Monday, October 18, 2010

Office Desk Makeover - Before & After

First of all, let me say I’m IN AWE of you ladies that re-do furniture.  The before and after photos almost NEVER show the blood, sweat and tears of the “during”.  And now that I’ve done it, I can truly appreciate all the hard work I know you gals are putting into your furniture makeovers!
I’ll get right to the good stuff…

BEFORE

AFTER
  
 

Now for the details…
This desk was a $35 Craigslist purchase I made five months ago (May).  Yes, it took me that long (it’s now October) because I made the mistake of buying it at the beginning of summer.  A Texas summer, if you get my meaning. And now that the temps have dropped into the double digits again, I’ve been able to wrap up this “little” project.
I purchased this sad looking desk for $35, hauled it home in hubby’s pickup truck, and promptly plopped it on the driveway for some “before” photos…

 


Pretty rough finish…there is a nail bubble in this area that doesn’t really show in the photo…


 


The desk came with broken hardware which was fine ‘cause I knew I’d replace the dated look anyway… 

  
scuffed edges… 






The side and back panels were a totally different kind of wood than the frame, desktop, and drawers…

I knew from the beginning what I was going to paint on these side panels… 


The photo below shows the desktop finished (restained) and the bottom portion stripped of the original finish.  It’s all ready to paint now…


Ooooh, creamy cottage white goodness…finally starting to see some progress!  (Desk color = Behr Cozy Cottage in Eggshell finish) 


Below shows the markings of the harlequin pattern I painted on the side panels.  I used a pencil, ruler, and a measuring tape.  I started by marking an “X” from corner to corner and worked my way to the edges, spacing lines 3 inches apart.



I wasn’t too worried about leaving the pencil lines.  I made the pencil marks pretty light, plus I knew the paint and the glaze wash would cover them up, which it did!



I used my acrylic paint brushes and went to work on the diamonds.  It took 3 coats to get the look I wanted.  The photo below was taken after one coat, and you can still see the unevenness of the color.  (Harlequin pattern = Behr Gobi Desert in flat matte finish.  I only bought a sample size ‘cause I knew I wouldn’t need much. See it at bottom of the pic?)


I didn’t get any photos of the “washing” technique but you can find tutorials of it all over blogland.  I used Ralph Lauren’s Smoke Glaze and just brushed it on, then wiped it off.  The glaze gets into the crevices (and believe me, this desk had a TON) and gives a nice aged look to the finish. 


  
I’ve been wanting to use these popular cup-type drawer pulls for some time now…



A few final close-ups of the aged finish.  I also distressed all the edges with a sander.




Finally finished… 

 
 

Thanks for looking!

52 comments:

  1. Your desk looks amazing. I love the diamonds and the glazing really brings out the detail. You did an awesome job, I am sure you are so pleased!

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  2. just saw this on better after and I LOVE it!!! I'm a diamond girl myself

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  3. Oh My, this is Beautiful! You are right, it is hard work! But when you see this, you know it is worth it!

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  4. Duuuude. You rocked the ever lovin' shit outta this furny makeover! Am straight up in love with this desk - it's absolutely perfect and she is so happy you gave her a brand new life {heart!} Enjoy!

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  5. Beautiful! Saw your desk on Better After and had to come an see how you did it. Great job!!

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  6. WOW! You did such a great job on this desk. It's gorgeous and so stylish!! I know what you mean about the summer heat. Not much got done around here this summer either. Your desk was worth the wait. Love it!

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  7. This is so not even my style, but you totally make me WANT it. It came out fabulous!

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  8. found your blog thru "before & after" and love this desk..had to laugh out loud because I have gobi desert on 1/2 my walls and cozy cottage as my trim color! :)

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  9. This is incredible!! Absolutely beautiful and it appears well worth all the work! Thank you so much for the inspiration!

    ... found you via Better After!

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  10. Just hopped over from Better After. This came out beautiful, really nicely done!

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  11. A M A Z I N G! You really took that desk to the next level, who cares how long it took you to get to it, it was well worth it right? Dang, girl, you did good.

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  12. Visiting from Better After ~ that desk is gorgeous!! You did SUCH an amazing job, definitely one of my favorite furniture re-dos ever!

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  13. WOW -- That's fabulous. I'm your newest follower and look forward to more great projects from you! (no pressure -- haha). I would love for you to stop by my blog and if so inspired, please follow me in return.

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  14. Love the makeover! When I saw it on BetterAfter I knew I had to come over and visit your blog. You must have the patience of Job to tackle such a tedious project and end us with such a beautiful piece of artwork. Now I'm going to check out the rest of your blog. It's very nice to meet you!

