Since I began my office makeover several weeks ago, I’ve often compared the project to when I was pregnant with my daughter, Mel. I know this sounds like a very STRANGE analogy, but stick with me, I guarantee it will make sense soon enough.
You see, like my pregnancy-I started this project feeling happy and excited. After all- I’d been in that spare bedroom for almost a year now, and hubby stilled called it my ‘fake’ office. He did so-because there was absolutely nothing in it that room, but an old desk, a chair I borrowed from Mom L, and a book case that was mostly empty, except for a few photo’s. On top of that- the walls were white (and bare) and the closet was stuffed with the overflow of clothes that didn’t fit in our master closet.
Sounds like an inspiring place to do work for eight hours a day, doesn’t it? Well, it wasn’t for me, and that is probably why I spent most of my days, working at the dining room table. But that didn’t always work out so well, especially if I was still working when hubby got home (I usually am), and he wanted to watch TV, which is right in the next room!!! Never mind that whenever it was time to eat dinner-I had to pack up all my work, computer, printer, etc, before setting the table!
Which brings me back to my initial analogy. I was excited about finally having a REAL office, until a bad case of morning sickness started to plague me.
Enter the antique vanity. Charming for sure. Beautiful? To some, yes. Useful? No. At least not for me, who is lucky to have five minutes to put on some mascara, before hubby is honking the horn in the driveway!
And then one day-the idea began to hatch in my brain that this old vanity COULD be useful-as my new desk! The only problem was-the veneer on top was in bad shape, and would definitely need to be removed.
Wrong! As you can see by my trusty little scraper, who sadly, didn’t make it through the entire process! Poor thing-I hope he is doing well in tool heaven.
Needless to say- I wasn’t doing so well, after three days of trying everything in God’s green earth to remove that darn veneer! A steam iron-wet towels-scraper (I bought a new one)-you name it-I tried it.
As you all know-I am not a patient person, but in the end, that is exactly what I had to be, if I was ever going to get the job done. And I did get the job done. But just when I thought the morning sickness was over, and it would be smooth sailing from here……..
Another plague came over me (in my pregnancy it was swollen feet and achy back) and I realized that all the drawers on the vanity were covered in veneer too!
Since I had already put the first coat of homemade chalk paint on the desk (3 parts Simply White paint-to 1 part baking soda and water), there was no turning back. Those darn drawers had to be dealt with, if I was ever going to get to the finish line. At this point, I had two options. 1. Since the veneer was in tact, I could just sand it down and paint over it. 2. Bite my tongue, and go through the same process as I had with the desk.
You’re going to think I am a glutton for punishment, but I went with option 2. Why? Because the last thing I wanted at this point, was to paint over the veneer-only to have it start peeling off, days later!
After tackling the drawers, I had come to that point in this project,(like I did when I was pregnant), where it wasn’t fun anymore, and I just wanted it to be over! But then I found this stencil that I’d purchased long ago-but never used. It was perfect for my desk-and once I applied it with some black paint-and began distressing the rest of the desk, that old feeling of excitement and elation for the end result, was finally coming back.
By the time I had added the basket I purchased last week at Goodwill (I used one of those Command hangars-so it can easily be removed without damaging the desk), I was over the moon happy!
And all the frustration and hardship I’d gone through, was completely wiped away from my memory, as I looked with amazement in my eyes, at what I had created!