Google+ Nine Red: Modern Stool Makeover

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Modern Stool Makeover

Hello World! Well, I'm waiting for the sun to come out so I can shoot some pretty shots of the backyard bench that we FINALLY finished! I'm so. so. SO happy to be done with that thing. It was the biggest hurtle back there, and with it out of the way I feel like I can do whatever I want. I'm free! If you want to travel back and see what I'm talking about, hop over here.

But in the meantime, let me share the easiest little makeover on the planet, whose technique can be applied to so many pieces of furniture.  It has a modern look that's easy to achieve. Piece of cake as they say. (Is cake easy?)
Start with a simple piece of furniture. Pretty much anything made of plywood is likely to have very simple edges. Here's mine:
A certain stool from IKEA called Frosta is made of flat edge plywood, and is pretty common to find in the thrift shops. Or, I guess, Ikea itself. My stool here I SWEAR is from a daycare furniture set. I worked in daycare for 1,000 years - believe me, I know this stuff. It's super glossy plywood furniture.  I found this beast in our local thrift shop, for $1. I'm guessing it was too rough to make it home with anyone else. Lucky me! Just look for something flat, with flat edges. That's the best.

In the spirit of keeping it clean & modern, I painted all the interior legs white.
White used to  be a rare color choice for me, but I've really come to appreciate it lately & I'm hooked.  I'm using a plain white gloss paint, the gloss also helps down the line when you're staining, you can quickly wipe off any drips.  While your painting the interior flat edges,  don't worry too much about getting on the main edges. If anything, you WANT to overlap a little.  Because you can do this after:
Using a fine sandpaper (#220) on my sander, I gave a quick, flat swipe down the sides to remove my overpainting issues.  See how clean that got?

Up next, Pre-Stain the areas of the stool you're going to stain:
Love this stuff. I never used to use it, and then when I finally tried it? Worth it! You only have to wait about 15 minutes before you can start  the real deal. I'm using, Dark Walnut of course:
Just make sure that the pre-stain conditioner you are using is the same type as your stain. In my case, both are oil based. If your stain is waterbased, use a water based conditioner. Makes sense.

Stain the top & the legs.  I have a pile of old T-shirts, and I just cut a good square out and I dip right into the stain. That's my favorite way to stain wood, I'm not the biggest fan of the brush method - but to each their own.  Also, the T-shirt way helps you cleanly stain the edges:
That's my lil T-shirt square. just a tiny dab, and carefully stain the edges.  If you have any drips on the white, quickly wipe it off with another square of T-shirt that DOESN'T have the stain. Faster!

Let it dry, give it a coat of your favorite clear coat (I use Minwax Polycrylic, Satin in this case)
That's it! This is the perfect addition to our wildly colored patio, and ties in the white from one of our tables, the white in the rugs, the white in the banister behind the barstools, and as you'll SOON see, the white backing on our big bench/daybed thingy.
Plus it's handy for a short person like me. Whenever a light bulb goes out on our string lights, I can hop right up all by myself.  The rest of the time, it's a cute little floater stool that offers a seat, anytime anyplace.

If yours has screws in the top like mine, and they bother you, you could always screw them down a little farther - fill them with wood putty - sand & stain. I, didn't really care about them, and left them.

OK I'm off to photoshoot the backyard, can't wait to show you! Have a great rest of your week & a wonderful weekend, get out there and enjoy the days before winter hits - yikes!


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