My latest projects all started with a bench and Pinterest.
I bought this bench to sit on our side porch, and while the fit was perfect; the color was not. So, the first order of business was to re-paint it.
What a difference a coat of paint makes–it doesn’t even look like the same piece of furniture! The bench looks so clean and fresh, and it creates the perfect spot to sit on the porch. Now I need to dress it up and make it even more welcoming, and this is where Pinterest comes in. After all, there is no better place than Pinterest to search for ideas and options on anything and everything!
As is so often the case with Pinterest, not only did I find a great project idea for the bench, but I also found several others that I wanted to make–all using chalkboard paint. Let me show you how I transformed a suitcase, a mason jar, and a metal tray.
Let’s start with the mason jar. I have a small window at the bottom of my stairs, and I had been looking for some type of nautical decoration to put on the ledge. When I ran across directions to paint a mason jar with a striped pattern using chalkboard paint, I knew my search was over. I followed the directions exactly, using Americana Decor’ Chalky Finish paint in Everlasting and Vintage colors. Once the jar was painted, I completed the nautical theme by adding some rope around the neck of the jar, creating a tag with “from sea to shining sea” on it, and filling the jar with driftwood pieces.
I love how this turned out–it’s even better than I imagined it would be! I love the colors and the stripes, but my favorite part is the distressing of the words on the jar, which is accomplished by rubbing sand paper over the lettering after the painting is complete. Here is a better picture of the distressing, and also a close-up of the tag:
I cut the tag shape out of vintage paper, and the wording is computer-generated. Before I move on to the metal tray, I wanted to show you a couple of pictures of the jar on the window ledge. I can’t help but smile every time I walk by it!
Now, on to the metal tray. During my Pinterest search, I came across a picture of a tray that had been transformed into a message board of sorts, with the help of chalkboard paint. I liked the idea, so I decided to give it a try. I started by spray painting the entire tray in an aqua color, and then I painted the bottom of the tray again with several coats of black chalkboard paint.
I was curious to see whether the chalkboard paint would actually work like a “real” chalkboard, and it absolutely does. I can see myself using this tray for all kinds of different occasions, like this summer drink station.
I’ve saved the best for last, as it is the transformation of the suitcase that I am most excited about. When I came across a picture of a vintage suitcase turned into a welcome sign, I knew that’s what I wanted to put on my bench. You can find these little suitcases all over–craft as well as home goods stores–and they come in all sorts of colors and themes. I chose this suitcase for it’s sea glass color scheme as well as the ocean life images. I painted a patch in the center of one side of the suitcase with the same black chalkboard paint, and here’s the result:
I was worried that the paint wouldn’t adhere to the smooth, glossy surface of the suitcase, but after letting it cure for 3 days, the paint was permanent. Now let me show you how this suitcase looks on the bench:
This is exactly what my bench needed, and it creates a unique and warm welcome to all of our guests. Who could ask for more?!
If you want more information and/or instructions on any of these projects, please check out my Pinterest board.
Happy 4th of July to each and every one of you, and, as always, remember:
“May the waves kiss your feet, / the sand be your seat, / and your friends out-number the stars.”