Painting Our Cozy Corner Cabinet
If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen that I’m painting our cozy corner cabinet. Well, hallelujah, it’s done!
This little gem came from my parents. It made its home for a long time at my brother’s house, but one day he planted the idea in my head that he might not want it anymore—and pretty much instantaneously I knew exactly where I was going to put it and what I was going to use it for. I could not wait for him to fork it over, bro! 🤣
I just had to bide my time until he was ready to let the piece go. I had the perfect nook for it. Our upstairs hallway is small, and the emptiness of this one corner it made the area feel cold and bland. The artwork I put up (actually framed gift bags that I thought were pretty!) just didn’t help. At least twice a week I dreamily thought of how perfect the cabinet would be in this particular corner:
Finally one day he toted it over to my house (thank you!) in his truck and I gleefully brought it in the house, manically giggling the whole time. OK, maybe not out loud, but in my head, I was totally a crazy villain shrieking with delight over some evil victory… muah ha ha!
I got started immediately with a quick sanding. I didn’t even bust out my power sander; there were too many nooks and crannies for that.
When I wiped it down with the tack cloth to remove the sanding dust and general grime, I saw that the sanding had revealed a lot of blemishes in the wood. I chose not to fill them, but to let the character shine. (In other words, I didn’t want to spend any extra time filling holes!)
I noticed that in the blue painted areas, some knots in the wood were showing through the paint. I had read that this can happen if you don’t use primer, but I’d never seen it in action. And now that I had, I practically ran to get my primer. I used Zinsser Cover Stain and some foam brushes to apply it (I know, tsk tsk!). If you use a brush, you have to wash it with paint thinner or throw the brush away, and I can’t be bothered with that
The primer dried quickly and I got down to business painting. I used a leftover gray from one of the rooms in our house for inside the shelves, and a leftover white from the trim in our house for the face of the piece.
After that, I applied two more coats of paint. For the last coat, I followed the paint with a foam roller to smooth the paintbrush lines.
In my delight, I rushed the piece upstairs to its final resting place—as usual, too soon. I figured the detail work would be quick and easy and so, heck! I’d just do it in place. 🙄 Say hello to nineteen trips up and down two flights of stairs.
First, I had to deal with the hinges. I couldn’t get the door off when I was painting it because one of the screws was stripped, so I had to paint around the hinges, and I didn’t really do a great job of it. To cover my mess up, I used leftover gilding paint from the vanity I refinished. (Apparently this is the Project of Leftover Paints.)
There. Not perfect, but much better:
Then, I had to put on the new knob that I bought on Amazon. I LOVE it! I had also purchased a latch, but I decided it would have overwhelmed the door, so I put it away in my stash of random hooks, latches, knobs, etc. (Wait, you don’t have one of those? I thought everyone had one of those.) I put a magnet latch on the inside instead.
I wish I had planned for ditching the latch in advance, though, since I didn’t bother to sand down the areas around the old latch before I painted. No biggie. It’s very difficult to see from anywhere other than a nose’s length away.
Next, I had to figure out the positioning. There were two problems. First, I had to secure it to the wall since it was so light and could easily be pulled over by innocent, curious (tiny) hands. Second, the baseboard meant that this thing would have a serious lean if I wanted the crown across the top to rest flush against the wall:
We can see this from our bedroom door and as I stood there taking pictures of it, I knew it would drive me mental to see that every day. When I secured it to the wall, I made sure to lean it upright a bit, balancing out the slanted space and leaving about a finger’s width between the wall and the crown on both sides.
So, here it is!
I love the way it came out! The heart bouquet photo on the top shelf is a free printable from Bower Power (and she also made one in pink—perfect for Valentine’s Day!), and the other items are from around the house. The pig and elephant are the kids’ piggy banks, but I love how they double as decor.
I was a little bummed about the large gap between the top of the cabinet and the ceiling, but my mom had a great idea: I could put something up there and it would serve as a great “showcase” location. I think the idea is fabulous, but now I just have to find something to put up there! 😂
Don’t you think the space is much warmer with the cozy corner cabinet there? What are your thoughts on corner cabinets in general? I was worried it might be too “country” for my taste, but I’m so glad I decided to try it!
Here’s the official before and after. I think it came a long way!