check it out.

A few weeks back I was chatting with Lori about our upcoming Junk Bonanza booth. She mentioned that we would need some sort of checkout counter, something we could stand at to write up receipts. Preferably with storage so we can throw some supplies/snacks/etc in there. So I started searching for something that would work, keeping in mind that it also had to meet my vintage fab standards. To be honest, I wasn’t optimistic.

But then, I came across this.

check it out before

Perfect height to stand at and write up receipts. Two shelves inside; one for paperwork, pens, receipt books and one for snacks, drinks, purses, sweaters, or whatever else we might need to have with us. It is as if this thing was made to be a checkout stand rather than a radio cabinet.  Check out the lovely details!  I knew it would be fab painted.

check it out before 2

It was listed at $100 on craigslist … which frankly was too much. So, I sent an offer of $50. And it was accepted! Woo hoo!

I sent Mr. Q to pick it up in Minneapolis, and when I got home and took a look at it in person there was much rejoicing. It’s perfect for my needs! And I knew it would also be a fun piece to revamp.

I immediately mixed up some MMS milk paint in Trophy and while waiting for the pigments to dissolve a bit, I threw some chicken in the oven and gave the piece a quick sanding. Then, while my chicken cooked, I gave the paint another stir and slapped on the first coat. After dinner, I gave it a second coat. While that was drying, I studied it. I knew I wanted to add some MMS Grain Sack to the curly raised details near the top, but I realized it would also be fun to paint the lower fretwork in Grain Sack. Then, to balance it out, I also painted the very bottom raised detail in Grain Sack. And naturally, a stencil was called for.

Sometimes you just have to go with the flow with milk paint. In this case, I spent quite a bit of time painting that fretwork with a tiny brush to get it just right, and then almost all of that paint chipped off!  Not to be defeated, I sanded the rest of it off and painted it again.  The 2nd time around there was less chipping thanks to the sanding.

check it out 4

Now … don’t tell anyone, but I just used painted cardboard to cover behind the fretwork.  To cover the upper opening, I used spray adhesive to adhere vintage book pages to cardboard.  The cardboard is just stapled in place from the back.  Since this is a checkout stand, I used pages from “Ropps’s New Calculator” … which seems to have tons of tables to calculate stuff like the cost of grain and such, which seemed appropriate somehow.

check it out closeup

When all is said and done, now it looks like this.

check it out 1Isn’t it lovely.  It’s very possible that we will have the most fabulous check out stand at Junk Bonanza!  Well … OK … I suspect the competition will be fierce, so maybe not.  But we’ll definitely hold our own.

P.S.  You may have noticed my painted books peeking out of the edge of that last photo.  I’ve done some in Trophy and some in Eulalie’s Sky for Junk Bonanza.

grey books

13 thoughts on “check it out.

    1. Thanks! I mainly get my stencils online either on Etsy or from Maison de Stencils. I often use just parts of a larger stencil on stuff. The 1902 on this piece is part of a bigger ‘grain sack’ style stencil. The French address on the black writing desk I posted about here was also just part of a bigger stencil.


    1. Junk Bonanaza is held at Canterbury Park in Shakopee, MN twice a year. The spring show is coming up, Apr 10 -12. Here is how they describe it themselves:

      The twice-a-year Bonanza provides a gathering spot for purveyors and shoppers of vintage finds, beautiful antiques, and one-of-a-kind and artisan-repurposed pieces. The three-day, indoor events each offer best-of shopping experiences and a day of hourly cash coupon giveaways, drawings and special appearances.

      Yep … it’s all that and a bag of chips. Check out their blog. If you have some time to spend, you can go in and read various spotlights on vendors and see lots of pics.

      Admission is $9, and it is definitely worth it!


    1. Thanks Darrielle! I saw that we were both picked as MMS favorites this week! Congrats to you, loved your little stool. I haven’t tried the French Enamel yet, but one of these days …


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