Kitchen Shelf & DIY Faux Stone

June 24, 2013

A couple of months ago, our iron-weilding friend, Noah, (who made these iron posts!) made us a beautiful iron shelf for the transition area from the kitchen to the dining room and family room. We all have lots of bags – purses, laptop bags, grocery bags, camera bags, etc. But my full-time-working-and-grad-schooling husband has the most bags of all. Our kitchen counter bar area and barstools being the catch-all for the bags was getting a little out of hand, so Mom and I drew up a little sketch for Noah. We love everything he makes, so we basically gave him our measurements and a general idea of what we wanted and let him go to work. Here it is!
I initially thought I’d just get some thin slabs of granite (like our master bedroom nightstands) but that’s like $100 for four little shelves and we didn’t really want to spend that much, so we started brainstorming less expensive and DIY ideas. I remembered seeing Jenny’s DIY Faux Malachite post and loved the technique but didn’t need the green malachite anywhere in my house. Then I saw her Faux Stone DIY post idea and loved the idea of the malachite technique in a neutral palette. Sold! Here’s what we did.

We got one piece of MDF board and asked the nice Home Depot employee to cut it exactly the right size of my shelves. Easy and cheap!

Then I got my sister’s help to figure out what colors we should mix, because she’s an artist and good at this type of thing. We ended up with Behr Interior Semi-gloss enamel in Creme Brulee for the base. And we got two neutral shades of Martha’s metallic paint to mix with the glossy primer for the faux stone. We followed Jenny’s suggestions as far as what glossy/glaze-y things to use and her technique for the brush strokes and such. Read her DIY instructions here. I love the effect! Ours somehow ended up being way more squiggly, but I still love it! 
Anna and I were both painting, but we had very different techniques and brush strokes so we would switch back and forth and layer some of our strokes on top of the other’s. It was fun to bounce back and forth trying to make all four boards somewhat consistent. 

Here’s the finished product! You can see some of the brush strokes of the base color underneath (even though I sanded!) but I don’t mind. I think we felt like we needed to do small strokes because of the size of the shelves (they’re only 19″ x 13.5″), but I kind of wish we’d done them a little bigger.

I definitely keep wanting to make these shelves pretty, but I have to remind myself (and my Mom reminds me) that the original need was for storage! We needed a designated space for bookbags, laptop bags, keys, and phones. This was a great solution to my shelf problem – a cheap and easy material with a little DIY touch. Thanks for the inspiration, Jenny!

Copyright Whitney Curtis 2010-2013

3 thoughts on “Kitchen Shelf & DIY Faux Stone

  1. Danielle

    I absolutely LOVE this idea. A table like that would be perfect for any small space or nook where you need a little something to fill the space. Love that you use it for storage–it still looks beautiful :)


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