28 June, 2010

Show and tell

I was going to save this for Thursday's Creative Space, but I just can't keep it to myself.

It's my 'new' desk  - so that I don't have to keep moving my laptop and paperwork on and off the dinner table (I do have a perfectly good desk in our office - but it's too far away from little children).

Here's the before... (a handmedown from a friend, that was previously used as a child's desk) ...

And, wait for it ...................... here's the AFTER!

Before you ask, it's covered in fabric that I had in my stash. I had about 3 metres, and think I bought it in the first place simply because I loved the pattern.

I painted each surface with glue and cut and stretched the fabric onto it, added new knobs and a perspex top ($70 - now that was a surprise :( ) and stretched and stapled the red fabric onto the back to give the piece more weight.  It looks great next to the red rug in my 'grown ups corner'. And it was SO much quicker and easier than sanding, priming and painting!

My top tips for gluing fabric on furniture (can you tell I'm also loving Masterchef?) -

  1. Paint glue over the whole surface. I started with Aquadhere, then ran out, so finished with 'Weldbond'. I mixed both with a little water as I brushed it on to make sure the whole surface was covered.
  2. Cut enough fabric so you cover the whole piece, and then you can cover those rough edges with ribbon or some sort of trim. I've got a few bare bits hidden (but I'm not going to show you!).
  3. Use a patterned fabric (at least for your first go). This will disguise any unplanned or unavoidable lumps and bumps, which is bound to happen with an old piece of furniture.

I love LOVE LOVE it, and it's going to help me be more organised and pay the bills on time (instead of putting them on my office desk and never going in there again). And when my kids are bigger and I actually use my office properly again, it'll make a marvellous dressing table.

And here are some gratuitous 'try-hard-stylist' photos.

My gorgeous paintings are by the very talented Nic Hohn. I have a collection of "Hohn's" actually. Must blog about that one day. (Wouldn't it be nice with one of those 'navy' designer chairs...)

Yep. Love it. Thanks for coming.

PS. I forgot to mention that I was inspired by a completely upholstered chest of drawers I saw in a shop window in Paddington (Brisbane) last weekend - it was an impressive piece of furniture - with a $2995 price tag! Makes the perspex price seem quite reasonable...

(And sorry I haven't supplied the Black Forest Pikelet recipe yet - it's not yummy enough. I'll keep working on it.)


  1. What a great idea for using a beautiful print. It looks absolutely brilliant!

  2. Now that's a transformation! I wish I had another desk (and the room for one). Love the fabric, and the perspex top will totally be worth it, as I'm sure you know ;) Thanks for sharing :)

  3. Brilliant! I don't even have to say it. Get the chair, sista. One of those kids of yours should be old enough to work, surely?

  4. Pretty darn impressive! I've done something similar in the past using wallpaper paste with the fabric but your looks much nicer than the one I had done (now longer in our possession)

  5. lovely - it will make any bill-paying task just that little bit more palatable!

  6. OMGOSH ANNA! this is beautiful....I want to see it on Design Sponge! and not just'cos my paintings are on your wall....it is truly magnificent! Can't wait to see it (and you) in the flesh.

  7. that looks amazing Anna!
    wonderful makeover, that would definitely make you smile everytime you looked at it.

  8. Marissa9:56 pm

    Fantastic make over, Anna. I can see why you're so thrilled with the result!! Anything that makes mundane tasks, like bill paying, more inviting is a real treasure!

  9. i'm glad you love your desk so much- u made it so cute!

  10. oh wow, that is just amazing!! that desk is far to magical!!!!!! its the perfect size print, looks very kath kiddson!


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