April 22, 2013

Shabby Chic Hutch reveal & how to achieve a RUSTIC wood look

Hey there! I final got around to finishing up my shabby chic cabinet base that I scored at Fancy Flea here in Florida a few weeks back. Here's a before:

I loved the character and shabbiness of the piece. I'm not usually a huge fan of a lot of distressing and choppiness, etc because I'm not a total shabby chic freak but I adore this cabinet. I believe it was the base to a beautiful hutch at one time. But to me, it felt unfinished. It needed some type of contrast. Me, contrast? What. Yes. So, I knew what I wanted to do immediately. Something I've been putting off forever trying... Steel wool and vinegar along with a few methods of my own!



I choose to do a planked wooden top. And I used a couple of methods to achieve the look and stain color on the top. It is a mix of steel wool & vinegar along with American Walnut from Rust-oleum. You can find it at most hardware stores. I got mine at Lowe's and love their stains! They are wonderful to work with, have loads of colors and stains to choose from and their products are fantastic all around! I also have "pinned" this recipe to try for sometime, steel wool and vinegar. From the reviews I've read and the research I've done, both mixed together in a mason jar will oxidize into a nasty looking liquid the longer it sits. After you brush onto wood, it gives you a perfect rustic, worn, aged look. Perfect. Exactly what I was looking for. I'll have to do another post with a HOW TO use the steel wool & vinegar and how to achieve the look with just that. 

I kept going back and forth between wanting a top that was just one piece hunk of wood or to plank the top. I wanted something that would be original and just improve the look of this old piece so I decided to buy a few 1x6's at my local Lowe's Home Improvement. I gave them all a nice sanding before I measured them out on my top. I cut them to size with under an inch hanging on either size and used old nails to secure the top. I choose nails instead of screws because I felt it would look be original this way. As you may have noticed from the before and after, I also updated the hardware. I didn't think that the hardware it had on it was true to its character so to Hobby Lobby I went. I found this amazing pulls that were rustic, elegant and vintage look for a steal of a deal with Hobby Lobby's sales they rotate!

Once I had the top secured, I first stained with an old cut up tee shirt. I let the first coat of stain dry for 24 hours and then came back to it the next day. It was pretty but I wanted more of a rustic, unplanned look so I got out my electric sander. I sanded different parts of the top but not all. I varied locations and hit the edges well. I think took my steel wool & vinegar mixture that had been sitting for about 4-5 days and wiped over the sanded parts of wood. After about 30 minutes, I got a mixture that was a very warm wood color with darker points that I LOVED. It was darker in all the places that I wanted it to be, on the edges and in all the imperfections. Everything else was a nice and warm American Walnut color. I then sealed with {2 or 3} coats of poly. 

I just adore this little cabinet. It has ample storage in it, having 6 total shelves that can hold plates, etc. And two VERY roomy drawers for napkins, silverware, whatever your heart desires. My heart desires that my dog leashes stay in there so I don't loose them ;-)

Someone had also asked a bit ago where I keep all of my appliances in my kitchen. The answer to that is that we were blessed with finding a rental where I could hide all of my appliances but I do have them! Just out of site ;) And another question I got following that one was where do I keep all of my utensil for cooking or is there a way to make that cute. Well, I happen to think my little vignette on my stove is cute AND functional which is the BEST. I purchased this utensil holder at TJMAXX for about $6.00 and it even has a gold plate on the front that says utensils. How adorable right? I primarily use wooden spoons so I like to have them already out and easily within reach. I also set the utensil holder a top of my bread board that I purchased from Target on clearance. I LOVE IT. I was going to purchase a few and hang them under the cabinets or prompt them up against the backsplash (or lack there of.) I actually like it on the stove though, complete with my dachshund statue from Hobby Lobby.

So, let's recap. Here's a...



What do you think of this simple little makeover that I did for under $15 to my little shabby cabinet? Do you think it looks better than it did before? Have you ever tried steel wool & vinegar? I would love to hear from you! And if you would like to PIN this image to Pinterest, you can find the "PIN IT" button at the top of this post! Thank you for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed this post!

Linking up to Miss. Mustard Seed's Furniture Feature Fridays here.



  1. I love this. It is such a difference and you did such a great job. Thank you so much!

  2. Looks great! I just love that little shab cab!

    1. Thanks Pineapple Ave! I am obsessed with it as well!

  3. Greetings! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a collection of volunteers and
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  4. LOVE what you did to this piece! It looks fabulous!

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  6. Just found your blog via miss mustard seed and fff. I attended the fancy flea for this first time this year. It was awesome. This piece is amazing. You are so talented!

    1. It was awesome! I loved it! And it was my first time too! I hope to maybe have a booth there in November, we will see.... Thank you so much!

  7. Such a beautiful and truly shabby chic piece. At first, I didn't see the difference and I was like, "YES! She left it alone and didn't paint it!" Then, I realized the beautiful new top. (My eyes went straight to the chipped paint first!...sorry.) What a great find and top just makes it even more lovely. (Found you via Miss Mustard Seed.)

    1. Thank you! I think it is beautiful as is so I'm happy you love it too! Thank you for stopping by and I am SO glad that you are here!

  8. Love it! I don't know if you saw but the before is one of the projects I pinned onto my Pinterest board which I linked to in my FFF guest post for MMS! It's a GORGEOUS piece of furniture. The new top is the icing the cake.

    1. Hi! Thank you so much! That was very sweet of you, I'm going to take a look now! I am loving it too! I usually can't stop staring at it! And I think it definitely needed the top! Thank you so much for stopping by!

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  13. You just can't recreate some looks. I, too, do not usually go for the heavily distressed but I agree with you. This piece is perfect. I love it! Great job on the top.

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