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Up-Cycled Glass Table

by Amy Bowerman

My favorite kind of art to make is an altered up-cycled project.  I am known to cruise the streets during junk week in search of wayward items in need of some love.  My studio is filled with “saved” NOT hoarded items( I hate that word and fear it for I do not want to wind up on that awful A&E show).  I am a rescuer of items that have yet to prove their usefulness….which they all eventually do.  Creating something new out of old stuff?  It doesn’t get any better than that!  You know what they say  “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”   I consider myself a treasure hunter as I hunt for trash that I can turn into something to treasure.  The following is a story of my most recent “Treasure Hunt”:

A friend of mine owns a rental property which unfortunately was inhabited by a REALLY bad tenant who left the property a complete mess.  In addition to two truckloads of trash the tenant also left this glass table.

up-cycling

One man’s trash….

Most people would see a rusty old piece of junk and send this table to the darkest depths of the town dump.  That was exactly where this diamond in the rough was going to end up had I not stepped in and rescued it.  I love up-cycling old worn out furniture.  With a little paint and a lot of TLC you can breathe new life into something old and make it new.    I have spent the past week reviving it ….are you ready for the transformation reveal?

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Another (wo)man’s treasure

Ta-Da!!  I couldn’t be more pleased with how this up-cycling project came out!  I had so much fun refinishing this glass table and making it new…not to mention all the fun techniques and mediums I got to play with especially my new-found favorite Copic markers!  I was finally able to get a decent amount of Copic colors this past weekend thanks to a 45% off (your entire marker purchase!!) coupon at Michael’s.

butterfly illustration

My Pet Butterfly…Immortalized

This is an illustration I did of our pet butterfly Spot….he is still coming around daily except when it rains…which messes with his flight patterns :)  If you haven’t heard the story of Spot check out this post about him.  Spot was colored with Copics on heavy gloss cardstock.  I sealed him with acrylic spray, cut him out and adhered to the back of the glass with Decoupage Medium.  Don’t mind the eyelashes…he’s in touch with his feminine side.

plucking daisy illustration

Plucking Daisy Illustration

This is my signature “Plucking Daisy” illustration.  I attempted to re-create it and color it with Copics  but  I didn’t have enough colors to get all the shades I had in the original.  The original piece was colored with Prismacolor markers.  I suppose this table represents my old and new beloved medium…markers!

The “grass” part was stamped with Stampers Anonymous stamps in Ranger Watermark Resist ink and embossed.  I had planned to stamp and emboss all over the glass but it took too long to melt the embossing powder, I burnt myself on the hot glass, and lifting the heavy glass to dump off the excess powder was beyond tedious.  After embossing the grass I had had enough and decided to move on.

up-cycling

Masking

I wanted the illustrations to be on the underside of the glass to prevent them from getting damaged.  I was planning to color the glass so to keep the sections where I wanted the illustrations free of ink I created masks for them with tracing paper.

Alcohol inks from the brights collection Sailboat Blue, Stream and Citrus (for the grass) were used to color the underside of the glass.  Once the ink was dry I dabbed on sporadic dots of silver and gold Metallic Mixatives over the blue stained glass.

As I was looking at it I grew more and more disappointed that my embossing on glass attempt had failed.  I had really wanted to add some stars and retro circle stamps to punch it up a bit.  As I was shuffling things around on my craft table I knocked a bottle of Alcohol Blending Solution and the Grunge Cirque stamps to the floor.   I picked them up and that’s when I had the “Ah ha moment” to use the blending solution to stamp!

An old sponge was used to make a makeshift stamp pad.  It’s tough to see in the photo but it looks really cool in person I swear…

up cycling

Stamping with Alcohol Blending Solution

I know it’s faint but there are retro grunge circles on the left and a grunge star on the right.  Here is a shot of the finished glass tabletop.

up cycling

Altered Glass

Believe it or not  thanks to the alcohol inks the glass is still semi-translucent.  Once the ink was dry and the illustrations had been properly sealed I used Krylon Crystal Flat spray paint to seal the alcohol ink.

