Thrift to Fab

One of my latest addictions is the local thrift store.  I've been stopping in semi-regularly hunting for deals for my sister-in-law's apartment, and last week I hit the jackpot.  A Broyhill Premier mid-century credenza for a whopping $35.  It had obviously been in a basement for the recent history, but it was still in wonderful condition.  There were a few chips and scratches but certainly NOT a candidate for refinishing- its too beautiful. I'm going to be cruel and make you wait to see the full piece, but I will divulge my secrets. So, what's the best way to breathe life back into a quality thrift store find?

Steel wool is your best friend on a project like this.

First thing I did was remove the handles from the drawers.  Use a fine steel wool to polish off the old finish and hopefully reveal a shiny fresh surface underneath (this won't work with all metals, so try it first on the back of the knob or someplace that won't be easily seen).  In this case, the faux wood grain and the brassy finish both came off with a little elbow grease.

As I was wandering the paint isles of Home Depot looking for the best way to refresh the piece without restaining, I came across exactly what I was looking for.  I picked up a 'wood finish restorer' and it did the trick.  Apply the restorer to another piece of fine steel wool and rub it into the wood.

I would let it sit for a day before using to allow the refinisher to set in.  The change isn't drastic, but it really brightens up the entire piece. Definitely something to keep in mind next time you're perusing vintage furniture.

Check back tomorrow for my results of the Pinterest Challenge Summer Edition!