Today’s project was put together for our friends baby girl’s 1st birthday. She’s an adorable little girl who’s constantly on the move and I’m still shocked that she’s already one!
Pst… Here’s the pink paint project we posted about on our Instagram last week…
To be honest we were stumped about what to get her- it’s been a long time since either of us were that young ; ) So, when a personalized stool was suggested, we almost immediately hopped into the car and took a quick (who am I kidding, they’re never quick) trip to IKEA to pick up an unfinished Bekvam stool. I’ve seen the stool 500 different ways on Pinterest, so we knew it would hold up and would be something she could potentially keep for a few years.
We went for a paint and stain finish, so gathered up our supplies (stain is not pictured- we used a custom mix) and got to work.
First step was to sand everything down- these parts are mass produced- aka not smooth and need some sanding. We did this in the kitchen to minimize the clean up process, but would’ve loved to do this outside! M even got to test out his new Milwaukee power tools for this part, which passed with flying colors : )
We decided to finish every piece separately before putting the stool together, so next up we used a good bonding primer and covered all of the legs, leaving the steps untouched as they were going to get stained.
Now the fun part- after the primer was dry, we covered the legs in 3 coats of Behr’s Exotic Bloom with a small foam brush. It’s a bright hot pink color that was way too much fun to pick out at Home Depot. Not often do I get to play in that section of the paint samples and we wanted a color that she’ll hopefully love : )
After the paint was dry we made sure to poly each piece multiple times to hopefully withstand the beatings of regular use. While that was drying (lots of dry time on this project) we moved to the steps. We stained both pieces by brushing on black tea, and 30 minutes later brushing on two coats of a steel wool and apple cider vinegar mixture. Our mix had been “cooking” for about two weeks, giving it that deep gray tone with a hint of red. It’s our favorite way to stain, and we love that it can be done inside!
After that was dry we sanded down the edges for a more worn look and added one coat of poly. This one layer of poly will help the white stenciled letters we wanted to add from yellowing over time. Here’s a comparison of one poly’d piece and one without, to show how the poly deepens the tint of the stain and makes the variations in the wood grain come through.
Now it’s time for the lettering. I printed off what I wanted the numbers and name to look like from my computer (just play around with fonts until you’re in love) and traced them on the steps with a pencil. After that, I used a small angled brush, aka my best friend for this project, and went right over the pencil with some white paint from a leftover test pot. A few coats later, we had a numbered and personalized step!
To protect the steps we added another 3 coats of poly, and then put the whole thing together.
And we were done! One unfinished IKEA Bekvam stool made into a hot pink 1st birthday present for a sweet little girl.
What have you been up to this week? Painting anything in crazy bright colors? This project was all about the kids- but make sure to stop back on Friday for a fun post that’s for the adults in the room : )
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