I hope you’re not bored yet with me talking about my flea market finds from August. I did warn you that my many finds would be the foundation for my fall projects. I even showed you a picture of this trunk, a wonderfully aged trunk who had the terrible misfortune of getting just a little too close to a termite colony.
Don’t worry he is NOT currently termite infested, all the little critters have moved on but they did manage to take a good portion of the trunk with them.
When my sister and I first saw this trunk, this is what we saw. It was marked $3.00, FIRM…as if we were going to try to talk him down from $3.00.
Was that some kind of mistake? Was it supposed to be $30.00? Was the decimal point in the wrong spot? And then we looked inside. OK, this could be a problem.
Undeterred, my sister made the purchase but I told her that I would love to tackle this project if she’d let me. He definitely needed a lot of love.
By the time she handed him off to me and I got him home, he was already fading fast.
He is sitting in a wheelbarrow because I was kind of scared to pick him up…what more is going to fall off?
A couple more boards had fallen off of the bottom from when I had first seen him at the flea market and I was beginning to wonder what I had seen in him.
Now I remembered, it was his beautiful chippy paint. At this point I had high hopes of saving some of the boards that make up the bottom trim.
Unfortunately, that was just not going to happen. Once I had pulled off the trim pieces, I could see the full extent of the damage.
I don’t know if you can see the bug holes underneath the trim board, but inside that board it is pretty much sawdust.
At this point I knew the entire bottom would have to go, from the trim board down. If you look closely at the picture above you’ll see I drew a cut line around the entire trunk.
Out came the saw. Sad to see so much of the trunk gone but look how pretty the edge is now.
Overall view of the inside of the trunk looking in from the nonexistent bottom. Just a little bit more of the termite damage shows on the left side, but overall, he is ready for his makeover.
I needed just a few supplies…a 2’x4′ piece of thin plywood, 2 deck spindles and some heavy duty construction adhesive.
I cut the plywood to fit inside the trunk up to the level where the old bottom had been. I then used the construction adhesive and a few nails to hold the plywood in place while it dried.
I cut the deck spindles the same height as the plywood. These also got a good coat of construction adhesive and a few long screws to attach them to the existing wood trunk.
I was originally going to use 2 pieces of wood…one to act at the original layer of the trunk and the other to be the trim…but once I saw how well the 2×4 fit, I couldn’t use anything else. It was perfect. Corners are nailed and glued. Screws attach the 2×4 to the spindles and construction adhesive to the plywood.
I cut a couple of pieces of pallet wood the width of the trunk and screwed them to the corner spindles.
The trunk is now turned over. Can you tell that the pieces of pallet wood form a ledge on the inside of the trunk?
To that newly formed ledge I cut pallet wood to fit and I cut small notches to go around the corner spindles.
With finishing nails and my nail gun, I attached the pallet wood to the bottom ledge.
Paintable caulk fills in all the gaps.
A coat of baby blue chalk paint followed by chalk paint wax finishes off the interior of the trunk.
Even though I had used an old 2×4 for the bottom trim and it had a bit of age it still needed a bit more age to match the original trunk.
This is vintage wax (brown), gray paint and just a couple drops of black paint.
That concoction was painted on and rubbed off with a rag. Dab on more color if needed.
Remember these feet? These were the feet that originally came with the feedbag ottoman I showed you last week. I thought they looked better with this project.
I painted the feet with white chalk paint, sanded off the edges then applied a vintage wax.
The feet were screwed on and the 2×4 trim was sanded to not only get rid of splinters but so the edges weren’t so pointy.
There was no way I could reproduce the chippy paint to look as natural as the original.
Instead I opted for layered paint hoping to get somewhere near the original color.
Start out with a thick layer of black chalk paint. This was really thick chalk paint, the sludgy stuff leftover at the bottom of a jar. If you don’t have bottom scrapings, allow the chalk paint to dry out a bit before using then spread with a putty knife.
The black was followed by some green acrylic paint.
Why green? Looking at my flaky paint, there appears to be a layer of green in the original painting.
The green was followed by another coat of thick light blue chalk paint. To get a thick consistency, I put some chalk paint in a bowl and let it sit out for an hour. Once again, I spread the chalk paint on with a putty knife so there wouldn’t be any brush strokes.
When the paint is dry, but it hasn’t quite hardened, scrape off some of the paint to reveal some of the layers of paint. I used a utility blade.
When the paint had a chance to dry overnight, I spread, a vintage wax over all my new paint layers.
All the original chippy paint on the sides got a coating of wood glue mixed with water…this was a tip from one of my favorite shows, Flea Market Flip.
Before calling this trunk done, I wanted to reinforce the corners just a bit more. I added a few more decking screws into the sides all the way into each of the corner spindles.
On the left you can see a couple of those screws. The screws had to be countersunk, filled with wood putty, painted with layers of paint then a coat of vintage wax. Screws gone!
Since I started with pictures of the bottom of the trunk, I wanted to finish with a picture of his underside…not a termite to be found!
Have a great week. Stay inspired.
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