Decoupaged Dresser Do-over (and an Armoire)

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This dresser was my first furniture purchase as an “adult”.  I bought it from a woman in my friend’s  dorm at Parson’s when I was staying with him during the summer after college.  I hauled this thing around NYC to 3 different apartments and then an apartment and 2 homes in Western Mass.  It was desperately in need of a makeover.  (It was probably in need of a makeover when I first got it, but all I did was chop off the legs so it would fit under my loft bed with a clothes hanging rack over the top.)

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So… I spent a couple days decoupaging pages from “Thoreau: On Education” on each of the drawers.  It was actually a really easy project.  I sanded it down a little (mostly just to get the grime off) and then just slapped on the pages.  The hardest part was actually just keeping dog-hair out of the glue while it dried.  I like the little illustrations from some of the chapter title pages that I snuck in there.

 

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This armoire was even more desperately in need of a makeover.  I originally intended to strip and refinish it when I bought it, but as I got to work I started realizing that a lot of the wood was veneer.  IMG_4703

So instead of stripping, I painted and covered it up.  The top is actually a really deep purple acrylic (that looks brown in most light).  The cards are from a set of Penguin Books postcards that I got on Amazon (I found the link in a neat wall-art project on Pinterest).  I laid out a kind of a pattern with the cards, took them off in piles, and then started decoupaging them back on.  To hold them down while they dried (because there was a bit of a relief design that I had to cover up and because they REALLY wanted to warp), I laid my all my wife’s cookbooks on top of them for about a day.  A couple new knobs, a ribbon across the bottom and voila!

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These were both fun, easy projects and it’s almost like having new pieces of furniture.  They’ve really brightened up and added interest to our room.

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Button “Bouquets”

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I made a bunch of these button bouquets for a craft fair a few years ago (didn’t sell any).  I still have a few collecting dust at home and gave the rest away for Christmas presents that year.  This one is at my parents’ house.  The cool thing about it is that it has a bunch of vintage mother-of-pearl buttons from my grandmother’s nurse’s hats.  It has some tiny black beads in the little jar to hold it in with some small rocks on top.

ImageThis one is my favorite and sits on my mantle.  It’s in a cute little vintage pipe tobacco can. They’re super easy to make.  I used my needle nose pliers and a medium gage wire (heavy enough to maintain its shape but light enough to be manipulated and fit through the button holes).  I started off making a “trunk” with a few strands and left plenty of room at the top for the “branches”.  Then, I just found the buttons I wanted, strung them onto the wire, and twisted them up!  This one is held into the container with floral foam with some colored rocks glued on top.

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This one wasn’t made for a specific container, so I just topped it into this vase.  I like the red buttons and, properly placed in a room, can add some good chi in terms of feng shui.

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This one was also not made with a certain container in mind so I popped it into a brown bottle I had lying around.  It’s not very proportionate but it’s cute.

UPDATE:

I was checking out some other button bouquets on other blogs and found some great ones.  Here are my favorites:

http://justcallmemissdiy.wordpress.com/2012/07/26/button-bouquet/ – The woman profiled makes amazing bouquets… and the blog has tons of great ideas.

http://blog.mjtrim.com/2008/09/02/diy-button-bouquet/  – I love this store- there are so many cool ribbons and notions it’s hard to choose.

http://pumpkinandpye.com/2013/05/27/steampunk-wedding-bouquet/ – And this is my absolute favorite.  It’s not buttons, but the only thing better is steampunk!

I added ribbon to the “stems” of these two and it made them look pretty spiffy.  They’d make great boutineers, I think.

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