A New Life For a Very Old Desk

The best thing about this project is that the desk didn’t cost me a cent. It came from a relative’s home directly to my home with no money spent, except a few bucks to paint and decorate it for my son’s room. Not only did it not cost me a cent, but it could be equally as cheap for you to do a project like this too!

After having my mother stay with us for several years, then transition to a nursing home before passing, the bedroom was ready once again for Brody to enjoy it. I wanted to give it a new sense of fun for my son who had transitioned quite a lot by offering his room to my Mom. He was anxious to move back into his own room, from his previous area in our finished basement. Before we talk about that though I must explain how things began to take shape.

My frugality takes place in many ways in my life, in food choices, restaurants, clothing and almost any purchase of new furniture. Out of necessity and later out of sheer pleasure, I have gained happiness in gleaning through thrift stores, antique stores and garage sales. By far the most rewarding shopping has been in my friends’ or family’s garages and basements. You know the ‘toss-offs’ of our lives, things that we never quite get rid of but plan to somehow break the ties that seem to bind us in many ways.

While visiting a relative one day recently I mentioned how I wanted to ‘shop’ her basement. From that I gained a rather large bookcase for my son’s room re-do. This bookcase is rather tall and long and is perfect for Brody’s room. I was so excited I couldn’t wait to appeal to another friend to help me haul it home. Which we did but not without a lot of repositioning it trying to get it into her van. But that’s another story (forgive my poor picture, I took this with my camera phone)

This same relative also offered me a small, plain desk that our great-grandfather had made. He was a master cabinet builder at a local, but long gone cabinet shop. Here is another pic of the top of the shelf, just in case some of my viewers don’t think I should have painted it. It just seemed like a ‘quick fix’ and my son was getting impatient to have his room finished and it has taken a long time for me to get to it.

I didn’t quite know what I would do with it, the legs were pretty wobbly and would need attention. So it sat in my living room without much purpose until it was fixed. Once I found (with the help of a good friend) how to fix this desk, my son suddenly called “dibbs” on it. He wanted it in his new room and decided his laptop should go on top of this small desk. I was delighted, because until then I had no idea how to use it. So I went about decorating this for his new adult style Paddington room he’s been asking for.

You see my son Brody, is a big fan of the movie Paddington, as I am also. When trying to do his new room make-over I wrestled with what theme to use. Once I realized how many times he watches Paddington, I knew there was no other theme we could do for his room. The big picture in this whole thing was that my Dad was a New York Central railroad engineer. Really he was! He loved his job and would take us on the engine for short rides with my Mom sitting in the car at a crossing to retrieve us in another small town down the line. So of course I had to include some NYC labels!

So I set about making a total Paddington room for him, yet wanting it to be an adult version (to satisfy Mom’s wishes). I decided to use travel stickers to decorate his furniture, to give the travel feel to the room. The stickers were bright and distinct and I knew they would add color to his rather white room.

Later I will do a tutorial for you on the best way to decoupage these stickers onto wood furniture. For now I just want to show off his new desk.

After I moved his furniture around for the best placement and moved in his new desk…Brody couldn’t stop sitting at his new piece of furniture. He spent all day for the next two days at his desk using his laptop he received from Santa at Christmas…

The new chair is one we purchased at a local thrift shop and it is nicely padded for apparently hours of entertainment :-)And just for those observant blog readers, you probably noticed I left his drawer free of paint, it was in good shape and I liked the look (of course it was also a bit easier to leave unpainted too.

Hope Brody’s new desk has inspired you to do something equally or beyond the realm of this project. Blessings as you reach out possibly toward a more creative home. Blessings to you and yours.

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