Hello amazing friends and welcome to Furniture Fixer Upper Day! I’m bringing y’all one very sweet stenciled desk makeover today!
Be sure to be on the lookout for my friends’ furniture flips at the bottom!
Today’s project piece is another freebie from one of my favorite neighbors:
This Summer, she texted me a photo of some furniture pieces she was putting on the curb to give me first dibs. I immediately put down my fork mid-dinner, and Jack and I headed right over to grab them up! (Not much will make me move faster than free furniture on my own street!)
I immediately knew I wanted the other two pieces, but she hadn’t expected me to be interested in the desk as well. How could I leave a perfectly good desk on the curb?
This sure was one ugly duckling though!
I’ve included a few affiliate links so you can find the products I love.
I started with Dixie Mud filling in a few areas that needed filling in:
Once the mud was completely dry, I sanded those areas smooth with my Ryobi rotary sander.
This desk had been painted brown. If you plan to paint over an already painted piece, you just need to sand enough to smooth out the existing finish. That is what I meant to do, but I must have been lost in thought and before I knew it, I had sanded half of the top off of the desk down to the wood!
No worries though…I just smoothed out the rest and continued on…
I used my orbital sander on most of it and then came back with my more petite corner cat sander for the smaller areas:
Some of the drawers were sticking, and I noticed that paint had built up on the inside edge where the drawers went in, so I sanded all those areas back to the wood.
I vacuumed up all the sanding dust with my shop vac.
Because this was an older piece and I had exposed the raw wood, I decided to play it safe and BOSS everything with White BOSS to prevent any possible bleed-through:
BOSS is an amazing odor and stain blocker! I gave everything one coat and allowed it to dry overnight. Proper dry time is KEY with BOSS!
Finally, it was time for paint!
I knew I wanted to use this gorgeous Lotus Bloom stencil:
So, I went in search of a color scheme that I liked and settled on Savannah Mist for the base:
If you see Savannah Mist on its own in the jar, it appears to be a gray. However, it is more of a gray-blue, and I just love it!
Adding the stencil
When I stencil, I prefer to use an acrylic craft paint like this white by Delta Ceramcoat.
I applied spray adhesive to the back of my Lotus Bloom stencil and used a smooth surface roller to roll the paint on:
As you can see, I taped off parts of the bottom of the stencil as I wanted the pattern to appear more like lace.
I rolled one coat lightly and then went back with a second coat once the paint was dry. Then, I immediately removed the stencil.
I let the paint on the stencil dry in between.
Once I had added the stencil in all the areas I wanted to, I let everything dry completely. I then went back and sanded everything smooth with 220 grit sandpaper wrapped around an old sanding sponge…
The reason I prefer acrylic paint for my stencils is that it washes off much more easily than chalk paint. I just ran the stencil under water and used a scraper to help remove the paint. I left it tacky side up to dry:
I sealed everything with Clear Coat in satin using the blue sponge applicator…
Applying sealer with the sponge is so easy, but I finally got smart a couple of weeks ago and cut the sides of the sponge off to give me a flat edge that fits perfectly at the top of the sides!
Stenciled Desk Makeover Reveal
Here is how this once ugly duckling desk looks now!
It doesn’t even resemble its former self!
As you can see, I also added hardware…
The white pulls are from Hobby Lobby and I found the glass pulls in a pack of six at TJ Maxx.
I centered the stencil to work with the glass knobs I used on the lower drawers.
It’s difficult to see the stencil on the top because of the light from the windows, but here’s a closer look:
I just added it along the back edge.
The center drawer got the stripe treatment for a little contrast which I did using FrogTape:
I like to tape off the sides of my drawers so there is a nice, clean line when you open the drawer. That wasn’t the case previously:
I was able to sand most of that off though for a cleaner look after…
The drawers looked all dried out from sanding those areas, so I hydrated them with a little Big Mama’s Butta:
This is Suzanne’s Garden which has a lovely, subtle rose scent, but it is available in four different scents, including an unscented version.
As for the insides of the drawers, I didn’t have any fabric that would work nicely with this desk, so I pulled out one of my Silk colors, Tide Pool:
It’s a beautiful soft sea green.
I really had fun with this one since it could only get better!
