Friday, September 16, 2011

Dancing on White

I've been hiding something from you.

I don't think I ever shared the incredibly ugly "desk" in my kitchen with you.


Probably for good reason.

Take a look at it....
but don't linger too long.

It's reeeeally ugly.

Lovely boring, beige, swirly patterned, 1980's laminate.

Yeah, I know.  I know.
That television is now considered an antique, I'm sure....
We want to buy one of those under-the-shelf type ~
 It's just not top priority right now, unfortunately. 

See that ugly, bumpy tile on the wall?
It's the same thing that's on our counters.
We hate it.
It was tan when we moved here.
I painted it white immediately.
It will be replaced....someday...
with white bead board backsplash
and a soapstone-type counter.

Anyway, in an attempt to "pretty up" that desk space,
I made an under-the-counter skirt from leftover drop cloth fabric.
I didn't even pull out a sewing machine.
I don't have one.

I used that seam binding heat tape stuff to create the rod pocket,
slipped in a tension rod
and ta-da!
Instant French country!

(Just one more way to bring more white into the kitchen
without painting the cabinets.)

I had originally considered painting that laminate top with
Annie Sloan chalk paint.
In fact, I checked with a distributor who said it would work 
if I put three or four coats of poly on top for protection.

But while whitewashing my wicker baskets recently,
I had an "ah-ha" moment.

After some scrounging around in our barn for a while,
sorting through all the scrap, trim, and barn wood, 
I hauled out a 2"x28' board.

(Should have seen me maneuver THAT monster down the loft stairs...
Pulled a muscle in my shoulder doing it....
but by George...
I did it myself!)

It had a lovely, weathered gray patina.

I hoisted it over my shoulder, made like a lumberjack, 
and walked into hubby's tool room in the garage.

He looked up from what he was doing,
and I was met with the usual 


and the ever infamous


After I explained the vision bouncing around in my head,
he actually agreed 
it would be a great idea
 went to work on my vision immediately!

Will wonders never cease....???

Out came the measuring tape, pencil, square, and saw.

Hubby: "Do NOT do that happy dance right now!
    I'm trying to cut this straight!!!"

Me: (bouncing up and down) "Okay!  Okaaaayyy!!! 
But this is going to look soooo gooooood!"

Hubby:  "Stop your dancing!!!!"

Me:  "Not even a liiiiitle.....??"

Hubby:  (now bellowing) "NO!"

Me:  (mumbling)....."Party pooper....."

When he threw me the hairy eyeball
I knew I needed to stand still.

We cut and we he wood glued.

We used some cool vintage wooden clamps to hold the boards together while they dried overnight.

See that jaw dropping gray patina...?

The following day
I hauled that beautiful but h-e-a-v-y future desk top to the backyard
for a wash.

A whitewash.

I used the same technique that I did on my wicker baskets.

Watered down a little Annie Sloan "Old White" chalk paint,
and had a bucket of water and a clean brush ready.

I worked in sections.
Paint - then water,
letting the milky white watered down paint run down the boards, 
catching in the crevices and knot holes.

I gave it two coats of whitewash.


After a couple hours drying time, I used my little palm sander to distress it.

I lugged it inside to the kitchen
(another monumental task)
and laid in on top of the bottom cabinets.
I painted on light coat of AS clear wax,
let it dry for a couple hours,
then buffed and buffed and buffed.


I couldn't wait to show hubby.

When he walked in the door that evening,
I could have sworn that I saw a weeee bit of happy dance touch his toes
as he said,

"Ya know.....THAT was the best idea you've come up with yet!"

We both stood there smiling stupidly

and petted the table for a while ~

oohhing and aahhing.

We loved it.

It was a good thing.

Hubby:  "You can happy dance on your table now....."

Me:  "I am....."

{ Hugs }

PS  Please keep sweet Anne in your prayers.
Her momma passed away this week.
She is hurting..

Linking this week to the parties on the lower right of my sidebar.
Just click on the buttons and join the fun!


  1. I like the skirt idea very much. Laurie, you are so talented, you make everything look so easy! Nice pedicure, btw. :) xo

  2. Laurie this is fantastic!! I absolutely love what you did with your countertop and that gray weathered board!! Fab-u-lous!!

