Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Headboard Headway

Amidst several distractions, I’ve managed to make some progress on my Craigslist headboard. (Read about how it all began here.)

I have been looking for something to smooth over these grooves in the wood grain that were still showing through, even after I applied two coats of primer:

I tried using a water-based wood filler made by Elmer’s. I heard wood filler can be tricky to use but I never had an occasion to try it prior to this project.  Sadly, my first foray into wood filling didn’t go well. I spread the wood filler into the grooves with a putty knife and let it set/dry for 24 hours. Then, when it was dry, I attempted to sand it smooth, but quickly realized it hadn’t permanently adhered to the headboard like I expected it would. In fact, with some elbow grease and a wet rag, I was able to wipe off all the wood filler. Yuck, it was so annoying.

Next, in my second attempt to diminish the appearance of the grooves, I sanded the headboard with coarse grade 60 sandpaper and put on two more coats of primer. This kinda worked! The grooves aren’t entirely smoothed over, but they are a lot less pronounced than they were before, see here:

(In hindsight, I probably should have used regular ol’ spackle to fill the grooves. Jack, thanks for the tip, I wish I had read it sooner!)

Now, for the top coat, I chose “Pure White” from Martha Stewart’s line of paints. You may or may not be surprised to find out that Martha’s got a lot of whites to choose from. Here’s a little chart I made of the different white paint colors I was deciding between:

Since my headboard is a relatively small paint project, (compared to say, painting a whole room) I just bought two little sample jars of the Pure White paint. These little cuties were less than $3 each at Home Depot- way cheaper than if I had to buy a gallon or even a pint of paint.

FYI- Home Depot also sells disposable paint trays for lazy painters like me who hate cleaning up when we’re done painting- but I’ve discovered that for free I can make a make a disposable paint tray by covering a dinner plate with aluminum foil. Taa daa:

Last night I painted the headboard with two coats of Pure White- except for the bedposts, which only got one coat each because it was late, and I was tired. Here's how my headboard looked this morning:

This weekend I’m going to give the bedposts their second coat, lightly sand the entire thing one last time, and then apply some polyurethane to make it really shine.

Check back on Monday, I promise to have pictures of my headboard, finally complete!

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