I suspect that unless you are homeschooling your kids, most of you would not have looked twice at the craigslist ad for these vintage desks.
But the fact that they were a pair made me immediately think ‘nightstands’. Plus I was kind of digging their mid-century vibe. If you look at the base, you can see that the height is adjustable, so I knew I could raise them up a bit to be the right height for next to the bed. So one recent Friday evening date night, Mr. Q and I drove out to one of my fave Minneapolis neighborhoods, Linden Hills, to pick these up.
I debated between two different concepts for them. I thought about going ‘industrial steampunk’ by painting them black, ‘dipping’ the legs in copper paint and stenciling some numbers somewhere. But in the end I decided to play up their mid-century look by painting the metal aqua and leaving the blonde tops as is. They were in really good condition, so that seemed like a no-brainer.
I started by adjusting those legs. That ended up being the most difficult part of this project. Those bolts had obviously not been loosened in a very long time. Luckily Mr. Q was able to use his brute strength to get the job done. Then I painted the base of each table in Fusion’s Laurentien. I absolutely love this color and am just finishing off my 3rd can of it. I’m going to have to stock up on more!
Once the paint was dry I sanded the edges a little to add some character, but I still felt like the paint job looked a little too new. So although you don’t have to use a top coat with Fusion paint, I opted to wax these. I started with a coat of Miss Mustard Seed’s furniture wax (clear). The purpose of an initial coat of clear wax is to make the application of the next coat of dark wax easier to manipulate. If you’ve ever tried using dark wax directly on a lighter paint color and it looked really streaky and you weren’t able to blend it as much as you’d like, that’s because you needed a base coat of clear wax first.
I added some rub-on numbers to the pencil tray just to add a little whimsy.
I staged some of my photos with a typewriter and of course you could use these as desks.
But really, they are just too cool for school. I would use them as nightstands. I just don’t have a good spot for taking photos of them next to a bed. So if you are opposed to cookie cutter furniture and prefer unique one of a kind pieces, these are perfect for you.
This Tokyo map paper had the perfect colors to match the desks. There is something about that combination of aqua and french vanilla that I just love.
How would you use these desks?