Oh, how I miss thrift stores! There’s nothing like finding a diamond in the rough and turning it into something useful and attractive. Luckily for me, I have a basement full of treasures from the pre-pandemic days. As I’m working on a command center, I decided to make an upcycled mail holder out of a dated wooden box.
This old, forgotten box is probably from the 70’s. It has a hole in the top so it can be attached to the wall. I cleaned it up and got it ready for a coat of paint.
It had a shiny finish, so I gave it a light sanding to give it some tooth. This will allow the paint to better adhere to the wood.
Then I wiped away the dust with a wet paper towel.
I was afraid this piece had the potential for bleed through, which happens when tannins seep through the paint and make it look yellow. As I was planning to paint the box a light color, I decided to give it a coat of Dixie Belle BOSS.
BOSS is a great product to prep items that may have some issues. If you find a piece of furniture that you love but it reeks of cigarette smoke, BOSS will seal the piece before painting and block the odor. It’s a great product!
Once the BOSS was dry (about an hour), I applied two coats of Dixie Belle Chalk Mineral Paint in Manatee Gray. What a difference already!
The final touch was to apply a stencil. I had mesh letter stencils from A Maker’s Studio in my stash, so I spelled out the word MAIL.
These stencils are designed to be used with a washable chalk paste or a permanent gel ink, which I don’t have in my stock. Instead, I used some Dixie Belle paint that had dried into a paste.
I applied the paint, an off white (Drop Cloth) with a plastic spreader. And then…things went wrong.
When I removed the stencils, the paint was very faint in most places. I tried to reapply the paint, but it didn’t help much. So, I went to plan B.
I took a Sharpie and traced over the stencils. It’s not perfect, but I do like the overall look of my upcyled mail holder.
The stencil font reminds me a little of Rae Dunn. You’ve got to see how great the mail holder now looks in my command center!
Thanks for stopping by!
PS…if you love thrift store upcycles like me, check out these projects: