White-Washed Stool and I Hired an Assistant!

Hi Friends!! I’ve got a quick little makeover for you today, and some fun news as well.

First up is the makeover. I picked up this little stool at the Goodwill a few weeks back:

It was in perfect condition, just not my favorite color.

I’ve shown you how I paint something distressed without the original paint color showing through, using petroleum jelly, in this recent post. For this little stool a different method was used so the red wouldn’t show through. First it got a couple of coats of Annie Sloan’s French Linen, then one coat of pure white. A little sanding and some clear wax and here it is now:

Distressed Painted Step Stool from Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

Not a trace of red!

Distressed Painted Step Stool from Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

I have a confession though…I didn’t paint this one.

My son, Jack did! Meet my new assistant:


He’s 13 and he loves to help me. He built my IKEA Rast for this IKEA Hack Challenge. He’s helped me transfer graphics to projects like this Headboard turned Cottage Inn Sign. And he had no problem getting his hands dirty when we were installing our hardwood floors.

But it never occurred to me to let him paint until I saw this amazing dresser my dear friend Larissa’s son painted. As soon as I suggested that he start painting a few things of his own to sell, he was so excited to get started.

He actually did a great job too.

Distressed Painted Step Stool from Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

I told him he can pick his pieces, transform them, and sell them in my booth, but they have to coordinate with what I sell. So I guided him here and there, but he did all the work. Now I would have painted those handles, but he chose not to and I think they look great!

Distressed Painted Step Stool from Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

They give it a little farmhouse feel.

Distressed Painted Step Stool from Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

Only adding one coat of the white over the French Linen allowed it to sand off easily to get that pretty distressed look.

Distressed Painted Step Stool from Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

Looks kinda cute here on my kitchen cart!

Distressed Painted Step Stool from Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

Hard at work on his second peice…


I’ve got me a thrifting buddy now too! 🙂

I’ll be back on Tuesday sharing how I updated this treasure:


UPDATE: See it in all it’s cottage charm HERE now!

Hope ya’ll have a fantastic weekend!!



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  1. Love the piece Christy and kudos to your son! How cool to be a team. You may have a budding entrepreneur on your hands!

  2. “Start ’em young!”…that’s what I say!!! There are child labor laws….ha!!!!
    Jack, “don’t let her stick you with the crappy jobs…You did a great job on that stool.”
    On Tuesday’s gem….OH!!! that amber bottle glass…..what a great invention that WAS!!!
    You’re keeping it right??????
    God Bless~
    Addie 🙂

    • Ha ha yes! I just can’t imagine him spending his whole Summer playing video games, so hopefully this will keep him busy. Those panels were amber bottle plastic lol, and you’ll have wait and see! 😉

  3. Mary Kaiser says

    Welcome to Jack!! I love how he did the stool, I think he has a good eye and an excellent teacher/role model to learn from!! Way to go Jack, looking forward to double the inspiration!!

  4. Barbara says

    Your new assistant is a cutie! Love your blog – when I turn on my computer, Iook for your blog first. You have such a talent – I completely enjoy everything you do & while I haven’t done much painting yet, the ideas are starting to flow & at 75 that’s pretty much a miracle.

  5. Lucky you with your new assistant!!!

  6. Your assistant did a great job!!!

  7. He did a great job! Love his smile 🙂

  8. Underneath the first pic you say, “I’ve shown you how I paint something distressed without the original paint color showing through…” Shouldn’t that actually be, “I’ve shown you how I paint something distressed WITH the original paint color showing through”?

    Or I might be totally wrong. :-\

    • Hi Heather! No I wrote what I intended to. The project I linked to in that sentence was my plate rack that started out green. I did not want that original green color to show through, but I still wanted a distressed look, and I showed how I got it without the green showing through beneath. It might have made more sense if you clicked through. 😉

  9. What a great way to connect with your son! He’s a cutie!!

  10. He did a great job and it looks so cute. What fun to have him working along with you. 🙂

  11. Gina Keysor says

    Excellent training for the “ideal” husband!! Lol. What a practical way to teach about earning money as well as being handy. I love doing projects with my daughter too( she’s grown up now). Not many kids want to hang out with “mom”. Nice to see.Great job Jack.

