February 06, 2012

Just Like New - My Little Pew

Before we get started today, let's announce the winners of the Upcycled T-shirts Dress giveaway.  Our two winners are:
Drop me a note, ladies.  Congrats!

Back when we did the short series "Just Like New" I had a project I intended to use for the series.  It took me a while to finish it though, but now it's ready.

Here's the story.  I've been searching for an old pew for quite some time.  Every time I found one in the classifieds it was either massive or extremely expensive.  I kept looking.  I found one in an antique store but they wanted $250.  One day I was searched the classifieds and I saw an upcoming estate sale.  It was really some guy hired to clean out an abandoned home, but there were two really old little pews in the basement.

I went to the sale as soon as it began the next day and snatched one for $20.  I came home and my hands were black.  This is what it looked like and I think my husband thought I was nuts.  It was so dirty and it wobbled a lot.

Here is my little pew now.

My dad reinforced the pew by adding a 2x4 under the seat.  He reattached the piece that was falling off.  He also sanded that baby down.  Thanks Dad!

I got out my paint sprayer and painted the whole thing gray first.  I stocked up on the Martha Stewart sample paints at the Depot right when they were clearancing them out, so I only spent $4 total on paint.

This job made me fall in love with the paint sprayer even more.  It took about 5-10 minutes per coat and there are no brush lines.  After the gray I painted it this pale turquoise.

I got out my little sanding block to age it a bit.  I wanted the gray to show through in places to give it some depth and character.  The real wood shows through in spots as well.  After a while I decided to get out the electric sander and give it a little more roughing up.

Once it looked how I wanted it to I did something I've never done before for the final coat.  I used a paste wax.  ( I saw Kate use it and I wanted to try it out.)  You rub it on and it gives you a buffed, matte finish.  I personally like matte finishes - especially for things that I want to look old.  The wax dried really nicely and it was kind of fun to put on.  I was in Karate Kid mode (wax on, wax off....except you don't wax off :) and it was a good workout.  And obviously it doesn't leave brush lines either.  Yay.

So here are the exact paint/products that I used.

And here's a couple more looks at the finished pew.

I sanded enough for the gray to come through on more than just the edges.

The pew will double as a place for guests to sit to take their shoes on and off, but most importantly it's our "Sorry Bench."  (If you've ever read "the Entitlement Trap" they talk about a "Repentance Pew."  It's where you sit until you say what you did wrong and apologize.  I like the concept but a "Sorry Bench" sounded a little friendlier.)

Don't worry.  He's just posing for you.....though I've seen this look for real a lot today.

I have a few plans for this area/room that I'm super duper excited about.  It's the first area you see when you enter our home.  It was the dining room, until I sold our dining room table and put the piano in it's place.  (That's what freed up the office, which I'm converting to the craft room.)  Blah, blah, blah.  I'll show it all to you eventually.  There's lots to come....including something that will marry these two different colors together.

That's all for today.  Tomorrow I have a fun learning activity for kids.  See you then.  Thanks for reading.


  1. love your little bench! the color is great and the distressing looks fabulous!

  2. Really like the color, I've seen a lot of turquoise over the past year. I like the subtle ones mostest. Can't wait to see how you bring the colors together.

  3. OMG I love your bench...now I want one too!

  4. What a great find! It looks really nice, and will probably get alot of use :) I stocked up on the Martha paints too!

  5. Looks Great! Love the two colors (blue and red) together.

  6. JEALOUS! That looks great! Will you please please please tell me about that hutch-looking piece at the stairs?

  7. Looks great....love the idea of a sorry bench too!

  8. Wow! Love these colors. Now go look at my blog for today and see my birthday present in my dining room and see why I like the colors :) Robin a.k.a. The Marzipan Mommy

  9. Gorgeous! I love the color. It looks great with the red wall behind it too!

  10. My parents have a pew in their living room and I think it's so fun! But, theirs isn't turquoise, so your's wins, I think. Lol. So cute!

  11. We had a pew when I was growing up and I loved it. So when I saw one for $3 at a garage sale last summer I snatched it up. I painted mine white but love the blue you chose. Nicely done!

    So, I want the story on the black door. Does it go somewhere? We have a pretty big walk in closet off of our bonus room that I want to put a cool door on because we already call that room Narnia. This door would be perfect.

  12. Gorgeous, just gorgeous! Great job!

  13. Oh I love the pew! What a fantastic idea! I am itching now to get a spray painter. Almost got me talked into it (you know how much I hate to paint ;). How much were they again??

  14. that's gorgeous! i've been trying to get the church where we were married to let me buy one of their smaller ones but 5 years later they still won't let me....maybe someday! :)

  15. I love your pew and this color is my favorite. Just lovely!


  16. I loved how you keep on looking until you got one for the best price and one that would fit your house. Never give up!!

  17. That casual "... until I sold our dining room table and put the piano in it's place." But of course you did!
    Spoken like a true musician. And who needs a dining room table anyway?? ;-)

    You have the prettiest house Cheri!

  18. I read that book and have been wanting a pew too. I just don't know where I would put it. I love your bench.

  19. What an AWESOME bench! I love how it's smaller and more dainty. ;) We had one growing up and it was so fun to play on. I LOVE the martha stewart paints, such great colors. This is stunning!


  20. Wow Cheri that's fantastic! Well done!

  21. Just beautiful! That Yucca Plant is a perfect soft turquoise, I adore your hall bench!!! So glad you like the wax, it is a beautiful matte finish!


  22. Great bench... The color is perfect. Would you mind sharing what paint sprayer you use?

  23. Darling! Love the color and love the cost!!


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