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Painting an Oak Bed (One Room Challenge: Spring 2015 Week 2)



Wow, I'm so happy this project is done! Welcome, I'm delighted you're choosing to spend a few minutes of your day with me! Grab a diet Coke or another cup of coffee and let's take a look at this bed transformation.

Today is Week 2 in the One Room Challenge at Calling it Home blog. If you're not familiar with this challenge, several bloggers are taking just 6 weeks to transform a room in their homes.  Last week I shared my Restful Guest Retreat Inspiration Board.  My goal is to create a space that is calm, restful and cozy for my guests to relax in. That means bright colors will be very minimally used; it's all about soothing neutrals.

Mr DIY and I bought this gorgeous Victorian Mansion bed as newlyweds (23 years ago).


All three of my children were nursed and cuddled in it. So when we upgraded to a king bed a few years ago, I was reluctant to just let this one go. I knew someday I'd have a guest room and this beautiful bed would be used once again!

Fast-forward to present day. Our oldest son has moved out of the house and gone off to University....and lo and behold, I finally have an empty bedroom to turn into a guest retreat. My sweet son gave the thumbs up for this project. He's excited about having a bigger bed to sleep in when he comes home.

My queen-size oak bed had a few issues that led to me paint it. First of all, honey-oak might have been really popular in the 80's and 90's, but it just feels dated now. Oh, and that shell embellishment had to go (gag me with a spoon!) Plus, the headboard had a 2-inch-long gouge that was noticeable and driving me crazy.

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify

I know that not all of you have jumped on the 'painted-furniture' boat. I do love natural wood and think it adds a lot of warmth to a space, but in some instances, painting a piece really is an improvement. This bed looks a whole lot better now that its makeover is complete.

I started by prying off the shell molding and repairing the split. I really liked the idea of adding some timeless wood accents so I found some at Lowes that I liked and added them to the bed using wood glue. The outdated shell was replaced with this charming cherub embellishment that I've had for some time (I think I bought it from a scrapbook store). It was the perfect fit!

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify

The bed got two coats of creamy white homemade chalk paint (needs no sanding or priming). If you're new to the whole chalk paint phenomenon, you can read my post on Chalk Paint 101 for beginners.

The bed was starting to look more French Country than outdated 90's, but the solid white was giving it a shabby chic vibe that wasn't the direction I was taking this room...

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify


 ...so I added an accent color...gray. I mixed the leftover creamy white paint with some gray, along with a squirt of black and some beige (I love mixing colors!). The walls in this room were recently painted Mindful Gray (it may be my favorite neutral ever....no pink, blue or green undertones) and I wanted the bed to be a slightly darker gray than the walls so it would stand out.

Before I got to this point, I had to carefully tape off those molding pieces and the edges of the panels. Frog Tape works wonderfully for this. If you burnish the edge of the tape with your fingernail, it produces a seal that prevents paint from seeping under.

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify

This step was a little time consuming, but so worth it. I ended up with crisp edges that didn't require any touch up. I love how the creamy molding pieces pop against the gray (which is looking a little blue in this picture...it's not, the lighting in this room is just terrible!).

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify

I painted this bed right in the guest room space. When it was time to distress, I really wished to avoid flying dust (I learned my lesson when I refinished our dining table in the kitchen and spent the next 6 months cleaning furniture dust!). So I wet-sanded it. All that means is running a sponge sander under water until it's wet, and then squeezing out the water. When you sand with a wet sponge, all that dust sticks to the sander and your room stays clean. I needed to rinse my sponge out periodically as it got dirty. Once the bed was distressed to my liking, it was time to wax.

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify

I love the warmth that dark wax adds. It gives furniture depth, ages it, and takes away that 'flat' look. I began by waxing a small section with clear wax, then immediately wiped dark wax over the clear. If you do this while the clear wax is still wet, you have more control over how dark you make it. If it's too dark, adding more clear wax will help to rub off the dark. Working on small sections at a time, I waxed the headboard and footboard. I went back over it with a soft cloth and buffed it to a delightful sheen.

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify

It turned out just as I'd envisioned but whew, painting a bed is definitely a lot of work! Especially when there's a foot board and side rails too!

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify

This week the plan is to purchase a mattress set, get the bed made and curtains hung. After that I'll be working on some other furniture pieces that I want to use in this room.

Fabulous painted bed makeover! I took my bed from Outdated 90's oak to gorgeous French Country! Get all the details at DIY beautify

What do you think? Are you ready to tackle your own bed and paint it? I'd love to hear what you think about my painted bed. Is it an improvement or would you have left it unpainted?

If you'd like the recipe that I use for my homemade chalk paint, just reply in the comments and I'll send it to you.

If you've been following along with my Farmhouse Modern Laundry Room makeover, I'll be posting the final reveal on Saturday and I'm so excited to show you how far we've come! You won't even recognize it as the same bland space, it is just oozing with charm!


UPDATE: you can read all about the Guest Room Makeover and see the final reveal right here: http://www.diybeautify.com/2015/05/guest-room-reveal-orc-week-6.html

If you want to see the Laundry Room Reveal, go here: http://www.diybeautify.com/2015/04/farmhouse-modern-laundry-room-reveal.html


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24 comments:

  1. It looks gorgeous! I have an oak bed too that I plan to paint at some point during our remodel process - I'm waiting for the wall behind the bed to be finished so I can decide how I want to paint the bed.

    I hope you'll come link up on Thursday evenings for my brand new feature - Farmhouse Fridays. Each week is a different theme. This week's theme is Farmhouse Tables!

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    1. Thanks so much Angie! I had no qualms about painting over that honey color...how could I have loved it so much way back when??

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  2. This is absolutely beautiful. I love what you did with the white and grey. Really makes this piece seem timeless. Coming from Feathered Nest.

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    1. Pam, your comments made my day! So many times I cringe when I see a painted piece because it's so trendy it looks like it will be out of date next month! I have painted some pieces just for fun, but tend to stick with simpler projects when I do that. I was definitely going for a classic, timeless look with my bed and am so happy to have achieved that!
      Appreciate your visit to DIY beautify :)

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  3. J'adore, il est magnifique. Le gris gustavien s'accorde à merveille avec le blanc. Il est nettement plus joli après car ces couleurs lui donne de la luminosité. Bonne journée. Véronique (France).

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    1. Translation: I love it, it 's beautiful. Gustavian gray goes beautifully with white. It is much prettier after because these colors gives the brightness. Have a great day. Véronique (France).

      Thank you so much Véronique, I'm so happy to have you!

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  4. Cindy, I love all of your ideas. You're so creative. Love the bed!!

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  5. This does not even look like the same bed!! It is absolutely stunning! XO

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    1. Thank you Christy, I am so excited with this transformation...isn't it amazing what paint can do?!

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  6. Hi Cindy, Your bed looks truly beautiful! Love the sweet cherub embellishment, it adds that French romantic country look, as well as the combination of the white with the pretty Gustavian Greay! I'm new to "painting furniture", checking out your Chalk Painting 101 post now! Looking forward to seeing your progress!

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    1. Thanks Christine, I'm so glad you're following along with my guest room makeover! My bed might be my favorite piece so far! I hope you enjoy reading my Chalk Paint 101 post; I'll be following up soon with another post dealing specifically with my experiences with various chalk paints!

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  7. Absolutely LOVE your bed makeover! Wow! .. great colors to choose too :) Visiting from the DIY Sunday Showcase :)

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    1. Thanks so much Wendi! The whole guest room is really coming together :)

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  8. Nicely done renovation of your old bed, chalk paint seems interesting since no sanding is needed for it. So given the guest room a relaxing, soothing vibe, pretty cool!!

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  9. Wow this is some transformation. I am ging to have to try it myself. I have never tried chalk paint on a large pice of furniture, but after seeing this I am going to jump in! Thanks for sharing.

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  10. This is just beautiful! I can't wait to see the whole room you're working on. Thanks for the great tips on working with the chalk paint and wax! Heading over to follow you on Pinterest...

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    1. Thank you so much Meredith! I'm glad you found the chalk paint tips helpful. You can read about the whole makeover here http://www.diybeautify.com/2015/05/guest-room-reveal-orc-week-6.html

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  11. Beautiful, beautiful bed! Such a great makeover!

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  12. Hi Cindy, I love this bed!! You did a fabulous job on the room. I also have a bed that I want to paint, of course it isn't as pretty as yours but it really needs an update. I haven't tackled a project like this before so it's taking me some time to get started. I'm trying to look at pictures and read as much as I can before I start so that maybe it won't be a disaster. I would like your recipe for the paint please if you would email it to me at awesome1676@gmail.com. Thanks so much Denise

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