Upcycled Shoe Box

Having stumbled across a cutesy Victorian wooden box in a charity shop, I decided I would take on the upcycle challenge…

Step 1 – Strip the old fabric from the box

Despite being from Liberty’s, I stripped the fabric on the top – discovering layer after layer of different fabrics; each smelling as musty and smoky as the last, and no doubt each with it’s only story.

Step 2 – Hose the box down and wash

To get rid of the smell of smoke (perhaps it was used as a place to store tobacco once upon a time?!), I hosed down the box in the shower and gave it a good wash. I then filled in some of the holes with wood filler.

Step 3 – Apply the Furniture Stripper

Wanting a lighter overall colour, I bought the following Colron furniture stripper from B&Q and applied to the box with a paintbrush. It’s important to do this in a well ventilated area as the smell is really quite strong! The stipper was then left for around 30 minutes.

Step 4 – Sand down the box with steel wool

I went all over the box with some steel wool rubbing the stripper away. Surprised at how quickly the box lightened (much easier to sanding!!). As you can see in the picture on the right, the box was already taking on a more natural / rustic look.

Step 5 – Paint Box

Wanting more of a grey distressed look, I mixed up some of my Annie Sloan French Linen with the Old White to create a grey colour and just dabbed on with a cloth rubbing all over. Very pleased with the final result 🙂

Step 6 – Cover top with fabric

Having a travel background, I settled on a grey map of the world fabric for the top, and this was applied using my staple gun. Voila!

2015-09-11 07.29.20

Now to find something to put in it!! 🙂


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