I recently upcycled a hot mess of a vintage vanity by turning it into a pair of gorgeous vintage nightstands. I knew that old vanity needed something - but I was stuck on exactly what? And then along came the new IOD Grisaille Toile Paint Inlay to the rescue.
The IOD Paint Inlays are so brand spanking new, you might not understand how they work. Well, read these instructions and/or watch the video tutorial and your mind will be blown. They are so easy - and amazing.
No time to read now? Pin this project for later.
You can watch the short tutorial by clicking the video below. That will take you to the Serendipity House Youtube channel. There’s a lot of new techniques in this project - and watching new techniques is a great way to learn them. If you prefer to read the directions, keep scrolling and you’ll them below the video.
EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO CREATE YOUR OWN VINTAGE NIGHTSTAND MAKEOVER WITH NEW IOD PAINT INLAYS
Several soft, lint-free cloths
Tissue paper, old newspaper, or tissue paper from Paint Inlay
Exacto Knife and razor blade
HOW TO CREATE NIGHTSTAND MAKEOVER MAGIC!
I’m teaching some new painting techniques in this project. Have you tried:
🖌 Wet Distress
If you know how to do one or two of these painting techniques - you’re going to love learning the one that’s rarer - Frottage. And combining all three in one project is going to blow your mind. So let’s get started.
STEP 1: PREP YOUR PIECE
Yes, my project pieces came from a raggedy old vanity that’s getting a new lease on life as a pair of nightstands. You can use this tutorial to do your own nightstand makeover, tackle a dresser makeover project, or any furniture upcycle.
I prepped my pieces (after they were separated into two nightstands) by painting them in DIY Paint Letterpress Gray and letting that coat dry thoroughly. Next, I added a thin coat of DIY Paint Cowgirl Coral and let that dry.
Now I’m ready to start working with the new IOD Paint Inlay paper. To start, I remove the papers from their package and separate the tissue paper sheets between the paint inlays. Next, I trim the edges of the paper using a ruler and Exacto knife. I’m trimming to fit my project surface.
And that’s it - everything’s prepped!
STEP 2: APPLYING THE PAINT INLAY PAPER
When applying the paint inlays, the painted surface needs to be wet. (Also, Pro-Tip: they work best with chalk or clay-based paints - like DIY Paint.) After the first coat of the Cowgirl Coral was completely dry, I applied a second coat.
While the second coat of the Cowgirl Coral was wet - I began laying the Paint Inlay papers right into it. Lay the paper down with the grid side facing up. I gently smooth the piece in place with my fingers.
With my nightstands, the area I want to be covered by the Grisaille Toile is longer than one sheet of paint inlay, so I apply a second sheet. When placing the second sheet, be careful to match the edges of the design - similar to hanging wallpaper.
Once the papers are in the wet paint and smoothed with my fingers, I spritz the paper completely with water. Then I use the IOD Brayer and roll out the sheets to get them as smooth as possible.
STEP 3: NIGHTSTAND NO. 2
I repeat all the steps above with the second nightstand. A fresh coat of Cowgirl Coral, lay the papers into the wet paint, spritz completely with water, and use the IOD Brayer to roll out wrinkles, smoothing the papers into the paint.
The papers extend across the front of each nightstand. It goes above the drawers on the nightstands, but they don’t cover the bottom front trim.
STEP 4: SEPARATE THE DRAWERS
For this step, I used a razor blade (you can also use an Exacto Knife) to separate the drawers, cutting the paper along their seams. Once this is done, remove the drawers from the nightstands and set them aside to dry.
With the DIY Paint, within an hour or so, the pigment from the paint inlay paper is already embedded into the paint. But you can leave everything at this stage overnight - and even for several days, before moving onto Step 5.
STEP 5: TIME TO PEEL THE PAPER
Before peeling the paint inlay paper off the nightstand drawers, dampen the paper again by spritzing it with water. Then simply lift off the backing paper from the surface. Save the backing paper for another project (yes, there’s enough pigment for one more application.)
You’ll see the Toile design is embedded in the paint. (Pause here to marvel at this new product with a few ooohs and aaahhhs.)
STEP 6: WET DISTRESS TECHNIQUE
This technique will bring the vintage into this nightstand makeover. Using a damp, lint-free cloth, rub back the paint from the edges of the drawers. This lets the Letterpress Gray finish under the Cowgirl Coral peek through.
Once you’re happy with the effect you’ve created, grab the Water Girl Continuous Spray Bottle - but this time, fill it with a mixture of 1:1 water to topcoat. Spray to coat over the paint inlay.
STEP 7: FROTTAGE TECHNIQUE
I struggle with pronouncing this one correctly - but I’ve mastered the technique and I love the textured finish it adds.
I used the tissue paper that came with the Paint Inlays, between the papers themselves. You can also use newspaper, regular tissue paper, or anything you have on hand. The Frottage technique is the process of laying the tissue paper onto a fresh, wet coat of paint then peeling it off again.
Let me explain what I did on these nightstands. With the DIY Paint Letterpress Gray as the bottom layer on the nightstands, I left it exposed on the sides. Now, I add a wash mixture (watered down) using the Cowgirl Coral. I combined half water and half paint into a container.
(My mixture was roughly 1:1 water and paint. But it can be more or less than this ratio, depending on your paint thickness.)
I applied this Cowgirl Coral right over the Letterpress Gray. Once the nightstand side was covered, I grabbed a piece of tissue paper and laid it onto the wet paint. It took two pieces of tissue paper to cover the side completely. Next, I used my hands to smooth the paper down, but didn’t try to remove any folds or wrinkles - they add to the textured effect.
Once the papers are on - take them right off! Just peel the tissue paper from the side of the nightstand. You can see how this adds a little bit of texturized interest to the sides - and let’s some of the gray back into the piece.
STEP 8: FINISHING UP AND TOPCOAT
Time to apply DIY Paint Big Top Topcoat/Sealer to the surface of both nightstands. Once everything is sealed, I always step back to see what I think - if anything - is missing from my pieces.
Most of the time the answer is “it needs some shading with a little DIY Paint Dark + Decrepit Liquid Patina.” I paint the Dark + Decrepit on one section at a time. Then, I wipe it off gently with a damp lint-free cloth. I may repeat this process in an area more than once to get the look I want.
I also take a small paintbrush and add the Dark + Decrepit to the groves on the side panels of the nightstands. This creates a shadowing effect, adding depth.
Once you’re satisfied with all the shading and shadowing of the Dark + Decrepit, it’s time for a final seal with the DIY Paint Big Top Topcoat/Sealer. The final step is to add the knobs on and slide the drawers back into the nightstands. I think they turned out so beautifully!