Grunt Labor has a man cave.
Did you know that?
But really, its only been his man cave for the past three months or so.
Prior to that, it was the dumping ground for yard sale items, the kid’s toys, an outdated computer, and just crap in general.
Said crap was moved elsewhere (a.k.a. shoved in the attic) and he is finally getting the room that he deserves.
That he deserved a long time ago.
His words to me were, “Just do your thing.” when asked what he wanted done to the space.
So I’m doing my thang.
Because I like to do my thang, rather than my thing.
And I started with this vintage radio turned bar cabinet.
Disclosure: This post was a collaboration with Velvet Finishes. All opinions and love of rat’s nests infested pieces are 100% mine. This post contains affiliate links for your shopping convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.
This won’t be shocking to you I’m sure, but this piece was my great grandfather’s.
I know, well as we all know, the motto in my family seems to be, “Just give the stuff no one wants to Jenna. She’s a hoarder.”
I actually got this piece eight or so years ago in my former life. When Grunt Labor and I moved in together, there wasn’t enough room for all my furniture so I left it with my dad.
So I guess technically, I’m an indian giver since I wanted it back?
Dad wasn’t using it though, it was in a storage shed.
Where rats also live.
I know this because there were multiple rat’s nests in this piece.
I can hear you through my computer.
“First she kills snakes, now she’s taking home rat’s nests, God help the poor girl, all the cheap beer has finally gotten to her.”
I gave it a thorough cleaning, so don’t worry.
Here’s what I started with:
The top two photos are of the front of the piece. The bottom left door didn’t open – it was glued shut and was made like this.
And I’m sure you can see the break in the right door.
And that’s the back. There wasn’t a back for the bottom left cabinet either.
And one of the drawers…
Well, it wasn’t such a drawer anymore. My dad said it used to hold a record player. It had a piece of cardboard for the bottom that was rotted out.
Fun times, y’all. Fun times.
I started with the doors. First, I took off the one that was broken. I removed both of their backings and just left them out – they were gross. On the broken door, I glued it together and clamped it where needed.
After it dried, there was still a little chunk of wood missing in the design. I filled it with two coats of wood filler and then sanded it smooth.
I pried off the door that was glued shut, which wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be.
I also pulled out the actual radio and cut out a thin square piece of plywood to be the backing on the radio where there wasn’t one before.
And then we were finally ready for paint.
I will say that there was a small part of me that didn’t want to paint this piece – once upon a time, it had a beautiful glossy stain. It still looked ok far away, but closer up, it was covered in scratches.
Since it did have a glossy finish, I primed it first with Ready and then painted it with Velvet Finishes Modern.
To apply the Ready, you just spray it on your piece, let it sit for a minute, then wipe it down with a paper towel. Repeat until the shine is gone from your piece.
Yea, I’m not even kidding. Most of the time you don’t even need a primer with this paint, but for glossy surfaces its recommended.
After the Ready was dry, I spray painted the trim on the drawers and doors gold and let it dry.
Next, I painted Modern over the piece.
Normally, I would use my paint sprayer on this type of makeover, but it was unusually cold here last week. I just didn’t want to freeze my tail off with my garage door opened for ventilation. I was worried about seeing a lot of the brush strokes, but you can’t see that many at all.
It took three coats of Modern to do this piece. I had a full quart to begin with and used about half of it. The paint had pretty good coverage.
Since this piece is going to be used as a bar of sorts, I wanted to make sure it could stand up to drinks and spills. So, I gave it a coat of Protect after the paint dried.
Protect is a polyurethane that is non-yellowing. All you do is brush on a thin coat.
And it is sitting pretty in the man cave now.
I love the gold with the Modern blue. Imagine that.
I kept the piece’s original hardware and restored it with Bar Keeper’s Friend.
What do you think of the new bar cabinet and its bold hue?
Love a good furniture makeover? See these then…
11 Colorful Furniture Makeovers – glorious, glorious color.
Here’s my complete guide to painting furniture – any question you’ve ever had, answered.
And see all my furniture makeovers right here.
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