My entry for the March Fab Furniture Flippin’ Contest involved some mixing and matching, planning and painting, false starts and fun fabric … plus a whole lot of crossing my fingers that my idea for creating a Kids Book Nook would turn out as cute in real life as it looked in my head.
It all started with this outdated art-deco style vanity. This was one of the treasures we brought home from our World’s Longest Yard Sale Adventure from a few summers ago.
The only trouble with the vanity was … nobody else wanted it! It has been for sale since a few summers ago at our shop, All Things New Again in Leesburg, VA.
I wasn’t giving up on this clunky vanity yet. I knew it was the perfect piece to try to repurpose for the Fab Furniture Flippin’ Contest, a monthly challenge where bloggers create amazing furniture transformations for a chance to win awesome prizes.
This month’s contest is sponsored by Fairfield World and the theme is Mix and Match.
A family-owned business for 75 years, Fairfield World manufactures everything you need for DIY upholstery projects from the foam to fillers to fabric. Products are made in the USA using sustainable practices in manufacturing and distribution.
DISCLOSURE: Fairfield World provided me with the foam and other items to complete my entry for the contest. All opinions are my own.
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My first thought for this competition was to cut up the vanity and make matching nightstands out of the two sides with the drawers like my mom did with these pretty lavender nightstands.
Then I thought about turning that weird shelf area in the middle of the vanity into a bench for my new glammed-up foyer. It would be a great place to put on your shoes before heading out the door. Unfortunately, the weird shelf was waaaaaaay too close to the floor for an adult to comfortably sit on it.
(Actually, sitting down was OK. Getting back up was the hard part when I tried it out!)
While the bench wasn’t comfortable for me, my 4-year-old son Joey loved it. That’s when I got my best idea yet: What if I made this perfectly kid-sized spot into a little bench where he could sit and read all by himself? (Or at least look through the books until he learns how to read.) And the drawers would make extra storage to hold books or anything else a 4-year-old likes to squirrel away.
After a few false starts, my idea for a Kids Book Nook was born!
I found the perfect fabric for this project on Spoonflower, an easy-to-get-lost-in website where artists upload their designs and you can select one to print on fabric, gift wrap or wallpaper.
DISCLOSURE #2: In addition to this month’s Fab Sponsor Fairfield World, Spoonflower also offered me a discount to use on fabric for my contest entry. Again, all opinions are my own.
The fabric I chose is called Bookworms designed by artist Brenda Zapotosky. (Find her on Instagram @brendazapotosky)
How cute are these little worms? I love their silly personalities—and that top hat! My Kids Book Nook idea was coming together.
Now all I had to do was create it …
Mixing and Matching
I started by removing the mirror from the vanity and painting the base black.
Because the contest theme was Mix and Match, I decided to paint the drawers different colors pulled from the Bookworm fabric (and any open paint cans I already had on hand).
Then I mixed it up even more by painting the hardware in each of the drawer colors, drybrushing them black and placing them on a different colored drawer. I love the crazy mismatched look.
That was the easy part! I know how to paint. I know how to re-cover existing seats with new fabric. This was my first time creating a seat cushion from scratch. I kind of learned as I went along. I chose a 4” thick NuFoam pad from Fairfield World for the seat. It was thick and cushy and (thankfully!) it fit the width of my seat PERFECTLY!
I only had to make one cut for the length.
I read online that an electric carving knife works great to cut upholstery foam. We have one somewhere, but I knew my husband would have a fit if he went to carve the Thanksgiving turkey and there were bits of foam stuck to the knife. I used a steak knife instead since we have a bunch of those and he wouldn’t miss one.
It worked great. I used a combination of scoring across the top layer of foam then doing a sawing up and down motion to get through the next few layers. Then repeating the scoring and sawing until I got all the way through all 4 inches of the foam. Next, I wrapped the pad with Cushion Wrap from Fairfield World to make the seat even cushier.
I planned to save the section of NuFoam pad that I cut away for another project. Then I got another brilliant idea. That scrap of foam already fit across the bench … and was now the perfect height for a little backrest. I enlisted my product tester to try it out right before bedtime.
He agreed the backrest made the seat more comfy.
For the finishing touches, I added some fun quotes about reading down the sides of the drawers—a little secret message to the reader.
This stuff is cool! It has a thicker texture than regular fabric—perfect for kid crafts—but I think it is also perfect for lining drawers. It comes in a rainbow of colors so it would work with most projects. I chose black for this one.
Here is the finished Kids Book Nook!
Are a furniture flippin’ blogger? Would you like to participate in future contests? Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
If you just love awesome furniture transformations, please visit this month’s Fab Furniture Flippin’ Contest hosts:
You will find on their pages the links to all of this month’s contest entries for more Mix and Match fun.
But you will only find my favorite Dr. Seuss quote about reading right here on the All Things New Again Blog ….