Sunday, July 10, 2016

Flea market transformations: message tray

Ready for transformation #2 this month! This one's a little more involved than the last one... we're taking this old barn wood hand made frame, and giving it new life as a friendly serving tray; a perfect centerpiece or gift for a generous host ;D

You know what we have to do! Let's take a look at the before. This frame was practically free... which is a good thing, because I had to purchase a few additional items for this transformation to be complete: Brass finish corner brackets, leather scraps, flat pins, chalkboard paint, creme wax, and a small piece of particle board. A few tools are necessary as well: power drill, screw driver, flat pin driver, and painting supplies.

To start with, I'll need to cut down the particle board to fit the frame. With that done, we can get painting! The particle board will get 3 coats (sanded in between) of chalk board paint. I love this stuff, and now have chalk boards in just about every room in my house! (My husband and I leave little notes for each other)
The frame itself needs a good cleaning with an old toothbrush to get into all those little grooves in the wood. Once dry, a coat of creme wax is applied with a stiff brush (again, to get into all the grooves).

With the wax dry (about an hour) it's time to add the leather straps and hardware. With the 2 straps measured and cut, I need to make the frame where the hardware will be added, and punch holes in the leather. Power tool time! With the drill, I drilled pilot holes where the hardware will be screwed in. This both makes it easy to add the screws, and prevents the wood from cracking!

With the leather and hardware secured, I flipped over the frame and inserted a few flat pins into the frame to secure the chalk board. This is a bit of a specialized tool, but if you find yourself doing a lot of framing, it's worth picking up. If not, heavy duty staples could also work...

The last step is to add a personalized message... this is a chalk board after all!Since I'll be placing mine on the table, I'm going to add a simple friendly "enjoy" in a handwritten script. With a piece of chalk, I'll lightly rough in the word for placement. I'll then get out the guache (which is basically liquid chalk) and a fine brush to paint in the final version. I say final, but this paint erases just like chalk... for a more permanent version, I suggest using acrylic paint. Throw a couple felt feet, or cork bits on the bottom to protect the table surface and voila! What do you think?

That's it; on to the next project! Want to know what it is? Follow me on twitter for sneak peeks and updates! If you're just looking for inspiration, stayed tuned @ for more on my projects through the summer! If you're looking to get some of the items you've seen here, on twitter, or on my boards, check out my etsy shop!

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