I hope you enjoyed it too!
Don’t forget to check out what my friends are sharing today as well!
And if you missed my last dresser makeover:
You can see what I did with it HERE!
That’s one more project crossed off the FREE-to-me Haul!
See any you missed so far at the links below:
Curbside Lamp Makeover with Wax
Longaberger Basket Makeover
How to “Fix ” a Broken Cane Chair
I’ll be back on Tuesday with a fun tray round up:
update: See all these trays brought to life here now!
Have a wonderful weekend!
Don’t Miss a Thing!
If you like what you see, there are several ways to follow along!
Mary Kaiser says
Wow it is not an ugly duckling now! Its is your attention to details that make you number 1, like how the knobs on the bottom 4 drawers go right in the center of your stencil! It is a beauty now, I just love it!
Aww you are the sweetest, Mary! Thank you so much! Can you tell I really enjoyed this one?? XOXO
This piece looks soooo pretty with that lace!
When I see old pieces like these, I’m always tempted to rub contrasting paint into those ridges. I never have done it, but I’m wondering if you ever have? I would love to see it if you have! TFS! 🌷
Thank you, Susan! I did on this sewing table and it turned out really pretty! : https://www.confessionsofaserialdiyer.com/how-to-turn-a-sewing-table-into-a-dressing-table/ XOXO
Janice Holt says
I knew the dresser would be beautiful when you got your hands on it. Love the stencil and the stripes. Lovely color also. have a great week-end.
Aww thank you so much, Janice! I really had fun with this one! Enjoy your weekend too! XOXO
Denise Cox says
It’s LOVELY!!!!! I love the stencil and color. Guess I love everything about it… 🤭. I do think I prefer the middle drawer without the stripes, but I know how YOU love your stripes… 😝… and that’s what counts!!!
Thank you so much, Denise! Yeah…I couldn’t decide if I wanted to leave that one plain or not and I decided I wanted a little contrast. This was a fun one to play with! XOXO
Maryellen Webber says
Wow! This desk is amazing! Love the stenciling!! Wonderful job Christy!
Thank you so much, Maryellen!! XOXO
jennifer george says
Love the patterns on the desk and color. Not only did you bring it back to life but gave this piece options.
Thank you so much, Jennifer! It could only go up ha ha! XOXO
Bridget Janes says
That is so crazy. I just did a desk and it’s almost the same. Wish I could upload a pic.
Oh funny! Feel free to email if you want to share: email@example.com. I’d love to see it! XOXO
Cheryl Atkinson says
Hi Christy! I think this is my favorite desk that you have redesigned. So pretty and a little Boho . Love it.
Aww yay! Thank you, Cheryl! It was so ugly that anything would have been better, so I had a little fun with it! XOXO
Denise Zdziennicki says
The lace stencil is gorgeous and I love the colors you picked. So feminine and sweet… just like you!💕 Pinned! XOXO
Aww you are so sweet!! Thank you, my friend!! XOXO
This turned out so beautifully! Does your neighbor ever want her stuff back after you have transformed it?
Thank you, Dana!! This is the first thing of hers I’ve redone so far, and she just might ha ha! XOXO
Much, much, much better! Love the stenciling and stripes. The hardware was needed too and I love what you added. Your ugly duckling turned into a beautiful swan!
Finally getting my cabinet door turned into a sign. Excited to try the clear wax on it when I’m done!
Thank you, Cecilia! I wasn’t super excited about this one, but I loved seeing it come to life! Have fun with your sign! XOXO
Rose Lefebvre says
Such a great stencil! I love the colors, too. If you were here in Oregon I would get it!
Thank you, Rose! I loved this stencil as soon as I saw it and couldn’t wait to try it on something! Wish we were closer! XOXO
Kathy Owen says
Gorgeous as always! I love the stencil.
Thank you so much, my friend! XOXO
What a BEAUTY.Love the color choice. The stencil is so pretty,but I hope in the future you will use the tea towel floral in a project. Such lovely work. I see the passion you have .Have a blessed day.
Aww thank you, Charleen!! I love all three stencils…that one will be next for sure! Enjoy your day also! XOXO
Carol S says
I love this, Christy! Very nice renovation from boring to woo-hoo! Good use of the stencils and stripes. I love Savannah Mist, too. Congratulations!
