Tarting up a wardrobe

We have some old white rickety wardrobes, (cheap not real wood ones) which we have had some years and it was time for a face lift.

First of all clear a space and empty the wardrobe, remove the chipboard back.

Now using a stronger sheet of wood which fits the back of the wardrobe from edge to edge top to bottom about ¼ inch from the floor (to allow you to move the wardrobe with out pulling the back off). This will strengthen the whole wardrobe; I used MDF which I had cut at my local DIY store.

Square off the wardrobe by pulling and pushing it into shape, then place books or boards on the floor next to the wardrobe to stand the wood on to give you the height, this saves you trying to hold it up while working on it. Glue around the frame with a nail free glue and tack the top right and left hand corner of the board onto the frame. Just tap the tacks in far enough to hold the board, check that the frame is still square, then tack the bottom corners, check that the frame is square, then knock the tacks right in. Tack all the way down the sides and across the top and bottom.

There you go one reinforced wardrobe; I also did the chest of draws in the same way.

You can leave them like this, but what about that face lift?

There are lot’s of paints on the market that are designed for painting kitchen/bedroom furniture so it is possible to paint the whole thing, but if you don’t feel confident enough to do such a big job or don’t really have the time you can easily do a bit of stencilling. Stencils are quite cheap to buy and will last for years if you clean them and store them flat. This one cost me just over five pound.

First of all take off the handles and anything else that will spoil the finish, (stickers and other nasty things if you have small children).

Scrub the wardrobe with a sugar soap solution starting at the top, (it is quite surprising how much dirt comes off) and rise with clean water, leave to dry.

Place the stencil where you want it and stick it down, again there are lots of specialised glues and tapes for this, I used good old masking tape (a lot cheaper than the specialised stuff). Dip the tip of the stencilling brush, (I would recommend you buy a real stencilling brush) or sponge into the paint and swirl the brush onto a plate to remove some of the paint. Using a dabbing motion apply the paint to the stencil. Don’t put too much paint on, if you want a stronger colour wait for the first coat to dry then apply another coat.

Remove the stencil straight away and wipe the back, (sometimes paint can seep behind the stencil).

Once dry replace the handles either with the old ones or new ones for a new look.

A new set of wardrobes for less than a quarter of the price of a new set.

If I can do it anyone can



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