Monday, 3 October 2011

The Coolest Kitchen Stools Ever!

Every now and again, I come across a project that makes me want to stop everything I'm doing and focus on nothing else until it's finished.

That happened to me this weekend. 

I was reading a blog I like, The Shabby Chic Cottage, and this was posted: updating kitchen stools. How amazing! We have four kitchen stools at our island and they definitely could use an update. 

This seemed like a sign that I was meant to do something with our kitchen stools - right now. And, since Gina said it was a quick and easy project, I decided to go for it.

Famous last words. 

Anyway, here are the stools sitting in the garage. They're a cherry colour that doesn't go with anything in our house, and they have lots of scratches and wear.

I didn't want to sand them and make a huge mess so I decided to prime them instead. So, with the help of my oldest son, we began spray painting:

After we put one coat of the primer on, I started spraying them black (my helper had long since left me by this point). And this is where the trouble started.

I ran out of black spray paint. I had thought one and a half cans would be more than enough, but apparently not. So, off to the store I went - and found out that the same brand of spray paint was out of stock. I wanted a satin finish but all they had was matte and gloss. To the next store I went, only to find that they didn't carry the same brand of spray paint. Grrrr. I bought three cans of black semi-gloss and came home to finish my 'quick and easy project.'

Apparently, different spray paints aren't necessarily compatible - the paint bubbled in some spots. Sigh. So after it dried, I sanded the paint and added another coat or two where it was needed. 

And, it was incredibly windy that day - working in the garage didn't make my day any easier. Huge seeds came from nowhere and landed in my wet paint. It looked like snow in the garage - that's how many seeds came under the half open door. Sigh. Again.

Once I got the bases painted, I started on the tops. After starting with a small foam brush, I realized the tops would need many, many coats to look good and be covered properly. So, I cheated and cracked open another can of spray paint - this one in a nice creamy white. 

I wrapped my drop cloth around the newly painted bases and in two coats, the seats were a wonderful creamy white - just what I was looking for.

The stools that Gina did had a graphic on the seat, which looks great, but it didn't have any personal meaning to me. We have four stools and four kids, so I decided to put their initials on each stool. I printed their initials as large as I could, and made them into home-made stencils by rubbing pencil on the back and tracing them:

It worked really well and I had an outline to follow.

Next, I used two Sharpie paint pens I picked up, traced the outline and coloured the letters in. The paint pens didn't work as well as I'd hoped, so I had to go over the letters again - and clean the black paint off my fingers and touch up the white paint where the paint pens had dripped. Sigh.

I worked my way through them - by this time, I'd moved them into the kitchen so I could hang out with the family. It was early evening by this point, so it was hard to see in the garage.

Finally, the stools were finished!

I added a couple of coats of poly-urethane to seal the tops - they'll be used a lot so I want them to last a while. 

They look great, if I do say so myself :) 

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