  3. I think it's a great idea. Looks wonderful..

  4. So much better Laurie. The skirt was a great idea, and the top looks great.

  5. What a great idea and it looks wonderful!!
    Suzann ~xoxo~

  6. It looks wonderful and totally transforms the space. Great job!! I'm laughing because we do the craziest things to get the job done! te he! xoxo

  7. How creative Laurie, it really looks GREAT!!!

  8. Come sempre Laurie ottimo lavoro. Sta decisamente meglio! Vorrei chiederti una cosa: ho provato il trasferimento di immagini con la colla MOD PODGE, come hai spiegato tu in un post, ma non mi è riuscita molto bene. Se tolgo tutta la carta, viene via anche la scritta. Tu hai usato una stampante laser o a getto d'inchiostro? Sotto è necessaria una vernice pareticolare? Devo grattare molto o lasciare una strato di carta sul vaso? Aiutami ti prego!
    Ricorderò Anna nelle mie preghiere!
    As always, great job Laurie. He is definitely better! I would like to ask you something: I tried to transfer pictures with glue mod podge, as you've explained in a post, but it's come out badly. If I remove all the paper, it is also written on. You used a laser or inkjet? Below is a paint pareticolare necessary? I have to scratch a lot or leave a layer of paper on the pot? Help me please!
    Anna remember in my prayers!

  9. I have to agree with hubby...this was one terrific idea. I have added one more thing to my growing Christmas list, a palm sander. Great job!

  10. I agree with above...a palm sander is definitely on my xmas list too the new look, iron on hem is fab isn't it....I've got a little footstool ready to try my first "paint job" wish me luck!
    Love Gail x

  11. That was a great idea, Laurie! I don't know why hubby's are so surprised that we actually have them! : ) I think it looks great; you deserve to do your happy dance. I was thinking about your beadboard comment. Maybe you could put a piece in this area and use the heavy duty double stick tape they use for carpets and just attach it right to the tile for a temporary lift. It might also give you an idea of how it would look as a backsplash without the committment.

  12. Just beautiful Laurie! Talk about thinking outside the box! Love the patina:)

  13. your new top looks wonderful, laurie! love the skirt, and your bead board backsplash idea:)

  14. My good-ness BABY! *swak* YOU have done it AGAIN!!! SO G-R-E-A-T!!!! I'm a lovin' it too....

  15. What did you do with that little back piece against the tile? I guess the tile went all the way down or did you pull off the whole top piece? Looks wonderful. Great Happy Dance too!

  16. I love it Laurie! So you took the original counter off first I assume. How neat!!! Would love to do that here cupboards look pretty much like yours!!

  17. Hi Laurie, You are too funny! I love that table top!!! What a great idea, and it looks wonderful!
    Happy dancing with you. Thanks for the reminder about Anne.
    ~ Julie

  18. Love the new countertop....there's just something so satisfying about using something we have already to make something better.
    xo Jana

  19. Looks great !! yes i know about sad......loosing your mom is so hard........i have lots of grief need from

  20. You had a vision!! It looks beautiful, Laurie! I wouldn't mind having counter tops like this!! Kudos to hubby for his help...he's a sweetie!


  21. I love your new desk top! It's awesome!

    Thank you for mentioning Anne. I'm so far behind in reading my favorite blogs that I'd missed it.

  22. How cool! It came out so great and looks so pretty! Don't you love it when you get the hubby to help and he thinks it was his idea and not yours, lol. Your pulled a good one, can't fool an old fooler like myself!

    PS: I am going to have to try some of that chalk paint!

  23. Oh my gosh, I laughed so hard reading this! I read it out loud to my husband cuz I do the same thing, I dance around squealing when he's doing stuff for me:)

    It turned out beautifully, what a fantastic idea!!! Love it!

  24. I love what Team Laurie accomplished. Poor guy probably never knew what hit him. It looks GREAT! So much better. We had ugly tile in this house too and I painted it quick as a flash.

    I have painted many countertops and they hold up great. I always ended with poly and put car paste wax on top as the final sealer.

    Your idea is so much better. That is some wonderful old wood you found there! Ah...just don't spill any CrazyDog/SappyCat on there! xo Diana

  25. Unless I missed something, the total cost of this fantastic upgrade to your kitchen was $0, wasn't it. I love it when we have the materials on hand to make such a great project! You're so smart.

    Black toenails? Me, too. :)

  26. Woohoo! this looks awesome sis! What a great idea! So glad that Rog liked it too!
    What a busy summer you have had.

  27. I love this! What an awesome job you did!


  28. As everyone has said, you and hubby did a fantastic job.! It's amazing what a little ingenuity and elbow grease can do to perk up something that we don't particularly like. You are not the only people with a tv like that. We have them all over the house. They are so convenient to put in a small space. Thanks for the nice compliment you recently left for me. I really appreciate it.---Shannon

  29. Wow, this looks amazing! You guys did an awesome job. I looove the patina of the wood and the way you whitewashed it. Fantastic!

