I absolutely love good, free furniture, especially when it is the right dimensions.
So I have been on the lookout for a cardenza for $200 or less on Facebook Marketplace. If I couldn’t find one in 3 months, I would try building from scratch.
I wanted a cardenza for my 72″ TV and it was authentically pleasing to me if the cardenza was wider than the TV. I am not a fan of overhanging sides.
Also. I wanted a chunky one because there was way too much furniture in those with legs (to make the place look airy and big. Sometimes, I think it is good to have a heavy piece here and there. It can really ground a room.
One day, before bed, I was scrolling through Facebook Marketplace and saw a post for a free cardenza. It was 15 years old and had a broken leg. Since it was heavy, they just placed the leg under the furniture.
In my mind, I had some idea to paint the doors and to re-stain the wood. Then, I would use a stencil to paint a pattern on the doors and my spray-painted hardware.
I reached out to the seller and it was a little bit of an effort, but Mr. Lumberjack and I managed to get it home. The veneer was very close to our floor colors so it made me re-think what I wanted to do with it.
I can’t say I am 100% satisfied with the finished, refurbished product, but my cousin is coming to town and staying with us. I couldn’t keep a tipped over furniture on the floor (we were fixing the broken leg).
Like I said, we were fixing the leg. We wanted to do it right to try to reduce the chance of it snapping again. We tipped it over, took off the base and glued the pieces together. We made sure to clamp the pieces together.
Once the base dried, we fastened the base to the rest of the furniture. I wood putty the irreparable cracks. We didn’t want to spend too much on this piece, so we used whatever stain came closest in our storage. It isn’t perfect but good enough.
I wanted the door to be black to give the piece a more modern look. Also, with it all brown, our loft was missing some contrast. The blackest chalk paint available was Rust-o-leum’s charcoal, so that is with what I went.
On a side note, it was my first time using chalk paint. I am not a fan, because it is really streaky and susceptible to water stains/fingerprints. Are there any tips to prevent this?
In order to paint, Mr. Lumberjack needed to remove the veneer. Just paint goop and wait for at least 30 minutes. Then scrape off the goop and wipe clean.
I rolled on two coats of paint. That was pretty easy. Now, the top of the cardenza was clearly refurbished before. The veneer color was so dark compared to the rest of it.
At this point, I have no time to find a matching veneer. I went with the next best idea. I painted the top too. I am not so happy with the look, but I am sure I can decorate the top later. If not I can always remove the veneer.
Next, I repainted the hardware with gold spray paint. It was another easy step. We might buy sleeker hardware if we change our minds. We bought some new gold screws, because the original screws were old.
To add more gold and tie it together, I was thinking of some sort of pattern stencil in the middle and then bees stencils on the side doors. I couldn’t find one I liked though. It is better to just wait until I find the right one.
Again, I am not 100% satisfied. That is OK though. DIY is best if you are patient. Nothing has to be permanent too. If you wait, you will find exactly what you need and/or the best price.
If you like the look, feel free to replicate. I think refurbishing is so much fun and you don’t have to do much to bring a big impact. When I find the right details, I will post an update.
Have a wonderful day!