another chippy farmhouse cupboard.


I was surfing craigslist just before Christmas looking for a large cupboard.  I have an idea in my head for a piece for my q branch (a.k.a. my study).  It’s one of those ideas … you know, the ones where you can picture exactly what you want in your head but trying to find it is like searching for a needle in a haystack.  But every once in a while, I search for ‘cupboard’ or ‘cabinet’ on craigslist on the off chance I’ll find it and it will be less than $1,000.

I am still searching for that large cabinet, but luck was on my side on this particular day because I did find this …


I call this a jelly cupboard.  I’m not sure if that is exactly right, but I’m going with it.

I almost never see these on craigslist.  When I do see them, they are usually priced way out of my budget.  This particular item had only been posted for about an hour and the price was not fantastic, but OK.  So I totally snatched it up!

Milk paint was a no-brainer for this piece.  I wanted a chippy (be careful what you wish for), been in the barn for 75 years, held all of the homemade jelly, farmhouse look.

I debated color.  Black would have been easy.  I could have probably gotten away with one coat, possibly needing two.  White might have been most marketable, everyone loves white, right?  But what I really wanted to go with was aqua.  You all know it’s my favorite.  And Homestead House had sent me that free sample of their Laurentien milk paint.  I just couldn’t resist.  I don’t plan to keep this cabinet, but my thinking was this:  if no one buys it, I will just have to find a spot for it.  Or repaint it white.

Well, as I hinted, be careful what you wish for when it comes to chippy.  I mixed up my paint and while the pigments were getting good and dissolved, I sanded the cabinet lightly and then wiped it down with a damp cloth.  I didn’t want to over-sand, because as I mentioned, I wanted a chippy look.

I painted on my first coat of paint and then went downstairs to check on my laundry.  Then I washed some dishes.  Then I walked back into the room where I paint and out of the corner of my eye I saw this …

Then I panicked.  I did not see this coming.  That paint is not sticking at all.

Then I reminded myself that I have been here before.  No need to panic.

I got out the sandpaper and as I suspected would happen, sanding took off nearly all of the paint.  OK, no problem.  I vacuumed away the dust, wiped it down and then added a coat of Miss Mustard Seeds’ Tough Coat Sealer.

Take that you chippy cupboard!

Once the sealer was dry, I added a fresh coat of paint.  As it dried, I noticed that it was still chipping quite a bit.  This cupboard really wanted to be chippy.  By this point it was getting late.  I decided to just go ahead and add another coat of paint and go to bed.  But as fate would have it, I ran out of paint with just one side left to finish.

The next day I sent an email off to Jennylyn at Homestead House and asked if they could please send me just one more package of Laurentien, stat.

I spent the next week looking at the cupboard ‘as is’.  Except for that one side that still needed another coat of paint, I realized that I really loved the way the cabinet looked.  My own rooster cupboard is just as chippy and judging by how often it gets pinned on pinterest, I think there are others out there who love that look too (not you Betty from Ontario, I know this is not your cup of tea).

When the paint arrived I mixed up a small batch and painted that last remaining side.

And now it looks like this …


I left the inside of the cupboard alone.  Personally I like how rustic it is.



And I love this little wooden latch that can be used to keep the left side door closed.


The cupboard will likely continue to chip a little over time.  Although I sanded and vacuumed and got as much off as I could, I didn’t seal it.  I have found with other super chippy pieces that they continue to chip unless you seal them with the Tough Coat Sealer.  But that’s OK with me.  I like pieces that wear over time.


I debated removing the door insets and replacing them with screening, which would be quite easy to do.  I think that would be a really awesome look for this piece.  Something similar to this photo from pinterest …


If I was keeping it I think I would definitely do that, but I’m not keeping this cupboard.  I am selling it (check my available for local sale tab to see if it is still available).  So … I thought I’d see if I get any takers with this look first.

And who knows?  If it doesn’t sell I can always go back to the drawing board and paint it white.

31 thoughts on “another chippy farmhouse cupboard.

    1. I just saw your cupboard yesterday! I was surfing around on your blog looking for more tiny dressers 😉 What drew me in to that post was your display of Swiss chalet music boxes. I had the one that is second from the left when I was growing up. In fact, I had a whole collection of various music boxes. I think that might be where my ‘non-collecting’ began 😉 Anyway, I would have never thought to display them for Christmas, but they look absolutely adorable with all of the trees and that fabulous little wooden Santa.


  1. Jelly cabinet looks great, I love the color! On another note, I was watching HGTV’s Flea Market Flip yesterday and had the thought that you and your sister should go on that show! Do you ever watch Flea market Flip? I love it!


  2. “Not you Betty” 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂
    LOVE the cupboard!!! Beautiful job- perfect amount of chippiness!!


  3. I didn’t expect to love this piece. I’m not a big fan of chippiness, and I really love tiger oak and hate to see it painted over. But this little cupboard turned out just exactly right. The chipping reveals my beloved wood grain, and the paint gives the impression that there’s a history–a story to be told.


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