    • Yes exactly ha ha! His future wife will thank me. I do love that this will teach him about earning money too, and I know he won’t always want to hang out with me, but I’m enjoying every minute while it lasts. 🙂

  12. chris aka monkey says

    how nice that he wants to help and how nice that you let him xx

  13. Awwe… He’s adorable and crafty! I think you should keep your new assistant around for awhile ;-). Tell him he did an outstanding job! You gave me a push to get my 9 yr old involved!

  14. You have the cutest assistant ever! It is wonderful that he is learning skills now that he can use his entire life. Last year I had a 6th grader who needed to keep busy and I’d bring in small projects for him to do while class was going on. He listened and was learning but kept his hands busy which kept him out of trouble and he loved helping me.

    I know this will sell and I’ll bet that Jack will love getting his paycheck.

    • Thanks, Paula! I think so too lol! I love seeing him so excited about it…just hope he doesn’t lose that enthusiasm! What a great idea for helping your student focus. 🙂

  15. Jack is a wonderful assistant. I love how the stool turned out and the addition of the handles is genius.

  16. What a total cutie he is! Christy you’re raising some womans dream man, and I hope in the way way future she realizes just how blessed she is to have him! The bench came out great! I think you should give him a piece and let him do it from beginning to end, and you can be his assistant. Let him pick the colors, the design changes and then let us see too! 😀 Have a very Happy Mother’s Day, let your family spoil you!

    • Thanks, Amy! I’m trying to teach him the basics, but I am certainly looking forward to letting him go it on his own! He ahs good ideas already. Thank you for the Mother’s Day wishes! XOXO

  17. Jack has the prettiest eyes. Such a cute boy! Plus..he did a super job on that bench!
    Looking forward to seeing your hutch transformation! My ugly duckling hutch is sitting in the garage waiting to transform into a beautiful swan. ????

    • Thank you, Angelia! He is a little sweetheart too. He has really enjoyed reading the positive comments…a great motivator! I just put the finishing touches on my hutch today… now if it will stop raining so I can take some nice bright pictures! 🙂

  18. What a fabulous assistant!! And such a handsome boy you have there Christy!

  19. That is great that you are teaching a young boy how to paint and redo things, wish all young people could be like and have an opportunity to learn painting ways. The stool looks great and I love the handles black. Good job

    • I love that he is excited about it too, Jeri! He surprised me! I got your email today, but my response was returned, but just wanted to let you know that you can leave the blog url space blank. Your comment came through no problem, but I have them set up so I have to approve them first before they show on the blog. That way I don’t miss any! 🙂

  20. I much prefer the dark handles. Great job!

  21. Cindy Pierce says

    You got yourself a good looking assistant! He did a fantastic job!

  22. How wonderful – you not only have an assistant, but he’s enjoying himself, too! He’s learning how hard work pays off, and it will build up his self-esteem…..although, your kids already probably have good images of themselves just by living with loving parents!! It looks like such fun working with your young teen…SO important these days!!!!!

    • I am really excited about having him work along side me this Summer! I know the time will come all too quickly when he won’t want to hang out with me, so I’m going to enjoy every minute! XO

  23. Oh, that smile! The stool is cute, but Jack is cuter!!

  24. I’ll take that sharp, talented assistant your so lucky to have any day!!! He’ll do great because I bet he’s a chip off his talented Moms block.

  25. How precious! What a blessing that you get to work so closely with Jack! I’m sure he has watched you closely and has seen the gratification you get out of creating all those wonderful pieces! But he “gets it”! Not everyone does! And now he wants to create his own pieces! That’s so awesome!

  26. Aww, that’s so great that you’ve got an assistant! It’s always so fun when our kids want to follow in our footsteps. Treasure it while you can… soon he’ll be into girls and nothing else will matter! lol!


  27. Maryjean says

    Oh what a cute stool! I agree with your son, I like the handles unpainted. I’m surprised someone got rid of that stool. All it needed was a new coat of paint! Great job Jack! And he’s a cutie too!

  28. You can’t beat a young, energetic, live-in assistant who does beautiful work. A+ on his first makeover piece!

  29. Jack…you nailed it!! Technique and all. High five, man! 😀

  30. WOW, totally agree w/all the above positive comments. Jack should be very proud of his work as we all are for him….and GO YOU CHRISTY, what a great mom. I promise you will treasure the memories. Son’s are esp. great at his age. He’s a natural like you. Wishing you both fun, smiles and laughter together. Oh, and great sales too.

  31. Awww what a sweet assistant!!! Best ever.
    Love your little stool and your photos are great! 🙂