Back when I talked about our plans for Ari’s room, I mentioned how much I loved this two toned dresser at Simply Klassic Home:
(Someone really needs to Truman Show-ify the internet for me so that every week a new “challenge” shows up that just happens to be about something I’ve been meaning to get done: “Oh, look, what a coincidence! It’s the ‘move a couch out of your garage and into the sunroom’ challenge!”)
(I am worried that Kristin is going to think I’m completely copying her whole (fabulous) room, because there’s also a plank headboard in there. But, while it is worthy of copying, I would like to state for the record that I posted my plans for a plank headboard or wall for Ari’s room a whole day before it appeared on Simply Klassic. But that dresser? yeah, totally copying. Because it’s awesome).
I have a different plan for Ari’s dresser, so I decided to give the two tone treatment to his desk instead. Here’s what his desk looked like before:
More of the orange-y maple, like his bedside table
. First we wanted to take the mirror off. It had more of those scalloped edges interfering with our modern aesthetic, and we have better things to do with the walls. Dave remembered trying to take it off at some point in the past (maybe when we moved?) and having a terrible time and giving up. But he went into Ari’s room ready to do battle with the mirror and came out 15 minutes later looking very confused. “It was just held on with regular screws,” he said, “I have no idea why we had trouble before.” Don’t question it; just be glad!
We took all the drawers down to the basement to sand them down. The finish came off super easily. Even a child could do it! No, seriously–our kids did it:
Then I painted the rest of the desk with the same Valspar High Speed Steel (mixed with some plaster of paris to chalk paintify it) that we used on the bedside table. Two coats of paint, then I distressed it (this is the point where I realized that the sanding sponge I bought to do the bedside table was complete crap (or, at least, inappropriate for distressing). I got tired of it, found a piece of sandpaper, and things were much better).Then a coat of polyurethane.
For the stain, I mixed together the dark walnut we already had with some weathered gray. I brushed it on each drawer then immediately wiped it off with an old t-shirt. After they dried overnight, I screwed the rest of the “hydrant” knobs from Hobby Lobby in and put them back in the desk.
Then I took pictures three separate times over the course of the day, trying to get perfect lighting, because I felt like the desk was So.Much.Prettier. in real life than it was turning out in the pictures. But I think, with the help of the late afternoon sun through the west facing windows, I finally got a pretty good representation (it’s those dark walls again! If I just painted every room white, I’d have much better pictures, I think). I’m really pleased with how it turned out, and Ari loves it, too. He’s getting pretty into the room redecorating, which makes me happy. Especially since he likes most of my ideas.
I was so proud I even dragged stuff from other parts of the house to style it all fancy-like:
Mostly only the globe was from other parts of the house. This stuff was already in the room. In fact, we found the pencil holder at the dollar tree the other day. The Eiffel Tower and little viking are both from Epcot.
I moved one of the Tabouret chairs from Overstock in there. These were originally supposed to go with our farmhouse kitchen table. But, uhh, we still haven’t made that table. So the chairs have just been knocking around the house, and now I’m thinking I might want to go in a different direction for kitchen chairs (if our table ever actually exists). Ari asked if he could have another one (there are 4 of them) for when he has a friend over, so we’ll probably put another one up there. And then maybe paint them? Red? Silver? I’m not sure. Thoughts?
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