Upcycling with spray paint

14 Comments
posted on September 19, 2012 by  |  posted under Crafting, Decorating

Upcycling with spray paint

If spray paint gets a bad rap, it shouldn’t.  Apart from being the tool of choice for taggers and vandals, when pointed in the right direction, it can be a positive contributor to society.  As an avid crafter and DIY diva, I love using spray paint and here’s why: it is fast, easy, and quite classy.  {My grandpa would have supplemented that phrase with, “Just like an old girlfriend I once had…”}

Upcycling with spray paint

I love searching out ‘diamond in the rough’ pieces that would be perfect candidates for a spray paint “upcycle.”  When I go shopping, I bee-line to the back of the store to search for clearance items that pack potential.  Clearance racks, garage sales, thrift stores, and even your own shabby pieces can be easily transformed with a little spray paint.  Here are some examples.

Upcycling with spray paint

This was on clearance at TJ Maxx for $3.  The color was drab and it wasn’t a statement piece until…

Upcycling with spray paint

…it got a shiny coat of black spray paint!  I finished it off with another coat of gloss spray to give it some extra gleam.  Now I’m proud to put it in my living room.

This piece was 90% off at Hobby Lobby because it was pretty scratched up.  It fit perfectly with the vision I had for my daughter and son’s room (he got demoted in preparation for the new baby).  Even though he’s only two, I didn’t want the room to be overtly girly.

Upcycling with spray paint

I gave it a few fine coats of bright yellow spray paint.

Upcycling with spray paint

This mirror was a $2 garage sale treasure.  I failed to take a picture of the “before” but it was a tacky gold color that I would normally turn my nose up at.  But after a coat of white spray paint, I love the cute, vintage look it gives the room.

Upcycling with spray paint

One benefit to all the construction going on in my neighborhood are the great scrap piles!  After asking permission of course, I looked through the scraps that would otherwise be tossed and found this.  After a few coats of the same yellow spray paint…

Upcycling with spray paint

and a few hot glued clothes pins, this chunky wood piece became a funky frame.

Upcycling with spray paint

Does anyone else love the “as is” section of Bed Bath and Beyond?  I found these shelves there for $4.  They were display pieces and there wasn’t much wrong with them besides a few scratches.

Upcycling with spray paint

One got a fresh coat of white and finished my kids’ room project.

Upcycling with spray paint

And the other got a flirty orange makeover to add some pop to the guest bathroom, along with these old frames I had stowed away in my coat closet.

Upcycling with spray paint

They both got new coats of white spray paint and became this…

Upcycling with spray paint

So before you turn your nose up at a derelict piece, imagine what a little spray paint can do!  Spray paint is fairly simple to use, but these tips come in handy:

1) Paint in a well-ventilated space and use newspaper or other large scrap paper to paint on.  And don’t paint if it is windy.  The overspray can get everywhere.

2) Be patient.  Apply multiple thin coats, otherwise the paint will drip or pool up.  Let the project dry before applying extra coats.

3) Some bottles of spray paint have a tiny white cap attached to the aerosol button.  DON’T REMOVE IT!  (This lesson was obviously learned the hard way as paint splattered everywhere!)

4) You can find spray paint at most one-stop stores like Wal-mart and Target, but you’ll get a larger color selection at specialty hardware stores like Home Depot or Lowes, or craft stores.

Upcycling with spray paint

Spray painted projects in this room: metal flower on dresser, mirror, yellow picture frame, and the rocking chair.

I love using spray paint to up-cycle an otherwise dowdy project.  Now go out and look for those diamonds in the rough to transform into something fun and wonderful!

Upcycling with spray paint

14 Comments
COMMENTS
  1. September 19th, 2012 at 2:07 pm
    Missy says:
    I love the transformations! It always amazes me what a little paint can do. You found some great treasures..how fun!
  2. September 19th, 2012 at 6:32 pm
    Devon says:
    I am in the process of redecorating my daughters room and creating a room for my toddlers (boy and girl), I have a few garage sale finds and you have just inspired me to go with spray paint to bring them back to life! Thank you!!
    • September 19th, 2012 at 8:15 pm
      Nicolette says:
      Oh good! How fun, we are in the same boat! Good luck.
  3. September 19th, 2012 at 8:14 pm
    Kate says:
    Ah! I'm in love with your little girl's room. I especially love that flower ball, lucky find! I'm in the mood to find me something to spray paint pronto.
  4. September 19th, 2012 at 8:21 pm
    Holly says:
    Wow! I definitely would have turned up my nose at those shelves, but you made them useful and beautiful. I am thinking I need to visit the clearance sections!
  5. September 19th, 2012 at 10:12 pm
    Kendall says:
    Wow! Just found your blog via pinterest! I am from Middleton Idaho! Small world! I recently found a love for spray paint, my hubby thinks I am crazy. I always bring junk home and jazz it up with some new paint. Our house is decorated with repainted yard sale stuff, I look forward to reading more of your posts!!
    • September 20th, 2012 at 10:34 am
      Nicolette says:
      Small world! I think my hubby's finally over the fact that I bring "treasures" home, except the time I hauled a huge wingback chair that might have been a mouse's home:)
  6. September 20th, 2012 at 6:46 am
    Stacey says:
    Did you prime these pieces first? Especially the frames. I have a couple I've been wanting to spray paint myself!! Did you put a glossy coat on the frames or just give them a coat of paint?
    • September 20th, 2012 at 10:37 am
      Nicolette says:
      The only priming I did was some sanding by hand, but that is it. Then they just got a few coats of spray paint, no gloss. The only pieces I glossed were the metal ones that I wanted to be shiny. But it couldn't hurt if you wanted to try it!
  7. September 20th, 2012 at 8:33 pm
    alison says:
    Super! I love how cheap you found this and how it looks. You've got a good eye for junk;) So cute!!!
  8. September 28th, 2012 at 3:05 pm
    Mindy says:
    That's an awesome BBB find!
  9. September 30th, 2012 at 4:22 am
    Elizabeth says:
    You have a great eye! I LOVE spray paint! It has been my wallet saver for a while now, although I have been sticking to black and white mostly, I think you have inspired me to grab a funky color! Love the site :)
  10. September 30th, 2012 at 2:24 pm
    Jennifer says:
    I love the pops of color. I just bought a pumpkin orange spray paint today for a junky table I found on the street last weekend!
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