Sprucin’ up my organizers.

As you might have noticed, my craft room, though straightened, is still not very NEAT. So I’m trying to make it NEATER. That means corralling all of my paper goods into attractive storage solutions. I adore vintage postcards and greeting cards and have quite a collection. Of course, they’re SUPPOSED to be used for various projects but I haven’t quite gotten around to putting those projects together yet. Strange, because I’m usually so proactive about these things.

I find metal file cabinets pretty often on my thrift travels, but they’re just so unattractive. So this weekend I tried to spruce one that I picked up some time ago for $4.99. I know the best method to paint this would be spray paint — despite my pathetic spray painting skills — but alas, it is too cold here in chilly Chicago to break out the spray paint. So I turned to Rustoleum brush-on paint instead.

I started by cleaning the files and taping off the metal handle and label thingy. It would have been better to take that off all together but I couldn’t figure out how to get if off without damaging it. I also taped off the edges of the drawer because I figured that pushing them in over and over again would scrape the paint off.

I primed it first with this. It took two coats, and I let it dry 24 hours in between coats, as it recommended. Dudes, this stuff is STRONG. It is not a latex paint, and it smells like lighter fluid. I wobbled a bit after putting on the first coat. Use this outside if you can but at least turn on fans and open all windows!

Then I painted with this. Aqua! I couldn’t resist. This is a multi-purpose paint — metal is just one of the surfaces it can be used on. I would have rather used one specifically for metal, but those didn’t come in any groovy colors like this. I used two coats. I thought maybe using a foam brush or foam roller would leave a smoother coat, but I tried both, and neither worked — they left bubbles. So I used a brush, and I have to say, by the second coat, it looked pretty smooth!

It’s okay for what I need it for, and will definitely look a little more exciting than just putting the gray file cabinet in the craft room, but I think spray paint is the way to go on metal. Although, I have to say, the finish is WAY durable. I thought it would scratch easily but I’ve actually TRIED to scratch is and can’t. I don’t like the way the edges of the drawer look when I pull them out, and if I had known the finish would be so durable, I would have gone ahead and painted them as well.

I have a typewriter table I want to paint and I think I’d better wait until spring and use spray paint on it.

January 21, 2010 - 10:00 pm

janie hightower That looks so much nicer than the grey. You did a great job.