There’s just something special about hand painted children’s furniture. Whenever I have an opportunity to paint a unique piece that will be used in a baby nursery or child’s playroom, I feel like I’m using the gifts God gave me to the fullest potential. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE painting children’s wall murals, but they eventually get painted over as the child grows. Hand painted children’s furniture, on the other hand, is passed on to the next child or the next generation. Just the thought of that makes my heart happy!
I’ve never actually worked on a brand new piece of furniture, although you can easily buy unfinished furniture and paint it to your liking. Most of the stuff I’ve painted is a hand-me-down or thrift store find that is in need of some TLC. That makes it even more rewarding for me, because I know most young parents are just starting out and can’t afford fine furniture. But with a good sanding, some wood putty, and a few strokes of a paint brush, you can take something inexpensive and turn it into something that will be treasured. Just look at these sweet little rocking chairs and see the transformation.
When it comes to hand painted children’s furniture, one of my all-time favorite projects is the Tea Time play table posted at the top of this blog. I liked it so much, in fact, that I painted another one just like it. (The flowers are slightly different.) This one came with two chairs. I found the set at a garage sale. They were asking $20, but I talked them down to $15. Clearly, I HAVE NO SHAME! But I get an adrenaline rush with every bargain I find. Plus, it makes for a much better story when you tell people what you paid.
If you have a baby coming, and you want to paint some furniture, just do it well before the baby arrives. (At least 2 months before the due date.) You don’t want the smell of paint filling the baby nursery, and paint takes 30 days to cure. So again, the sooner, the better, and that goes especially for cribs, like the one below. Originally, it was a dark wood finish when it belonged to a baby boy, but once the ultrasound confirmed he was getting a baby sister, mom wanted a more shabby chic crib. With no money to buy a new one, I sanded it down, added a wooden applique, and then painted over the entire thing.
As I peruse through my photos, these are amongst the ones that bring me great joy. By hand painting children’s furniture, in a small way, I’ve helped set the stage for a precious and all-too-brief period in a child’s life.