    Have a great week!

    God Bless,

  30. I it!!! So cute and simple to do:):):)
    And I love your feet! Too cute!

  31. I'd be doing the happy dance too Laurie, it looks great! Oh, and by the way, I aged a few baskets using your tutorial...they look great, thanks!!

  32. You are the cutest eva!!!! I LOVE it, it looks so beautiful and I am so relieved to know that there is hope for hubbies out there who doubt us so. LOL! :)
    Love your tootsies!!! :)

  33. Laurie, what a fantastic idea!! it looks divine!! no wonder you did a bit of a happy dance!! I would love my floors to look just the very same, you are such a pro with a paintbrush!!! Love all your baskets too. i wouldnt have thought to paint them black first! might have to try that on my ugly old baskets!
    Hope you and your lovely family are all well! blessings to all of you sweet laurie!
    Laura xxx

  34. You are so clever, Laurie, that looks great! I love your nice weathered painting technique. Did you take the little piece off the back of the countertop? I don't see it. Hope you had a good weekend :)

  35. You inspire me and make me laugh everytime Laurie!

    great job!


  36. Little things that radically change the look of a thing! So inspiring. O and btw, can we paint tiles? Which paint did you use. I have an ugly backsplash I want to paint!

  37. What a creative idea!! You found something you had on hand, so it didn't cost any extra, and it looks awesome. Great job.

  38. Hello Laurie! It's always me! I wanted to tell you that I wrote a post all about you and your technique of transferring images. Tell me if I did a good job following your instructions. Thanks again!

  39. Love this! You did a great job! I will have to try some of your whitewash paint technique!

    Love that picture of your Maizie Grace! What a honey pie!

  40. Hi Laurie
    Sorry it's taken me so long to pop over.. still trying to catch up with everyone...

    Well I love this little curtain. simple .. beautiful and effective.. what could be better.. There is something about impromptu curtains that always looks delightful!! And your tv? well.. my main tv is not much better.. just bigger.. sad but true.. yes the dinosaur lives [just].. hehe

    Thanks so much for all your lovely comments my way.. It' not my work that had me travelling..just a passion to get back to europe so I took five weeks in France and Italy..

    Have a lovely week.. and thanks again.. ciao xxx Julie

  41. Love this idea.
    Just found your blog. I enjoy it
    very much!

  42. fantastic! transforms a cute kitchen into a French tre chic one!
    great idea...


  43. What a great transformation Laurie, the counter top came out beautiful. You and hubby did a great job And I'm loving the skirt, what a great idea. As for that tv of yours, I have a couple of them that don't seem to want kick the bucket.
    Marianne :)

  44. hahaha,,,,we still have that tv too!

  45. It looks great! Thank you for linking up with Home Sweet Home!

  46. I love the vintage look of it. I found some long boards and I want to take a super long potting table for our porch!!! You've got me going to work on it now! ;-)

  47. Oh my gosh, that is GORGEOUS!! really...that "after" picture just makes me smile!! I laughed picturing your hubby telling you to stop dancing...hilarious!!

  48. Oh, I love this! It is perfect now! What a great idea!

  49. Laurie, I love it! I have been thinking of white washing a small kitchen island and you are giving me And by the way, don't feel bad about the tv because I have one like that in my bedroom and love it!

    Maria @ Linen & Verbena

  50. You Sweet lady! I'd be dancing too! Fantastic idea and I just love the look of weathered wood.
    Have a wonderful weekend,
    Hugs Rosemary...xx

  51. That was a great idea, it turned out beautiful!

  52. Hi Laurie,
    Great job, I love your and your Mr. did it together, it makes it all the more satisfying :-)
    Thanks for the sweet words on the girls, the are Italain Greyhounds and join the four boys! We have a crazy busy house, which has gone to the dogs lately, but it's a lot of fun:-)

  53. This is so good looking! What a terrific job you you and hubby did! And now if know a secret about you: You are one of those girls that sometimes dance on the table. ;)

    So happy you linked to Potpourri Friday. I appreciate you!

  54. Gorgeous! Don't it just feel goooooooood when you have an idea and it turns out spiff! I love it!

  55. Laurie this is fantastic and I absolutely inspired what you did with your countertop and that gray weathered board, it is such a Fabulous idea. I have been thinking of white washing a small kitchen island and you are giving me ideas.

  56. Don't you just love when things work out as planned. Love the new top, it's a wonderful face lift for sure. Keep doin the happy dance.

  57. The joy of a completed DIY project is the best. Your desktop is very pretty.


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