Thursday 14 January 2016

Quick and easy - sample pot makeovers

Christmas has been and gone, the decorations are down and everything looks bare and downright boring. Spring is just weeks away so I thought I’d do some brightening up in my little abode. When it comes to home makeovers we assume it’s going to take a lot of time and a lot of money, but this needn’t be the case. Picking just a couple of things to lighten and brighten can make a world of difference, and for small projects like these, all you need is one little sample pot of paint! 

1 hour Shabby chic stool makeover

I discovered this old stool sitting in the corner of my dads workshop, covered in grease. I immediately saw it had potential and offered to adopt it into a 'loving home.' It didn’t take long to make a deal with my dad who responded with a “OK you can have it if you cook me a nice dinner!” All it needed was a good clean and just one pot of sample paint. I used a sample pot of Laura Ashley's Dove Grey and I still had plenty left over! It looks white in the pic but's a actually a lovely shade of grey. This took an hour in total (minus drying time.) Scroll below for super simple step-by-step instructions.

Shabby chic stool makeover

Fireplace Makeover - in 30 minutes.

We never used to have a fireplace in this room, so my dad knocked it through for us, and we discovered an existing fireplace. My dad sourced some dark wood pieces for us and created a nice mantle surround, and I filled in the middle with some rustic style plastering. As you know our house is small, so I’m always looking for ways to create the illusion of more space, and painting the surround with a neutral eggshell farrow and ball paint in skimming stone, did just that.  Simply follow the instructions below for either project .... the same principle will also work on anything made of wood, so have a look around you and see what could do with a sample pot makeover. If you decide to take the challenge come and share your before and after pics with me on

You will need:

Sample pot of paint 
Fine / medium sandpaper or scraper
Clear wax or matt varnish

Step one: Preparation

Give item a good clean and allow to dry. Then give a quick rub down with some sandpaper and make sure it's dust free.

Step two: Painting & distressing

Give one coat of paint, and allow to dry. Once dry give a quick rub down with some fine sandpaper to smooth any lumps and lines, then give a second coat and repeat the process. Once dry, you can either leave it as it is or begin distressing. To distress you can either use fine/medium sandpaper, or a filler / wallpaper knife. Begin distressing the main edges and corners, as these are areas that would wear naturally.

Step three: Finishing off

Now you can either give it a final coat with some clear wax or clear matt varnish. For a rustic shabby chic finish personally I'd opt for wax. Apply your wax with a soft lint-free cloth. Rub it into the grain then once dry, give it a good buff.

Tada! x
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  1. Love these projects! Who would cover up such a lovely fireplace?! How lucky of you to find it. We're you surprised when you broke open the wall? What kind of wax do you use for finishing? I've never tried that on painted things. It gives a nice finish? Have a happy day! ♡

    1. We knew there was one behind the wall Karen as we could hear it was hollow, but we didn't know what state it was in and we didn't expect it to be so wide! I'll have to dig out the piccies of my dad knocking it though. Re the wax, it just gives it a very subtle protective coat, you can hardly see it which is why I like it :-)

  2. First time I've seen your blog, it lovely. I do so like the paint jobs you've done xx

    1. Ah thanks Patricia :-) glad you like them. Happy to have you aboard!

  3. The fireplace is beautiful. I have a cheap wood mantle surround from B&Q, painted white, been there for years and really want to replace it with something better. I have brass candlesticks on there my father-in-law got from the tip years ago, but your wall mounted candlestick holders look wonderful, very effective, never seen them before and will definitely try to get hold of some when I get around to re-doing the fireplace, which unfortunately means taking out the ancient back-boiler in there! An expensive job. Your room looks like Jane Austen could have lived there!

    1. Ah thank you Susan. The candlesticks I found at a charity shop. They were green initially (oxidised) and I cleaned them up ... as soon as I did I regretted it because I preferred the green! live and learn. Ah it can be a big job changing the fireplace. One thing at a time :-)