Antique Secretary Desk- Before and After

This was a custom piece I upcycled for a friend and I absolutely love the way it turned out.  I used Maison Blanche chalk paint to redo this antique secretary desk.


This unique piece came in two separate parts, so it was easy to take apart and paint.  I knew immediately this piece had potential!  The owner found it on craig’s list and brought it straight over.  It was in great condition!


One huge benefit to chalk paint is that you don’t have to sand the piece down before you paint!  I cleaned it really good, but did NOT sand at all before painting.  After one coat of chalk paint, it had quite a bit of coverage.


After one more coat of paint, it was ready to be distressed.  Here’s a picture of right after I started to rough it up!


Usually I would sand by hand, but this paint was a little thicker than the brand of chalk paint I usually use and it took forever to get through the layers of paint.  My electric sander was a more efficient tool for this project!


I really wanted the wood to show through because this gal also owns another piece I did and it needed to match.

 Remember this little guy?  Won’t they coordinate so well together? IMG_0927

This picture was taken in the middle of applying a soft wax:

antique secretary desk6

You can visibly see the areas that need a second coat of wax.  I put two coats of wax on it over the course of a couple days.  The wax makes all the difference in the texture of the piece.



This will look perfect in any home, plus it has so much storage!


Originally she wanted to order new hardware but I talked her into letting me put the original hardware back on because it adds so much character.  What do you think?



    • says

      Hey Ashley! I used the CeCe Caldwell Clear Wax for this project. CeCe Caldwell is usually the brand of paint I use, but the wax worked well with the Maison Blanche paint as well. The wax protects the surface from nicks and gives it a smooth look with a little shine. Chalk paint leaves a very porous surface so you want to seal it with wax! I rub it on with a lint free cloth. Less is more with wax!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *