Old Desk Flip: How to make a piece of junk a jewel again

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Confession: I am kind of a junk a-holic. OK, I am a total junk a-holic and I potentially have a problem (or according to my husband I do have problem!). :) I love old furniture and old stuff. I am always looking for the next yard sale or junk store anywhere I go. So imagine how happy I was when the little town I used to work in was having their annual town yard sale!

Small town + old stuff = happy me!

Old Desk Flip DIY refurbishing a $20 garage sale desk - Splendry

I came across this adorable old desk for $20!!! It was pretty beat up and had some large stains on it so it wasn’t a great option to sand down and re-stain. It was a great option to use with one of my new favorite paints. First thing first was to clean this piece up!

I started by taking out all the drawers and removing all the knobs by unscrewing them. I used Murphy’s Oil Soap (You can buy this at Home Depot/Walmart, etc.) and wiped down all the wood. It will eliminate most smells from the wood and really brings out a great shine. You want to make sure you really clean the pieces off and remove any debris (think spider webs, dead bugs, you know, fun stuff).

Old Desk Flip DIY - Murphy's Oil Soap used for cleaning wood - Splendry

Now the fun part…painting! Normally you are supposed to sand a wood piece down and then prime and paint it. It’s a lot of work and takes a long time. But, there is this little gem out there called Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.

Old Desk Flip DIY - refurbishing a desk with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint - Splendry

Let me now tell you how amazing this paint is. No need to sand or prime! :) She has many online videos and tutorials to show you exactly how to do it. The color I chose for this desk was French Linen. I did two coats on the desk and loved how the paint color turned out.

Old Desk Flip DIY - desk refurbish progress - Splendry

To seal Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (which for a desk you definitely want to do) you apply the clear wax and then to get a distressed look you use the dark wax. I could write an entire post on exactly how to do this but she has great instructions on her website. I chose to go very light with the distressed look because I was loving this grey color!  Once everything is dry it’s ready to use.

Old Desk Flip DIY - Refinished Desk - Splendry

I loved how this desk turned out! From something rough and ugly into something pretty!

Flipping an old desk into a gorgeous piece of furniture with no sanding or priming! We used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint to make this $20 desk like new!

 

Want more? Check out this trunk revival, you won’t believe what it looks like now!

How to bring life to an old trunk

Originally published March 11, 2016

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Amanda

Amanda

Amanda is a part time Physician Assistant but is a full time mom/wife with a daughter and a furbaby. She grew up in Tennessee and St. Louis but Oklahoma now feels like home. She is a lover of all things old and junk and loves to collect old items that she doesn't have room for. She enjoys traveling, watching and playing sports, and being with friends and family- so basically your typical extrovert!
Amanda

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12 Comments

  1. This is beautiful! We have the same desk and painted it. I like how the chalk paint looks too. I recently transformed a armoire and turned it into my craft area. Chalk paint is so easy to use. Thanks for sharing.

    • Not a stupid question! Before you put the wax on the paint kind of has a chalk board feel like a dry flat paint. After the wax it feels really smooth. Let me know if you have more questions!

  2. Jamie

    This is so cool! I’ve heard good things about Annie Sloan paint but now I’m definitely going to try it! (Anything that will keep me from having to sand furniture is worth checking out!)

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