The Pink Hammer Blog


Before & after; Desk transformation

“No great artist ever sees things as they really are. If he did, he would cease to be an artist.” ~ Oscar Wilde

My 9 year old son [R] has been asking me for a desk for his room for about a year now. I finally decided now was the perfect time to grant his request. Now, I could have went out and purchased a brand new desk for hundreds of dollars, but that would defeat the purpose of my budget friendly and original home design style.

I picked up a used, normal-looking desk from Hope Gospel Mission Bargain Center in Eau Claire, Wisconsin for about $25.00.

The desk has deep drawers and lots of space on top for him to work on-whatever it is 9 year old boys work on. (Think Legos, drawing, puzzles, games, etc)

Do you see any potential in this desk? I have been blessed with eyes that see beyond what an object is-and can see the shape and size of something and be able to picture the ways it could be upcycled , changed, and used in unique ways.

Here are the changes I made to the desk to make it original and unique for my sons bedroom.

First, I washed the entire desk down, inside and out to remove any dirt and dust, and removed all of the hardware (knobs + drawer pulls).

Next I primed the entire piece, front, back, inside, out, drawers and all with Zinsser primer.

After waiting [very impatiently] for the primer to dry, it was time for the first coat of color!

I let my son pick out the color at Menards, he chose the shade of ‘Crater Lake’ .

I’m such a messy painter- at least you can’t tell by looking at the finished piece, just by looking at me..when finished! (hah!)



Yep, sometimes..I paint barefoot.


After again, waiting very impatiently for the first coat of paint to dry, I repeated the process 2 more times to ensure I had the desk 100% covered nice and thick to stand up to my sons use. (and of course had to quickly test and see how the new hardware looked)

Next was a stage I wasn’t sure if I would do or not. Aging the piece. Because this piece is so straight-not too much detail and character, I felt aging the piece would give it a more ‘used’ look and character, instead of it looking like it was saying ‘Hey! I was just painted!’ Aging it would give it the character that made it feel like it was making the statement of a historical piece that had been through use, abuse and plenty of long hours of work.

With Minwax Polyshades Stain + Polyurithane in the color ‘Espresso’ Satin, I brushed on the stain, working in sections. Letting the stain + poly dry for just 2-3 minutes, I took a lint free rag, and wipe away the portion of the stain, leaving behind a small amount of stain, choosing to leave more around the edges where most likely the desk would have been touched by the previous owner,etc. I repeated this process 1 more time until it looked just right. IMG_4620wm

Once the desk was 100% dry (I let it dry overnight about 12 hours before touching) I added the new hardware (had to bust out the ol’ drill and make the holes a little bit larger to fit the new knobs) …


…and then added a long vintage license plate on the front drawer to cover the flowery design that my son didn’t like. The license plate was cut down to size with tin snips, and attached to the front drawer by drilling holes in the plate where the knobs were able to be placed through and attach the plate securely.

I thought at this point I was done. But as I opened the drawers to look back at my work, I felt something was missing. It needed a bit more character. I searched high and low online and in stores for a drawer liner that would compliment this piece, and also make my son happy. I had found…nothing. I ended buying just plain black contact paper, set it in the drawer to see how it would look- and just wasn’t feeling it. It still, needed something more. I let the entire desk project sit for a few days and was hoping something would come to me if I walked away from the project for some time.

Then I was in my home office, and was looking at a map I framed of Montana, when it hit me, like a bolt of lightning. I would line his drawers with maps!!! Y E S! He was so very excited when I told him my idea.

After measuring, and cutting the Montana & Minnesota maps to size, I sprayed on spray-on adhesive, and place the maps inside each of the drawers. I finished by spraying Krylon Acrylic coating in clear matte finish on top of each map inside the drawer which will then make the maps water-resistant.




My kids and I went and shopped some antique stores, TJ Maxx, and Ashley Furniture Home Store to get some complimentary items for the top of his desk;


Below is the inside cover of the book ‘Cash boy’ that my son picked out at an antique store-;

IMG_4718wm DSC_5823wm DSC_5850

Lamp purchased at Ashley Furniture on clearance for $18.00 ($40.00 off!) + added a quick coat of brown Rust-Oleum Metallic Accents paint;


…and now my friends, his desk is complete!!!


