Lucky #13

Thirteen coats of paint. That’s how much it took to get this desk top DONE. Sanded, two coats of spray primer, four coats of spray paint, sanded again, two coats of liquid primer, one coat of spray paint, sanded again, two coats of liquid primer, two coats of high gloss enamel.. and DONE.

Alternate titles for this post include:

You may have won some battles, desk, but I won the war!
Five cans of spray paint and a quart of enamel later…
Well, that (should’ve been) easy.
and, of course
No seriously, just buy new furniture.

But the important thing is, I persevered and got the job done right. If you’ll recall, this is where I started with the $10 garage sale desk.

And here is where I considered quitting, because I just couldn’t figure out the texture problem I was having with the desk top.

I’m so glad that I pushed through and found a solution, because…. check it out!

Smoooooooth like a baby’s butt! Love love love love. In the end, this was the magic combination.

A normal liquid primer (two thin and even coats), and two coats of high gloss enamel paint. The metallic paint I used for the drawer pulls once everything else was done. I kind of really wish I would’ve just gone with this combination from the start. First, I already owned the primer. The enamel paint ended up costing me almost $16 (for a quart!) so that was a bummer after having already bought FIVE cans of spray paint (2 primer and 3 color), but I ended up only using about 1/10th of the can so I guess I’ll have lots left over for future projects.

I guess I’ll call it a life lesson. I don’t know why spray paint doesn’t work for me. I know it works for others, I’ve seen it on their blogs and just today I was at a friend’s house who used the EXACT SAME spray paint (both brand and color) to spray her baby’s dresser and bookcase and they looked fabulous. It might be the desk, or it might be that I’m just incapable. But the bottom line is that the enamel is a sure bet, and I actually prefer the nice gloss it has over the more subtle sheen of spray paint. I will definitely purchase high gloss enamel for all future furniture painting projects. I think I’ll save the spray paint for smaller items or things with lots of curves, like picture frames or chairs. More power to you if you can use spray paint successfully for big items, but this gal is sticking with the old school route. The only downside to my new love affair with high gloss enamel is I am now super bummed that I didn’t use it for my guest bedroom furniture (I used what the people at Lowes recommended, which was a normal satin finish paint). It has a much more matte texture and already has some scuffs on it. I may be forced to wipe it all down and do one coat of a white enamel on top of it all to smooth things out.

But enough about my new-found love. Let’s get to some more desk porn. (Now that just sounded a little wrong didn’t it?)


And as you may have noticed, I bought a desk chair! Here was my original inspiration for a chair.

So imagine my excitement when I found this very similar chair at Home Goods for a mere $129!

And one more shot of them together, because I love the combination.

It isn’t quite as wide at the base as the inspiration chair, but that was actually part of my wish list because I wanted the chair to be able to fit under the desk when needed.

So, let’s wrap up the cost of this project.

Grand total: $50
Desk – $10
Spray paints- $25
Enamel Paint- $15

Grand total if I’d done enamel first: $25
Desk- $10
Enamel Paint- $15

I was feeling a little badly about that at first, but when I was walking through target today, I spotted these.

Tiny little end tables in almost the exact color I just used (and not even that well made) for $59.99 each! So I guess $50 is still a total steal for a super cute 50s-ish teal desk.

And as a completely random aside– why do you always run into people when you look your worst? I generally have a strict self-imposed rule about at least wearing normal clothes out of the house. Most people probably wouldn’t need to make a rule about this, but since I pretty much live in yoga pants at home, I kind of needed to draw a line in the sand somewhere. And for me, that line is public. Unless I’m actually going to work out, no stretchy pants allowed in public.

But then today. I had a newborn shoot this afternoon, and I wanted to stop at target first for a football.* The problem is I decided to bend my no-stretchy-pants rule for this shoot because I tend to spend the entirety of my 2-hour newborn shoots crawling/sprawling on the floor. And since this one happened to be for a good friend, I wanted to be comfortable. And I decided a QUICK trip into target on the way couldn’t hurt. Except I saw someone I used to know from high school, who I haven’t seen SINCE high school. Awesome.

At least I was also wearing a sports bra, so maybe she assumed I just came from working out? Ugh, whatever.

But, back to the topic at hand… desk is done, and I am happy. I plan to make some time this weekend to rearrange my new office space to get the desk where it needs to be. I think I’m going to use next week as a trial period for working up there just to make sure I like it before I invest the time and money (well, really more the time because paint is pretty cheap) in painting the room. I’ll let you know how it goes!

*I wanted the football because this was my first newborn boy shoot and I needed some kind of prop. The dad is a huge Patriots fan, like B, so it seemed fitting. And seriously, how cute is this kid?

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6 thoughts on “Lucky #13

  1. Ugh, I’m so sorry this project ended up being such a pain for you! I’m glad you found a solution that works – so strange that the spray paint was so awful for you! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ It looks absolutely fantastic, though, so that’s what matters!!

  2. @amanda- Thanks! And yea– I mean I think a big part of DIY is just figuring out what works for you and what you like. Now I know what to do next time– and I’ve already decided I’m painting 2 more pieces for that room so I guess it was glad i found out what works!

    @amanda tal- thanks! I’m just happy it is done haha.

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