I see potential in things about to be discarded. For some reason I feel I must rescue them from their demise. And it’s not because I have tons of time or the skills to refurbish them. I just love a makeover and want them to be pretty before I send them off to a new life. So last spring when my sister sold her home of 25 years, I agreed to take the ugly dresser that had been living in her garage. It had become a tomb for used golf balls, old party favors and an odd assortment of those mysterious leftover parts from DIY furniture. She had acquired the dresser in high school and it had been protected by a thick coat of “hello yellow” paint along with “go go boot” white trim and wooden knobs. It was in remarkably good shape for an inexpensive piece of furniture from the hippie era.
But chalk paint has become all the rage and it just needed a coat of the latest fad lovingly applied to it. A rich taupe. With black stencils. Postal stencils. French postal stencils with script. Yes, that was the look I wanted.
It was simple to pick up the paint and coordinating wax locally. Pricey but worthy of this new painting experience. Some reasonably priced black paint from the hardware store was planned for the insides of the drawers. But the stencils? Much research on the internet finally proved fruitful when I discovered etsy. And there they were! Exactly what I wanted. Three large stencils. Each with its own very large price tag. For a brief moment I even considered cutting my own stencils to cut costs. However, when my husband reminded me that I’m known by name in the emergency room, I ruled that out. I do not have a good track record with sharp instruments.
With all my tools and supplies ready I cleaned the dresser, painted it inside and out, quickly applied the stencils, waxed it and installed nice new drawer pulls. It was now ready for a beautiful new life. Apparently a life with me. After an unusually successful yard sale, I still own it. Sigh. Perhaps the fact that I had pulled it barely three inches out of the garage might have made its availability questionable.
But those stencils. I still twitch when I think how much I paid for them. So I decided that they will find their way into all my artwork. I’ve stenciled them onto painted canvasses. Some of those canvasses have been made into purses. I decorated some clothing with them. And now I am currently accepting ideas on more ways to use them. Perhaps decorate my own postal receptacle with them. Anyone out there have ideas?