(Large map window will be featured on a new blog post later in the week)

So, there you have it. Open your eyes to see beyond what an item is, to see how you can change it and make it unique-and completely YOU!

Thanks for reading,



1 Comment

Spring Countdown; 1 day!

1 day until Spring!!!!


Have a beautiful Tuesday, stay warm!!! (Yes I know it’s cold & snowy here in Wisconsin.. but I’m choosing to ignore it!)

Thanks for reading,

Photo by Endless Acres Photography

Leave a comment

Spring Countdown; 2 days!

My goals & dreams are always changing- always growing. Just because I have accomplished one dream or crossed a goal off of my list, doesn’t mean I stop & that I’m done.. it means I add a new dream, a new goal to the list -Always pushing myself for more, I know God has created me for more, to be more, to do more & to (in my own little way) make the world a better place. There is no end of dreams or goals for me, there is always something more.

Let’s love life today! Who is with me?! ♥ 🙂
Life is too short to hate Mondays, it is a new day, a new start to a new week – anything can happen & chances are with the right attitude, it has the possibility of being an amazing day, don’t waste it just because it’s called ‘Monday’ !!:)

Have a beautiful day!
Thanks for reading,

Photo by Endless Acres Photography


Before & after: Dresser transformation

About 2 years ago, I was at local thrift store, for no reason in particular, but to see if I could find any ‘treasures’  when a little white dresser with the most beautiful curves caught my eye.


There she sat on the thrift store floor, sad, lonely and begging for someone to bring her back to life.   I knew- that someone was going to be me.  I was in love.   I immediately bought the dresser and proudly hauled her home in the back of my Jeep.

Right away I replaced the knobs.  2 years have passed, and I finally decided now was the time to give this ol’ dresser a new life!


Here are the changes I made aka the during & after:
*New oil rubbed bronze knobs (From Menards)

*Lined drawers with beautiful patterned shelf liner paper (From TJ Maxx)

*Fresh, new & beautiful paint , called ‘Sunstraw’ (From Menards)

The final transformation:

I am so proud of this particular piece.  I was going to distress the edges, but at the last minute decided not to , I like the clean curved lines to stand out on their own without distressing marks taking away from the simple beauty of this awesome dresser.

This will be my very first ‘The Pink Hammer’ project on display anywhere -other than my own home- and I am so excited to drop it off at The Living Room Coffee House on Cameron Street in Eau Claire, Wisconsin tomorrrow!     It will be on display as a show piece for The Pink Hammer blog, and also for sale!  Yes, that’s right- you can grab yourself a delicious coffee and a treat at The Living Room and also buy a beautiful one of a kind dresser!!! (The very first The Pink Hammer blog project for sale locally!!!!)   THIS ITEM HAS BEEN SOLD.  See more like this for sale at The Living Room, or contact Kelly for a custom project.

I will also soon have photography on display and other unique The Pink Hammer projects for sale at The Living Room Coffee House- stay tuned and stop in there often to see what I  put on display next!

Thanks for reading,

Leave a comment

12 days until Spring! | Spring Countdown

The countdown is on!  Are you ready for Spring?!

I am so ready to do yard work!  To dig my hands into the soil, to walk barefoot in the grass, and sit in the field and let the sun rays shine down on me!   How about you!?  What are your favorite things about Spring?!



(Photo by Endless Acres Photography, this print is available for purchase here; )

Leave a comment

Framed Notes |Tip Tuesday DIY

When decorating my home, I always try to think outside of the box with how I display items.    Whether it be reusing an old ladder as a shelf,  a rake as a wine glass holder, or like todays Tip Tuesday project; a frame to display a note from a loved one.

I think it is so important to let the memories of our loved ones who have passed before us, to live on.   I was cleaning out my file box today and came across a stack of letters from my beautiful Grandma Shirley who passed away November 18, 2009.  The letter was written on an rsvp card to our wedding which she wasn’t able to attend due to her sickness.     The note made me cry and I feel like she really is part of my story- and wanted to display the letter in my office.

First, I found a frame that would show off all of the letter, without cutting any of her writing off.


Next I made my own matte by simply measuring the glass and cutting out a piece of blue constriction paper, taping the letter to the paper, and inserted her letter into the frame.




Then found a place to display her letter where I would be reminded of her daily.


What letter will you frame?!

Thanks for reading,