A Little Vintage Desk

I know this desk could have been taken in a million different directions, but with Easter coming up I was looking for something that was perhaps in those softer pastel colours. But… you know me… it couldn’t be that simple! I also wanted something with a little bit of whimsy without adding too much over the top colour (for a change!)

The desk started out looking like this…

Pretty cute, right? Before I could get started though, there were actually some repairs that had to be made. The wood was pretty dry and many of the drawer joints had become unglued so… all were cleaned, new wood glue added and all clamped together to allow the glue to dry with nice tight joints.

Then it was ready for painting. I decided on a soft lavender colour but, of course, I didn’t have any on hand so mixed up my own! The whole piece received a base coat and then two coats of lavender and then allowed to dry thoroughly.

When you are looking to do stripes you will need to be taping off areas. Ensuring that your base coats are nice and dry helps ensure that the tape will not be inadvertently lifting off any of that base coat. Stripes were added to the two sides of the desk and to the inner foot well area also.

The checkerboard pattern added to the front face of the drawer fronts was hand painted. I did measure the internal area to decide on the appropriate ‘size’ of the checkerboard squares, cutting a piece of cardstock to the appropriate width. I used this as a guide, drawing the lines on lightly with pencil before hand filling the alternating squares with black. I didn’t worry about getting them perfect and I added small gold dots in each corner of the squares for a little more interest and because it also hides any major flaws.

To get the dots on the desk top and on the drawer fronts I just dipped a flat nail head into paint and pressed it where the dot needed to be. I used two different sizes – each corresponding to the size of dot I needed. Easy! Additional gold paint was used to highlight the existing mouldings and trim to provide a little more contrast but I chose not to overdo it with too much glitz and glam – adding just enough to provide some highlights and interest.

All was waxed and buffed when done. The original hardware was painted black and… done!


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