On an ordinary day, I walked into my 3rd favorite happy place (beach, library; 1 & 2 respectively) and was doing my ordinary thing; slowly browsing every aisle of the Habitat for Humanity Restore. I was not there for any particular purpose but was feeling creative as I gazed at items hoping to spark inspiration for a furniture rehab. Kaboom! My attention was beaconed to a bench tucked neatly in a corner. As I further examined this diamond in the rough, the splattered paint stains, rough texture, and raw wood appealed to me greatly. I knew it would be a wonderful treasure to renew! As I drove away with it sticking ½ out my Toyota Prius C (c as in cargo), and despite the painstaking loading and transport, I felt giddy with the totalities of possibilities!
Once home, I parked the bench in the entry hallway and sat on it often to conjure up creative ideas to renew it. I decided to keep it as a bench and the following weekend, I was off again to the Habitat Restore to purchase paint brushes. I decided to enhance it with a soft cushion and paint makeover. I never attempted a project like this before. Having watched hundreds of YouTube videos on furniture rehab and makeovers, I knew this was not rocket science (or so I thought) and vowed to keep it simple. First, I had to work out a little logistics. Questions arose such as: Where would I paint to prevent spillage on my rented apartment floors? Did I need to buy an electric sander to sand down the wood’s surface? How much paint did I need? How much cushion did I need? And just how do I attach the cushion to the bench? As I researched my questions (GOOGLE to the rescue), I learned that paint and cushions (a.k.a. foam) exceeded my budget. I needed to find a cost-effective solution. As a thrifty DIY-er, I formulated a plan to use supplies I already had on hand.
I repurposed a camp pad for the bench’s cushion and attached it using a staple gun I use to make picture frames. I bought a $1 shower curtain from my local thrift store to cover the floors and purchased a small can of primer, sandpaper, and a small can of blue paint. I was now ready to begin!
The most surprising thing about this project was the labor! I built muscles sanding and lifting the bench for even distribution of paint. I learned how to measure through trial and error to get the cushion and material to cover it with minimum perfection. I learned patience as I waited 24 hours for each of the three coats of paint to dry. Ta-da! The project was a bumpy success! I acquired enough wisdom to energize my budding rehab creation. It was definitely worth the effort. Stay tuned for the next one!