I’ve been after a desk for a good while now, but was really struggling to find anything in my price range. I finally did though! I found this desk on the side of the road, so it was free, my favourite thing for anything to be. It was in bad shape, so it’s taken some work, but here’s what I started with!
Pretty cool, but definitely not my style or what I was looking for. The top was soft and pretty gross from being out in the rain, so that was the very first thing that needed to go. I was sad to lose the extra storage, but I like to really spread out when I work, so I knew a large, flat top would work best for me anyway.
I got my brother to do the hard bit for me, which was cutting the new top out of some spare wood my mum had laying around. His circular saw scares the shit out of me, and I’m not great at cutting straight lines either, so his help was much appreciated. Then he used nails to attach it to the legs, which I totally could have done, but he just started doing it, so I left him to it. I did sand and stain the top myself though.
I did want to paint it a lovely deep blue, but when I opened the pot, it had dried into a brick, so I was super lucky my brother had a similar coloured stain laying around. It’s a bit cooler than I intended, but I think it works better with the silver of the legs.
It’s difficult to tell in pictures, but when I varnished it, it lifted some of the stain. This turned out to be another happy accident, because it made the wood grain stand out more, and gives it a sort of washed look, which I again love.
And that’s how, for £0, I got the perfect desk! We also added a little extra length to the back, so it’s flush against my wall rather than the skirting board. That’s the part of upcycling I really love, you can make it exactly how you want it, with a bit of pure planning and some lucky mistakes.
This only took about 6 hours to do, and most of that was waiting for it to dry between layers of stain or varnish. There’s no need to spend lots of money on the perfect furniture, when you can create exactly what you want with just a bit of hard work. Obviously I’m also super lucky to have family members willing to help, and loan their DIY supplies, but even if I’d had to buy everything, I think it’d probably have cost me less than £20.
So, that’s the desk I’ll be typing at you from, from now on!