Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Vintage Doll Bed Up-Cycle

A couple of months back I found my old doll bed in my parents attic. I remember this bunk style doll bed so clearly but had no idea it was still around.

It brought back such memories of my childhood as I remembered it being an important place for all my dolls. This would be around 1960 or so.

It was in decent shape except for the supporting slats. And other than being a bit dirty, it was otherwise intact. After debating whether to keep it as is or to up-cycle it, I decided it needed a new life.

I chose a light blue chalk paint with a coat of dark wax for a distressed and aged look. Some would argue that it should be kept in it original condition, but just as I have changed since 1960, it needed change too.

So here is how it went:

First I put it in my garage, surveyed it and cleaned it. This is what it originally looked like:

Here is a picture of the supporting slats for the bottom part of the bunk bed:

Unfortunately, the slats for the top portion were broken - really beyond repair. So I carefully measured, then went to Lowes and had two pieces of wood cut to use as supports:

I selected a light blue chalk paint by Americana Decor called "Serene" which I found at Michaels. I also bought a clear and a dark wax. The clear wax is for protection and the dark is to give it a distressed and aged look - I used a flat brush for the blue paint and a round brush for the wax:

After cleaning the bed with a damp soft cloth I applied two coats of the blue chalk paint:

Then I applied a coat of the clear wax followed by a coat of the dark wax. Both the paint and the wax really dry fast, so I did not wait long between coats. I let the blue chalk paint and clear wax dry about 20 minutes between coats. After applying the dark wax I almost immediately rubbed it down with a soft cloth. This removes most of the dark color but leaves just a bit for that vintage aged look I was looking for. Here is what it now looked like:

Now it was ready to move inside the house. And here is what it looks like painted and with the new supporting boards:

I really did not like the look and feel of the raw unpainted wood. So I bought some large pieces of white foam board in the school and office supplies section at Walmart. Then I just cut two pieces to fit over the raw boards. I did not photograph this part but here is a picture of what I'm talking about with white foam board:

Now it just needed mattresses and pillows which I found on Etsy. The seller is Bonita Abernathy at NaNaBeezGifts.  Bonita is excellent - she makes doll and pet bedding as well as wedding favors. Here is the bed with new mattresses and pillows.

The two Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls were mine - I had other dolls that I wish I could find but alas they were not in my parents' attic. But at least I found these two little friends.

Now it just needed some coverlets and pillow cases. Bonita had told me she could make some custom bedding, so I had her make these pretty reversible coverlets, pillow cases for the pillows and some small decorative pillows.  They turned out beautiful as you can see below!

Now all I need is a grand daughter to enjoy this doll bed. Although I don't have any grandchildren yet, I hope to have them one day!