Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Upcycled Chalkboard School Desk


Today is long over due!  I finished this project last summer... and was going to post it as soon as I was done with the rest of my plans for the wall behind where the desk sits and then I never did the wall... and then we ended up putting the Lego Storage System on the wall that was supposed to house the desk so my vision was all messed up BUT luckily, I still love this project and think it's a great upcycled idea!

I picked up this desk at our local Thrift shop on their discount day.  It was originally priced at $15 and then everything on the Patio was marked down to $10 and then I received 50% off since it was the discount so I ended up paying $5 for this fun, retro guy!

I knew I wanted to paint the top - it was damaged from use, had names carved (nothing bad, luckily) into it and was just kind of gross.  I grabbed some All-Purpose cleaner, a rag and went to work.  It helped, but I then grabbed my Magic Erased and gave it another good scrub before I was satisfied with it!  I also scrapped off countless balls of gum that were stuck to the chair and under the desk... High schoolers are nasty.

Before I could paint the top of my desk, I had to primer it.  The top of the desk is some sort of laminate and I knew my paint wouldn't stick to that surface so I grabbed my Zinsser Primer and went to work.

Don't be stingy, roll it on thick then let it dry according to the directions on the can.

After the first coat, I could see a lot of variation and imperfections, so I painted on another coat with a very heavy hand.

Once my final coat of primer was dry, I did a light sanding to get rid of any imperfections before painting my chalkboard paint on.

I used my Rustoleum Chalkboard Paint in Sapphire Blue.  I LOVE the color of this blue - it's vibrant and bright, perfect for a child's desk... the only thing I don't love about it is that you need to apply a good amount of coats.

Follow the instructions on the can for the dry time needed between coats.

See what I mean?  Ya, this was a few coats in...  I honestly did somewhere between 7-10 coats - I lost count half-way through.

But once it was done, it looked great!  This photo is a little dark because I added a "Schoolbook" filter, but the blue is really pretty.  And, of course, not only can you write on this sucker, but you're expected to write on it!  Just as long as it's been seasoned with chalk first!

I'm pretty sure Lil A was solving all the problems of the world when I took this photo...

I LOVE this desk - it's so fun and playful and, gasp - kinda retro!  How is it that the style of desks I used in Junior high and High school are now retro?  And remember that metal basket on the bottom where you were supposed to stash your books/supplies?  That could be my favorite part of this entire project!

I hope this inspires you to take a second look as an imperfect item that, with a little effort, could become something really cool!
Have a great day!

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