Cheap White Desk and Chair
Pottery Barn Style
you ready for this?
For Christmas this year, my 7.5 year old daughter badly wanted a desk for her room more than anything. She's starting to feel like a big girl, growing out of the princess phase and coming into a creative big girl phase where she wants a place to sit down and write, read, be creative and she needed lots of drawers to keep all her papers, note cards, and arts and craft supplies organized. So...although she's grown out of princesses and realized the princesses at Disney are just pretending...she hasn't grown out of Santa quite yet so she asked Santa for a white desk and chair.
I was more than happy about this request as it made it excited about reading and writing which was our biggest battle all last year...working on reading and writing. So if she had a place that made her inspired to do those things on her own...I was all for it. Then I started shopping for a white desk with drawers and a wooden chair to match...um....wow...Santa wasn't planning on spending $400 on one person. So I started searching craigslist and a thrift store that is near our house regularly. Even on craigslist, white wooden children's desks are not cheap! I really didn't want to spend more than $100 and in my search, for like $80-100 I could get a really cheap white desk at Ikea, Target or Walmart but with no drawers...just simple white legs and top...NOT what I was looking for. So I stayed patient and just kept looking.
One day I dropped her off at gymnastics and then popped into the thrift store and there it was...a dingy white wooden desk with lots of drawers and a wooden chair. The paint looked nasty...like it was yellowish and a really bad paint job and the chair had really ugly flowers painted on it...but I was SO happy! I was ready to strip and primer vintage wooden desks I had seen on craigslist that were more that this one and this one needed a lot less work since it was already white-ish. So for $40 I got a cheap white wooden desk and chair with 7 drawers. So I got a small can of semi'gloss white paint and home depot and the next week knobs and drawer pulls were 50% off at hobby lobby. I found these pretty turquoise "glass" knobs and this awesome turquoise chevron drawer liner paper that was also 50% off and I was all set to go!
My inlaws came for Christmas so while Grammie and Grampa enjoyed the kids, I was able to sneak downstairs to "Santa's Workshop" and in no time had this baby sanded, painted and put back together. My only hiccup was I was so excited to use the power sander for the first time. We found it in the basement when we moved in. I started and it was AMAZING!!!!!.....for about 1 minute and then the foam pad that holds the sanding paper to the sander started to disintegrate and foam started flying everywhere. So I had to sad the rest by hand....which wasn't a huge deal but getting the chair smooth where those ugly thickly painted flowers were took some elbow grease!
The paint dried fast so I would paint a coat on everything, come upstairs and be with the family...then run down later and do another quick coat...it really wasn't as big a job as I thought it would be.
So without further ado....here is the cheap DIY white and turquoise desk and chair makeover! My daughter LOVES it and was so excited it had lost of drawers, and was even more excited when she opened the drawers and saw the pop of color inside with the turquoise chevron drawer liners. I love it too!
(hubby hadn't trimmed the end of the knobs yet because we were pretty tired Christmas eve when everything was wrapped up but it's a simple thing to do)
It really pays to be thrify and put in a little elbow grease! Even if you can afford to buy the $400+ desk from pottery barn,to me it's more fun in the end to have gone on a treasure hunt, found the right thing and then made it pretty again...I enjoy it more, plus kids stuff rarely stays nice forever anyways so when it does get dinged up, at least I have the matching paint for touch ups!
Here is the before & after shot...I was so excited to get started I didn't remember to take a real "before" shot before getting started. I took a these with my iphone 3 which has a horrible camera and the lack of quality actually makes the desk and chair look better than they were! lol!
The drawers also had different colored knobs with big screws in the middle....not too cute. The sides of the desk were a mix of not full coverage white and yellowed paint with drips.