Paint me please!

For as long as I can remember, this bookshelf has been in my life. When I was little, it was in our living room. When I was a teen, it was used for storage in the basement. Now, it’s living with me.

I’ve always liked the look and shape of it. However, it was looking dated and old. I decided to give it a lift to make it vintage and awesome instead. Along the way, I discovered a love for painting furniture. Like this piece. I have plans for you, night table, dresser and weird old cabinet by the door. You’re going to look amazing.

But back to the bookshelves.

This is before. It had a lot of stuff on it.

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Since I decided on this makeover in November, I had to do it indoors. The living room was going to have to do.

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I primed it with an oil-based primer, no need to sand anything.

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I added two coast of pretty blue latex paint and voilà! New shelves!

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I love how fresh and airy it looks now. It feels like a little bit of summer in my living room all the time. Since it’s February, that’s a great feeling!

Making over my yoga space

When I did my yoga teacher training last July, I learned the importance of having a home practice. Sure, it’s great to take classes, but it’s also good to have your own, self-guided practice. I didn’t have a special space dedicated to yoga, so I decided to create one in my spare bedroom.

My neighbours moved out, new neighbours moved in, and this fantastic, old, wooden, cabinet was left outside. I thought it was just being left out while the moving was getting done, but then I realized it had been out there for weeks, it had been rained on, and basically forgotten. I asked them what they planned to do with it, and they said “We don’t want it, it was left here, we’ll just throw it out.” My heart stopped for a second, thinking that this beautiful piece would end up in the trash. I asked if I could have it and they gladly gave it to me and helped me move it up to the third floor. Lovely people!

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It needed a lot of love. Parts of it were painted, parts of it were stained. The wood had swelled from the rain, the doors didn’t close, pieces had fallen off. It’s a good thing I was planning on saving it.

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I took the doors off and brought them to my dad. He fixed the broken mesh screen and sanded down the bottom of the doors so they would close again.

I learned how to use wood glue and clamps to try and get it back to it’s original shape. I used plastic wood. I cleaned and sanded it. And then I cleaned it again. There was a lot of dirt and a few bugs too.

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My mama came over for a few days to help me pretty it up. She brought the doors my dad had fixed and she had painted. We primed the whole piece with an oil-based primer, then hit it with three coats of sunshine.

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I also wanted a wall of picture frames. Different shapes and sizes, but all the same colour. I had a few already, then bought a couple more at a thrift store and one at a decorating store. I set them out on the floor to see what it would look like on the wall. I ended up returning the circular one in the top left corner and replacing it with a lace-like frame instead.

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I tried to just spray paint the frames, but it wasn’t sticking, so I primed them using the same oil-based primer I used for the cabinet. It worked really well.

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I spray painted the frames indoors, as I live in an apartment and don’t have a yard, but I would recommend doing it outside if you can. It gets pretty stinky. Thankfully, it was summer, so I had all the windows and doors open.

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Then, I pulled everything together to create a beautiful, peaceful, zen yoga space. I love it!

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It all came together beautifully. It was a lot of work, but it was worth it. I now have a place to practice whenever I feel like it. It definitely helps to have a designated yoga space if you want to build a home practice. Lately, it’s been mostly used for yin-type yoga, but I also use the space when I plan out the classes I teach. Now, if you’ll excuse me, my mat is calling to me!