named this project Two/Too Fly Blue because two flies managed to get stuck in the paint on the doors! Oh how I miss the warm weather… even the pesky flies.



Fun blue mirror


mirrorhangingPicked up this mirror @Savers for $8.  It was cute but someone had obviously painted it black, the paint was chipping and also was on the mirror.  I like to see when others have tried to change or update furniture, but I don’t understand why sometimes people don’t take the extra steps and take the item apart before painting.  I think this person ended up giving this mirror away because it didn’t turn out well.  Believe me, I am the queen of trying shortcuts and let me tell you, they NEVER work out.  If you invest a little extra time, you’ll be happier with your results.

mirrorpaintedblueSlapped some @decoart Vintage chalky finish and voila, a new bright fun mirror!  Finished with Deco Art clear wax, a little distressing and have a brand new vintage looking mirror!  Fun, easy and inexpensive!


Goodwill… more like Greatwill!

Since we are on the topic of thrift store reviews, I would like to include an experience from another Thrifty shopper…

Erica at the Goodwill in Westminster made my first real adventure into the furniture rehab world a great experience. I was interested in a small table that had been priced at $20 a few days earlier. I really didn’t have time to find a customer assistant, but couldn’t get it off my mind. It was cute! When I went back a few days later, the table was there but wasn’t tagged. That’s when I found Erica who introduced me to the inter-workings (new word) of Goodwill’s business model – from receiving, production, distribution, re-distribution, and on to the floor for sales. Quite an operation run by some of the nicest people around. I have a whole new respect for what they do.

She asked me what I thought the price of the table should be. I said $10 and she said how about $6.99! When I asked her how they price items, she told me that all personnel are encouraged to help customers make a value offer when asked. If an offer seems too low, the sales agent will suggest a value price, but at the end of the day making a customer feel they’re being treated fairly and getting a good deal is most important. Each store has a daily sales quota, and it’s very important to have repeat customers. I’m in. A whole new world of thrift shopping! Who knew…obviously Thrifty Rehab does (wink, wink)!

Thanks for your input Pam!  Please keep your experiences coming in and as always, happy Thrifting!

Thrift Store 411

The most frequent question I am asked: where do you find the best deals?  This is difficult to answer, as I cannot lump or label any one company, so instead I’ll relay my experiences prefaced with the fact that even though I am always looking for a good deal, I am not a “bargainer.”  Thrift stores collect money for charities – worthy causes, and my aim is never to shortchange or haggle prices.

ARC on Quebec and County Line was where I found my first score and where my addiction began.  I picked up this vintage electric desk fan; excellent condition mechanically and visually – $9.  Of course I have been back many times since and have not found anything remotely as memorable and believe me, I have savant-like memory when it comes to thrifting (real life, not so much).  Recently they had an antique sewing desk marked at $80.  It was in serious disrepair and needed more TLC  than the average person has time.  Weeks later it is still there but now at 50% off — still not a deal.  I told an employee that if they would part with it for $20 that I would consider taking it.  The employee abruptly told me that they won’t take less than what it is listed.  Combine this with the fact that most items are suddenly outrageously priced, my local ARC went from my favorite, to least favorite.  Don’t even get me started about my experience at the ARC in Loveland, CO.  On the flip side, I had a stellar experience at the ARC on Colfax & Pierce in Lakewood — the employees helped me fill my car with 3 stuffed cart loads.  I apologized to the young manager about getting so much with a small car.  Her comment was “don’t worry ma’am, I’m really good at Tetris!” She is a keeper and so is this ARC.

Goodwill has several locations near me and all locations are fair and the employees are all helpful.  I got my beautiful dining room table & chairs at my local Goodwill for $80.  Beth got this gorgeous hutch for $50 and Pam got a full sized hutch for $50 — stay tuned for their up-cycle stories & pics!

I have to admit that for the longest time I didn’t even know that Savers was a thrift store but now that I know, they are a regular stop.  The employees are SUPER nice and friendly, so I give them 5 stars.  One deal was this antique wicker-back rocker for $7.

Last but not least, my favorite thrift store… drum roll… Mile High Thrift Store on Sheridan.  Mile High only takes cash, but you won’t need much as their prices are the lowest by far.  I would be there everyday if it were not for the location and hours Monday thru Saturday 9-6.  Now that you know about this little secret gem tell me about your favorites! Happy thrifting!