In August of this year we were very pleased to be asked to be part of the “UpCycle Challenge.” The UpCycle Challenge is an event that raises money for Habitat for Humanity. We were all given a  small allowance to be used at three of the Re-Use stores in Toronto. We could choose either functional or make an art piece from a door/doors. We chose to do the re-purposed functional piece of furniture.  With my daughter Lauren moving into her first home, I was inspired to make something that she might use in her own home. (Sorry Lauren, its going to auction!) We chose to make a “Portable Studio.” This same concept can be a “Portable Bar,” or even a ‘Mini Office.” See our drawings below.

Portable studio inside

We purchased a solid wood panel door. We were lucky it didn’t have a handle hole cut out yet. We also purchased two louvered doors. The other materials we purchased were lumber, hinges, wheels and some door stops for stability. The little containers we purchased at Ikea and then asked our wonderful Sherwin Williams store to get us some empty quart cans for our paint brushes, pencils and supplies.

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After we sanded and primed we sprayed a Sherwin Williams color (#6945 Belize) as the first coat.  Then we sprayed (#6941 Nifty Turquoise). Both were in eggshell. After they were thoroughly dried, we distressed and dragged sanding paper with the grain to expose the lighter color underneath. The two beautiful handles we purchased from Anthropology in Oakville.  The containers and paint cans became our storage supply.

Can’t you just imagine rolling this “beauty” up to a sunny window, folding out the desk and sitting on a stool painting the afternoon away. If your not an artist, it could be at the center of your next party, filled with a selection of drinks, umberella’s and straws in your containers and perhaps a menu of the “Special of the Day,” written on the grapefruit green chalkboard!

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Portable Studio After


If you want to see our “Unhinged” project and perhaps make a bid for it at the Auction, go to the National Home Show from October 3rd-6th in the Better Living Centre. Paint It Like New! is also presenting on the main stage on Thursday, October 3rd from Noon-1pm. We will be showing you how to re-purpose old pieces of furniture!!