Thank you so much, Carol!! It certainly is woo-hoo now ha ha! XOXO
Wow! You’ve done it again! Beautiful!!
Aww thank you, Becky!! XOXO
Sharon L Austin says
Super! I love everything about this desk, the curves, the size, the new paint, just everything. It looks amazing!
Thank you so much, Sharon!! XOXO
You never fail to blow my mind! I love stencils too! This is beautiful!!!
Have a great weekend Christy!! 🙂
Aww I love that!! Thank you so much, my friend! Enjoy your weekend too! XOXO
Exquisite makeover! I bet your neighbor wants it back now!
Thank you so much, Deanna! She just might!! XOXO
Beautiful makeover Christy! Wonderful to get the piece for free, beautiful work, love the color and the stencils! I also love how you treated the sides of the drawers, the dovetail joinery really shines!!
Have a great rest of your week and weekend!
Thank you, Christina! Free is the best for sure! And yes, I couldn’t get that brown paint out of the dovetail joints, but it really highlights them so nicely! Enjoy your weekend too! XOXO
Roberta Menconi says
LOVE those stenciled drawers. My day doesn’t begin until I see a Christy makeover–now that I get one everyday. Love that too.
Oh yay!! I love that so much, Roberta! Thank you!! I’m so glad you’re enjoying the 30 days series!! XOXO
WOW! Christy – you always do great work but this is one of the prettiest – my new favorite.
Aww thank you so much, Sheila! XOXO
The new stencils are beautiful and those pulls add just the right touch. That color is lovely!
Thank you, Connie! Stencils are fun to play with!! XOXO
WOW! What a transformation! I love the color and patterns.
Thank you so much, Lizzy! XOXO
Debra Hubbs says
Wow just beautiful!! I have a question. I am working on a similar desk in Stormy Seas and Vintage Duck Egg, with the drawer fronts being blended. Have you ever seen or would you have an opinion on using a stencil like this over drawers blended with two colors? Not sure I’ve seen stencil used on a blend but after seeing this I want to stencil it lol.
Thank you, Debra! I think that could be beautiful if the blending is subtle, which it sounds like it would be with those two colors. I would try it on a drawer front, and if you don’t love the result, you can always sand it down and redo it. XOXO
Debra Hubbs says
Thank you. I will do that.
Karen Moore says
Absolutely gorgeous! You took it from rags to riches. Beautiful paint choice.
Thank you so much, Karen! XOXO
Jen @ Girl in the Garage says
What a beauty now! Who would’ve thought that plain desk could turn into this? Love the stenciling too! xo
Thank you so much, my friend! Stencils sure did work wonders on this one! XOXO
Michele M. says
That is an outstanding makeover! Love it – so beautiful, Christy! Whoot!
Thank you so much, Michele!! XOXO
Dixie Lee says
Magnificent! Really think this is great! Your stenciling is so well done.
I appreciate that, Dixie! Thank you so much! XOXO
It turned out really, really pretty!
Thank you, Robin!! XOXO
Love the colour and that pretty stencil. I’m doing a similar piece right now but without the middle drawer (went missing), in a duck egg blue colour. Desks/dressing tables are so versatile. Looking forward to seeing what you do with the bench 🙂 Have a great weekend! xo
Thank you, Petra! That empty drawer cubby is great for stashing a wireless keyboard when not in use! Happy weekend! XOXO
Wow!! What a transformation!!
Thank you so much, Olga! XOXO
Gloria Stage says
Love it. That desk sure came a long way from that ugly brown. Color is perfect. Love lace accents. Good job. Well done, Christy
Thank you, Gloria! Yes, this one could go only up ha ha! XOXO
Love what you do, so inspirational. And once we are out of boxes at our new home I have some pieces that revamping. Could you tell where you get the little rolling feet to move the large objects around.
We have new vinyl flooring and hard for us to pick furniture up at our “adult age”. Enjoy looking at all your projects. Keep up the good work. I have one more little school desk to finish for the great grans! thank you, vivian
Thank you so much, Vivian! I found those wheels here on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3ldpPgE They are fantastic for moving pieces and also for ease of moving pieces around while painting! XOXO