DIY Apartment Furniture

Photo by Steph Distasio

Joanna Gaines has become one of television’s leading ladies, especially among the college crowd. She’s spunky, creative, innovative and of course, has one hunk of a hubby. Not only do we want to be Joanna Gaines, but we want to work like Joanna Gaines. Her signature rustic style gives a clean, yet old look to trendy modern things. Valley decided to channel our inner Joanna and opt for some DIY apartment furniture. If you’re looking to save some cash and take on a project, here are the steps you can follow to get that cute, original furniture in your space.

Find your base
Photo by Steph Distasio

Photo by Steph Distasio

In this case, Valley took on an old dresser for a bedroom setting. This particular piece was originally listed at $50 at a yard sale in Northeast, PA.With a bit of haggling, begging and pleading, the seller agreed to a markdown of $30. It’s not exactly the prettiest piece but that’s basically the point!

Decide on a design

Keeping Jojo’s theme in place, Valley went with a rustic, distressed look for this piece. A light grey chalk paint was perfect for the room. Additionally, new knobs for the drawers gave the piece a more updated, elegant look. The chalk paint used in our DIY adventure was Valspar Chalky Finish Paint. There is a three-step-process to this brand but the final product is totally worth the work. The three cans cost about $17 each, depending on the retailer. There are also some ways to make the chalk paint yourself, check out this website if you’d like to opt for the DIY chalk paint as well. If you’re on a tighter budget, the antique wax isn’t exactly “essential” to the process. Skipping it won’t ruin your piece, so you can keep your paint costs around $35 if necessary. Knobs are super easy to stumble upon. For the sake of this project, we found a set of six from TJ Maxx that cost $6 per box.

Paint it up

The chalk paint is super easy to use. There is no sanding required before application; you can just start with your paint and brush directly on any surface. After about two coats, you can begin sanding. This part is totally up to your personal taste. Using a small piece of sandpaper, begin to wear away the point job you just so beautifully finished (we know, this may be painful). Valley went for a less distressed look, but applied in all the corners and details on the piece.

Wax wax wax

Once you have sanded to your liking, apply the finishing waxes. Similar to buffing a car, apply a small amount of wax to a clean cloth and begin in circular motions all over painted and sanded areas. The second wax process is what gives distressed furniture it’s “antique” coloring. Repeat the waxing process with the third can and voila! You are on your way to Joanna Gaines status.

Photo by Steph Distasio

Photo by Steph Distasio

Spruce it up

Replacing the knobs is the most fun part of this process. You can really add your own flair with colorful designs and patterns.

Go for it!

The end result of your piece will look perfect wherever you decide to place it. Without the use of antique wax, this project cost Valley about $75 total, with the piece of furniture included. It’s a conversational piece (because you know you’re going to want everyone who sees it to know that you were the creator of that beauty) and it’s functional, of course!

You’re on your way to the next episode of Fixer Upper! Share your DIY pieces with @ValleyMag on social media!