As I mentioned, our holiday party was a good excuse to make good on so many projects I've had sitting on the shelves of my brain for ages. I've been wanting to give this credenza (or buffet? Not sure what you would call it) a makeover, but knew I didn't want to paint it. I've painted several pieces of vintage furniture in our home (a few just recently that I'll be sharing), but I didn't want to paint this one in particular because the wood was too nice and in such good condition.
I know there's always a lot of debate on whether you should or shouldn't paint vintage furntire, but I say - Do what makes you happy! For me personally, it depends on the piece. For the most part, I prefer to paint because I don't particularly love the color brown... at all. And with our rooms being on the small side, darker furniture tends to make me feel closed-in, so I'll often opt for bright or light paint colors to visually give my eyes a rest. Bright colored furniture, along with recently painting most of our walls white, has helped tremendously in brightening our dark home - and also brightening our spirits!
I hemmed and hawed over how to brighten this piece through temporary means that could be changed later on without harming the finish. That ruled out wallpapering it because the glue would ruin it. Then I thought about contact paper since it's removable, but there aren't a lot of color choices when it comes to that. I think I brainstormed and googled for days and it finally dawned on me: why not vinyl? Like the stuff they make vinyl cling decals from?
So I started searching on Amazon and Ebay and found this shop that sells cutting vinyl by the roll for super reasonable prices and in GREAT colors! I wanted very bright, saturated colors and was especially keen on adding a neon in there. They carry rolls in different lengths. The whole project was very affordable. I just measured all the areas I wanted to cover and ordered accordingly.
It came out better than I could have ever hoped. Sometimes you have ideas and they end up not working out and become a nightmare. This one worked out so well, and with a little patience, was very easy to apply. I chose to cover the drawers and the doors (of which made it easy for me because they came with these inlaid areas that were primed and ready for a little pop of color).
The key is to measure very carefully. I used a craft knife, metal ruler and self-healing mat to do all of my cutting. I made sure the surface of the drawers and doors were clean and luckily they were already nice and smooth. Applying the vinyl was on the whole, very easy. I used a credit card to smooth out the bubbles. The larger the piece, the harder it can be to smooth out, but with patience it can be done. What I love most about the vinyl is that most of it has a gloss finish which gives a look of very shiny laquer paint (one of the colors I ordered ended up having a matte finish, but doesn't stick out luckily). I love the look of laquer or enamel paint, but it's so expensive! And permanent of course.
I knew I wanted to do a gradation of color on the drawers (not thinking ombre, but I guess you would say it's an ombre effect), all in pink hues. The top color is actually quite neon, which is hard to capture in photos. It looks awesome in person. It's a warm neon, not garish. And it doesn't glow in the dark thank goodness (I asked, ha!). The vinyl is opaque which is a must as well. You don't want the brown of the wood showing through. The knobs are the original hardware that came with the piece. I love them so! The brown and white floral/plaid on top is just a cut of vinyl fabric I use to protect the top. We served food on top at the party so it was a good thing.
So far it's been very durable. It's nice to know that if I ever want to change up the look of our home and I'm over pink, I can just pull the vinyl off without harming the wood. But honestly? I'm so in love with these colors! And the pink doesn't seem to bother all three of my boys. I think they gave into "Mommy's stuff" a long time ago. ; )
The wallpapered wall is also one of those projects I've been scheming for an eternity, but never followed through with. I love yellow and pink together so I knew I had to go with yellow for the paper. And yellow is kind of a neutral color and would tone down the pink a little. I've also hemmed and hawed over wallpaper for years, and I finally came to the conclusion that on big projects like walls - I just CAN'T do traditional wallpapering methods of pasting and cutting, etc. The idea of it and the stress I immediately feel when thinking about it made it obvious to me that I should not go there. And do you know how hard it is to find someone to pay to do it for you? Hard. And expensive. So, when I stumbled onto Chasing Paper a year or so ago, I knew that self-adhesive temporary wallpaper panels was the way to go - for me.
And let me tell you - these panels (2 feet by 4 feet) are AWESOME. It's definitely a job doing an entire wall. It's kind of exhausting, but it's definitely not hard. I can't even imagine doing it the old school way after using these panels. The hardest part is just getting everything to line up correctly, but even that isn't too bad. Fortunately, the paper has a slight bit of stretch, so if you need to MAKE something line up, or you flub up here or there, you can usually stretch it a bit to MAKE it work.
The texture and quality of the paper is really nice, too. Be warned through, there are more seams since you're using precut panels instead of full rolls, but that said? TOTALLY WORTH IT. You're going to have seams anyway, and not having to do a lot of cutting is worth it, in my opinion. And the seams dissapper anyway. They don't stand out. And again, it's temporary! So if we move, or my tastes turn fickle, I can take it down without harming the walls, unlike normal wallpaper.
You might be thinking? Did they pay her to say all these things? Did they give her free wallpaper? No. (aka, I wish.) Just my opinion that I thought I'd share with you. And speaking of paying... wallpaper isn't cheap. I'll be honest, and neither is this paper - but it's not outrageous. And I asked for custom colors which made it slightly more expensive. Luckily, I have an awesome mother who obliged my request for one wall of wallpaper for my Christmas/Birthday present. (Thanks Mom!!)
If you do try out some custom colors in any of Chasing Paper's patterns, be warned, that you'll need access to Pantone Color chip books. Since I'm a designer, I was lucky and had these on hand, but they do require actual pantone colors to do custom colors for you. And you of course need to see the colors in person so that you know what you're really getting. Note: she told me that they print CMYK, so make sure you're looking at the CMYK chips and not the spot-color chips because there is a definite difference in look. You can't do custom designs though at this time. I used this design.
Speaking of surfaces, this little white closet door below will have a new wall-hanging soon. I have a DIY in the works that I hope to share by Friday. You might even have time to make one of your own before Christmas day!
If you decide to try cutting vinyl to give one of your own pieces of furniture a makeover, please share a link to your project in comments below! I'd love to see! And practice good internet manners, please be kind and link back to my post of you do. It's always appreciated!