    Sherry @ A Happy Valentine

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  15. I really love this, it looks fabulous! I also got a buffet type piece for $35 bucks and it is sitting in the dining room waiting for a makeover. This will be my inspiration!

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  16. Oooo La La! Thanks for sharing your beautiful desk. My mother is a painter and she always pencils on her pictures before painting them. Visiting from Better After.

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  17. Saw you on Better After and love the desk. Refinishing is hard work, but with results like this, it is so worth it. I'm sure you are proud of your work...we all are! Beautiful!

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  18. ADORABLE!!!!!! TOTALLY MY STYLE AND LOVING IT!

    XO, MALLORY

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  19. Ohh this is a verryy nice desk!! You have quite the talent!

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  20. WOW! This is fantastic! What a difference!! Saw this on Better After and came over to see how you did it.

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  21. i can't believe how much i love this! i would pay hundreds of dollars for this desk!

    Kimra
    http://crafty-cove.blogspot.com
    http://kimraskreations.blogspot.com

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  22. I loved your project. It was very creative and well done. I've chosen it as one of my bookmarks for this week. If you would like to stop by and see your feature, as well as grab a button, you will find the post here:

    http://www.bobbypinsboardwalk.com/2010/10/bookmarked-on-boardwalk_31.html

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  23. WOW!!!!! Just beautiful and such an accomplishment!! Now let's talk about an old cabinet I need redone, hmmmm....

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  24. Very cool, you did an excellent job. What a great dresser find!

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  25. I have a similar desk sitting in my garage - I think I'm going to be a copycat. It's gorgeous!

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  26. gorgeous! super job on the entire piece.
    gail

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  27. I also have a similar desk we found at a yard sale for $5.00. I love that cottage color you used. I'll be a copy cat too!!

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  28. That is truely AMAZING!! I LOVE it!! Great job!!
    I'm your newest follower...come check out my blog when you get a chance :-)
    Shantel @
    www.itsapricelesslife.blogspot.com

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  29. Cute enough to use in any room in the house. Love your ideas for the side. Great tutorial. Thanks. Lori L

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  30. wow, I REALLY love the job you did on this! I'm a new follower as of now. Hope you will check out my blog too.
    http://secondtimearounddesigns.blogspot.com/

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  31. Great job - I LOVE harlequin patterns!!!

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  32. First off, it's just gorgeous. I love the colors, the glaze, the harlequin. But 2nd - thanks so much for the diamond tutorial. I've wanted to paint those dang diamonds for so long, but I don't want to measure and measure and measure. You made it seem simple!

    Would love for you to drop by and link up to Passion for Paint this weekend.

    http://MuralMaker1.blogspot.com

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  33. I love this desk!!!! I love what you did and your hard work most certainly paid off!

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  34. The details on your desk blow me away. The harlequin is so gorgeous yet you didn't overdue it. STUNNING.

    I've featured you in SNS #66's sidebar this weekend. :) Thanks for linking up!

    Donna
    http://funkyjunkinteriors.blogspot.com/

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  35. Oh it turned out fantastic! You did a terrific job and how fun. I just love how you blended everything! Wow!
    Cheers!

    Cyndy

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  36. Really beautiful job...and love the colors, so soft and warm!
    ~Pam

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  37. What a beautiful piece! I love the softness of colors you used.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Traci

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  38. You did an amazing job - just beautiful.

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  39. Cutest desk makeover of the year award! The harlequin is so unexpected, but dead on! Yes, it is a massive undertaking to refinish something properly, but so well worth it. I know you are very proud of this treasure. Just love the stained top!

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  40. Awesomeness! I love that harlequin pattern this reminds me of my kitchen backsplash. Talk about a makeover..you did it girl! I am your newest follower, would love for you to visit sometime.

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  41. WOW!!! I love the harlequin patterns. You have great vision to see what this sad desk could become. Wonderful job.

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  42. Great Desk, a great buy for $35.

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  43. I am in LOVE with this. I have a desk just like it that I was thinking about redoing. Now I know what I want to do with it!

    http://ashtonscraftycreations.blogspot.com/

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  44. This turned out beautifully! I love the harlequin design on the side the most!

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  45. So beautiful I have the perfect desk for this project just not sure if I have I have the patience....

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  46. WOW! Just surfed here. This is Utterly GORGEOUS!!!! amazing work! thanks for sharing this masterpiece :-)

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  47. This is a beautiful desk! you did a great job. I paint funky furniture and am actually thinking about doing some other art form instead because it IS so darn much work! I know how much work you went to with the glazing and the diamonds, it looks awesome! Great tutorial!

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