Now on to the table part…

up cycling

Copic Markers on Metal

It took more than a few pieces of 80 grit sand paper to remove the rust and peeling paint from this bad boy.  Once I had it sanded as best I could it was spray painted with Rustoleum Textured White.  I anticipated needing more than one coat of paint and wanted a little tooth to give the second layer of paint some staying power.  Rustoleum Egg shell white was used for the second coat.  I really liked the original color of the table and wanted to stick with it.

I added pops of color to the flowers and vines with Copic markers (works on metal!  Woo hoo….endless possibiliities ahead!!).  The color scheme for the flowers were inspired by this gorgeous lily I photographed while in Rhode Island last week.

lily

Rhode Island Lily

I’m not going to lie I love stripes.  It wouldn’t surprise me at all if I was once a Zebra.  I’ve been hanging onto some Krylon Black Crackle finish paint waiting for the right opportunity to use it.  The legs of the table were just begging to be festooned with jazzy stripes…who am I to deny such simple wishes?

up cycling

Yipes Stripes!

The legs look purple-y because they were sprayed with my latest obsession… Krylon Pearl spray paint.  I seriously LOVE this stuff it gives such a lovely sheen.  I’ve been painting everything with it including an altered stool and an altered dresser.    My inspiration for the legs came from this funky street lamp I found in Rhode Island while walking to the beach.

street lamp

Greetings from Rhode Island!

I think this up-cycled table makes a lovely addition to the garden don’t you?   It cost me nothing more than two cans of spray paint.  A small price to pay for the reward of breathing new life into something once old, unwanted and ugly and making it beautiful again :)

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A new lease on life

Here are some links to some more up-cycled projects if you want to check them out:

Butterfly Stool

Vintage Comic Book Desk

Comic Book Flower Pot

Mario Party Games

Fish Mural Fence

Art Journal Made from old magazines and books

 

Thanks for stopping by today I appreciate your visits and comments :)

Hope you have the chance to alter something old and make it new….a little love goes a looooong way!

Amy*

 

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lynne Phelps August 30, 2011 at 12:57 am

This is fantastic! This is not just up-cycled, this is FAB-cycled! Love all the techniques, love the underpainted glass, and so glad to know about the decoupage medium! And you know how I love Copics; welcome to the Borg, you have been assimilated. . . maybe I’m showing my age with that one, lol! I sure hope you make the DT, your work is PERFECT for that!

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2 Dee Halsema August 28, 2011 at 9:31 am

I am in absolute AWE of your beautiful work!! AMAZING!!! Your talent is astounding!! Thank you so very much for sharing!!! Keep up the wonderful work!!

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3 Karen August 28, 2011 at 4:58 am

That’s a fantastic upcycle and a wonderful and original piece of garden art. Well done for spotting the potential!

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4 Victoria Sturdevant August 27, 2011 at 2:02 pm

Fabulous!

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5 Connie August 27, 2011 at 12:51 pm

Beautiful work! You have saved yet another piece of furniture from the landfill!

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6 Angi August 26, 2011 at 10:31 pm

Absolutely amazing Amy. And I love that you call it “saved” items instead of “hoarded items”. :)
The details of your table are beautiful. I love the colors and the artistic feel to the finished product.

Thanks so much for auditioning for the new LESSology blog. :)

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7 yyam August 26, 2011 at 7:48 pm

Wow! What an amazing project Amy! I lovelovelove what you did! You’ve certainly given the weathered piece a new lease of life! I’m very impressed with the techniques you used and the finished product!

Thanks so much for trying out for the LESSology design team! :)

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8 Lynne Armstrong August 26, 2011 at 6:11 pm

WOW, WOW, WOW Amy, this is totally amazing!!! I absolutely LOVE IT! What a fabulous project, I’d never have thought of using Copics on metal…well done :) Thanks so much for playing along with us at The Outlawz this week. Can’t wait to see your next project :)

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