The weather here has been absolutely beautiful for the past week or so with bright sunny days and low humidity which is perfect weather for painting. Leo and I cleaned out and reorganized our storage building, and I found two small pieces of furniture that I'd almost forgotten were in there. So I decided to redo one of them by painting it red.
We had purchased this cabinet for next to nothing at the auction that we attend regularly. The auctioneer called it a music cabinet, and its shelves are about the right size for holding albums (remember those?) or sheet music. I tried googling music cabinets, but I never saw another one like it. So perhaps it's just a pretty little bookcase. Either way, I planned to put it in our den to hold.......MAGAZINES!
Yes, magazines! I subscribe to a number of them and love them dearly. Even though I go through them from time to time to discard them, they tend to pile up. Especially since I hang onto my favorites for about a year before I can bring myself to dispose of them. And since our home is small, every thing needs it own dedicated space. So I decided to turn this music cabinet/bookcase into a magazine rack. The original finish on the cabinet was worn and parts of it were veneer so I decided to paint it.
I mixed up some of my own homemade paint that has a chalky finish by using latex paint with Plaster of Paris. The reason I do this is because you don't need to remove the original stained finish before painting. The color that I used was Emperor's Red by Valspar and I mixed 2 parts paint with 1 part Plaster of Paris mixed with a little water. It's hard to give you an exact recipe but this is how I do it. I use a quart sized plastic container and pour about ½ cup Plaster of Paris in the bottom. Then I slowly add about ⅓ cup of warm water and mix thoroughly. If the plaster mixture seems thick, I'll keep adding a little more water until I have a nice mixture that is not too watery. Then I pour in about a 1 ½ cups of paint and stir A LOT until it's all blended together. I do need to tell you that the plaster tends to lighten your paint color so keep that in mind when you are choosing your paint color. After two coats of the chalky paint on the cabinet, I decided to deepen the color by pouring in a darker shade of red paint and applying another coat.
I did not paint the shelves inside the cabinet because I like a little contrast (and it's easier and quicker) to do it that way. After the paint had dried thoroughly, I waxed it with a layer of Annie Sloan's clear wax and then added some dark wax. The dark wax seeps into the crevices, adds definition to the piece, and deepens the color. I just love the finish that the deep wax gives to a painted piece! I let the waxes dry overnight and then I buffed it the next day with a clean, dry cloth.
Here it it all ready to move into the house. I'm just always amazed at how paint can totally transform a piece of furniture. Leo grabbed the camera and snapped this pic of me with the little red cabinet.
I placed the cabinet next to the sofa where I previously had a basket where I stashed my magazines. I started loading it up with books and magazines (I had to peruse a few of them while I was doing that) and left it that way for a few days.
Until I got around to doing a little better styling of the shelves. The one thing that bothers me is that magazines are different sizes. Does that bother you? Consequently, they don't stack neatly. Really wish they were all a consistent size but I understand that some magazines increase the size to "stand out in the crowd."
The newly painted cabinet is also the perfect place for the ivy, but Leo says it won't be there for long. Shortly it will have some Christmas decoration on top.
You can see how the red makes this little area pop and blends with the other colors used in the room.
The magazines all have a new home and are much more accessible than when they were
stored jammed into a basket.
I think even Henry approves of the little cabinet redo!
Love the red cabinet! It's a nice size cabinet for any room. Saw a smaller version at a antique -flea market . Wish I had bought it to store my vintage quilts in.Henry is a handsome cat.
Love the color and can't wait to try the recipe but is the ratio 2:1 or 3:1? Or are you counting the water in the ratio? I'm just asking because the last time I tried to use Plaster of Paris, I ended up with a lumpy mess that harden into a thick unusable paste. Maybe I didn't use enough water?
Lyn, try this. First, put 1/2 cup hot water in a container. Then add 1/2 cup of Plaster of Paris to the hot water. Stir until all lumps are dissolved. Then pour in 1 1/2 cups of paint and stir. If the paint is too thick, you can always add more water.
What a pretty piece Jane...love it painted red! It looks so pretty in that spot!
The cabinet is beautiful! I like that you left the inside brown. It goes so well with your room. I can't wait to show it to my husband. We just came upon a treasure and are trying to figure out what we are going to do with it. He just may want to paint it when he sees this. Oh, I found you on Pinterest.
It looks beautiful! So does the Plaster of Paris act like a PRIMER??? You don;t have to sand with that kind of mixture, is that right?? Is that similar to "milk paint" that someone else mentioned??? I have a chest I want to try this on.
I love this cute little cabinet. I bought a china cabinet at a sale and am debating between red or a toned down turquoise to repaint it with. I love your choice of red for this cabinet.
What a delightful redo! I'll have to try your paint recipe. Which type of Valspar - there are several. The dark wax does pretty things, too. Re: magazine sizes? Try putting all of the like ones together, then stacking. That'll add a wee bit of order to them, huh?
what a nice cabinet - love the color you chose! and it looks lovely where you have it!
Jane, the cabinet looks beautiful! Love the color!
