Monday, October 21, 2013

Adventurer's Night Stand

 I wanted to call today's post, One Night Stand which is what it is. But you know how search engines are.

Anyway, this is a sad little piece of furniture, is it not? Dull. Dated. Drab. I was wondering what to do with it. I knew I'd paint it but as I looked at it those little details on the drawers seemed like frames to me. I decided to put something in them that I love...

Maps. You can even see a giant one rolled up in the background in this photo.

 But first I had to remove the old shellac finish from the top, sand and stain it. Now, the fun part.

 Oh yes, and removing hardware. NOW the fun part.

I wanted to paint this piece the color of an old map. Well, when I got out my collection of atlases (read travel nerd) it was harder than I thought. Some map collections are heavy on blue and others green. But this atlas, had just what I was after, a faded time worn turquoise. I had something close left over from the mirror in yesterday's post so I added a blob of bright turquoise acrylic and a shot of brown.

I loved how subtle it was. Once the piece was painted I set about adding the maps using Mod Podge. Am I the only person who can't use this stuff? I always have air bubbles. While I waited for them to dry I waxed and aged the main piece. 

In retrospect I'm sorry that I didn't take the time to copy these maps and not actually cut the atlas. But the paper had a nice quality I wanted to maintain at the time. Seeing the finished product though I doubt that slight detail would have made a difference.

Hindsight...and all that.

What you can't really see in these photos and what I didn't see until I went to put the drawers in was that the map on the bottom drawer was upside down. Which wouldn't have mattered except that I used a section of map that said "East Indies" in large letters.

I know you just keep showing up to bask in the glory of my imperfection.

I tore small pieces of leftover map just big enough to cover the words and it is impossible to notice.
Once the Mod Podge was dry I waxed and aged the drawers. Here's how it turned out.


  1. aMAZing. I have no other words to describe how much I love this piece. If it turns up missing, you'd have quite a few friends and family members as suspects... you know the love of old maps run deep and wide.

  2. tip on mod podge on paper...paper expands when it gets wet can see this as it curls up a bit after applying mod podge...wait for a few minutes and it will relax and lie flat again then apply to your project. It will reduce if not eliminate the air bubbles.

    1. Thanks for the tip! My biggest problem with projects is being impatient (my husband will attest to this) so I'm working on that. :)