Jane, I love that cabinet and red is so perfect for it. Your ivy is beautiful.
Moni ~ Zu Haus at Home
What a wonderful addition to your room....love the color!
Susan in SC
Very pretty Jane! You did a great job.
Andrea at Opulent Cottage
Such a darling piece! The curves really pop with the red paint! Lovin that sweet kitty too 🙂
Sonya ~At Home with The Barkers
I love this!! Love that you left the inside stained...gorgeous! ~Sonya
Leslie @ House on the Way
Ok…this is destiny! About 30 minutes ago, I began working on an armoire that I'm wanting to paint red. Then I see your beautiful piece and I'm more convinced than ever to go for it! Red is my favorite color anyways…meant to be! Thanks for the inspiration! Love your cabinet!
The newly painted magazine piece is perfect with your decor. I am sure it is nice to have some additional storage. Living in a smaller place myself storage is always challenge. Great job. Looking forward to seeing all of you during the holidays. Jean
Pat @ LifeAtLydiasHouse
I love it! I have an antique music cabinet that my mother gave me that I redid this past summer and put on our screened porch and my mom just told me that she found a similar radio cabinet, almost identical to yours without the shelves, while cleaning out her basement. What a great idea to use it for magazines! I have stacks and stacks waiting to be read! Yours would be perfect in my house since red is my accent color in the den! And, I love that sweetgrass basket too!! Great transformation!
Susan (Between Naps on the Porch)
Jane, I love the color you mixed for your cabinet makeover! The pics with ivy hanging down are so pretty against the beautiful red. Henry is sooo cute! 🙂 Happy Sunday to you and Leo!
It's adorable, and you have the perfect spot for it! Sweet treasure!
Jane, I LOVE your little cabinet redo in red! The color is beautiful in your room, I can relate to needed storage for magazines until you're ready to part with them. You're so photogenic too 🙂
Denise at Forest Manor
LOVE your music cabinet, Jane! You did a great job painting it, and it's perfect for storing magazines (and books). We have lots of magazines here, too, and I have them stored in different ways in each room. Your cabinet is a real winner. 🙂
Have a great weekend.
SheilaG @ Plum Doodles
Your little cabinet is lovely- it's the perfect color with your pillows. Smart lady not to paint those shelves- it's a bear to do!
I love that! Perfect for magazines and I love the red. Just a nice pop. It never ceases to amaze me the complete difference paint can make.
I absolutely LOVE the red cabinet! I wish it were mine! Thanks for sharing. Ü
[email protected] Designs
What a wonderful surprise it must have been when you were cleaning out your storage building…that piece is gorgeous painted red…fits perfectly in the room and you are right…it took on a totally different appearance painted red…you did a wonderful job painting it and styling the bookcase…and love the pic of you!!! Have a wonderful weekend Jane and Leo!
Okay, that's a music cabinet, to my reckoning. My grandmother had one just like it at her farm. I think you put it to a marvelous use, I always have trouble stashing MY magazines, too. It looks great!
Kathy, Petticoat Junktion
Be still my heart. YOu know how I love radio cabinets Jane! That is a wonderful photo of you. You did a great job on the cabinet. I love red. 🙂
Love it! It's beautiful. I'm definitely going to try mixing my own chalk paint because it get quite expensive! Thanks for sharing!!
Thanks for sharing - I love the idea of mixing plaster of paris with paint. Am looking around to see what I could try this on in my home.
Lovely! Good job! I've never heard of mixing plaster of paris with paint -- what a great idea. Thank you for sharing this tip.
I love the cabinet redo. I want to go with you to the auction sometime, please! I need a cabinet for all of my magazines. I promise not to bid against you!
Great redo Jane it loos great beside the sofa. It's the perfect color to bring out the pillows on the sofa. I can't believe you are wearing flip flops they are calling for snow here tonight.
Oh, how pretty! I just love how your little cabinet looks. The color is gorgeous and I love how you've dressed her up too.
Be a sweetie,
Elwy Lee Henry
Jane, I love your cabinet, it turned out beautiful.. I have a cabinet I need to redo and this really excites me. Thanks for posting.. Hugs...
Jane, that turned out so pretty, and it is perfect for magazines. I believe it was original for storing sheet music. That red color is perfect, and Henry is a pretty baby. laurie
Laurie @ Vin'yet Etc.
Wow!!! I love that cabinet! I always organize my magazines by size, drives me crazy too! I'm going to have to bug you now for that paint recipe! The latex you use, is that flat or eggshell finish?
Fantastic transformation ! It looks wonderful in your home ! I love chalk paint ( especially the homemade kind 🙂
janet Magina formerly Housepeepers
I love it, I love anything red (which is my accent color throughout my home) and I too have stacks of magazines. Sadly some of my mags are more than 20 years old 🙂 Can't stand to get rid of some of them!
danielle @2 Little Superheroes
This cabinet is adorable! I have some red milk paint but have to use it on anything. I think I'm afraid! But you've convince me to give it a chance.