Just A Little Creativity: West Elm inspired Owl Makeover {DIY}

West Elm inspired Owl Makeover {DIY}

Thursday, July 28, 2011

If you've ever stepped foot into a thrift store or gone to a yard sale, you've seen tacky brass or ceramic figures. Owls, rabbits, giraffes, bunnies, Santa Claus...

Have you ever looked past the ugliness of it, and just admired the shape or form? You may have thought "Man, too bad it's so funky because it could be cool".

source: west elm
That's exactly what I thought with two owls I salvaged not long ago. I've been admiring this set from West Elm, and although they're somewhat affordable, the DIY-er in me didn't want to spend the money (I know, I know).  Also, although I like the white, I'm just a bit more of a colorful girl.

Anyway, back to my two ugly salvage owls. It's actually a very easy process to makeover those old ceramic and brass pieces.

First: Use a primer that is made for metals, ceramic, and glass. I prefer Gripper by Glidden. Clean the piece well following the manufactures recommendations. Then give each piece a good coat. Let it dry completely, and give it a second coat.

Second: I let the primer cure overnight. Then, give the piece a few coats of your favorite color paint. If I'd have wanted them to look just like the West Elm owls, I'd have left them white, but again, I prefer color. I chose a teal and a raspberry, and just used regular craft paint.

Third: Again, I let the paint cure overnight. Then, I took them outside and sprayed a coat of clear sealer over them for additional protection and extra shine. My favorite product for this is Krylon Acrylic Crystal Clear.

Last: After letting them dry, which doesn't take long, simply enjoy!


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  1. What a cool transformation! And I love the colors you chose because they definitely make the owls stand out. :-)

  2. Those look terrific. Such fun colors!

  3. I LOVE DIY!!Very nice!! I love the teal one- my porch is teal so now you have me wanting one!!

  4. Oh yeah- I am following you from the Friday Blog hop- Thanks for stopping by!Keep a look at for some of my own DIY coming soon :)

  5. Looks great!

    Following you from the Fancy Friday hop :)

  6. very cute! And it's amazing how updated they look now. Just like something from a trendy shop!

  7. Following you from Say Hi Sunday.....I love these owl projects.

  8. Cute job!! Love the ease of that!! I've got to see things from your perspective from now on...what can I paint!!
    Blessings, Doni

  9. SO cute! I just did that to two dollar store squirrels here... it took me FOUR coats!

    -Carly @ Createliveblog

  10. I know that you have so many blog parties to choose from so thank you for choosing Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop. This post is added to the party blast! Enjoy the rest of the week :)

  11. I love owls, and this is a great improvement from the original owls! :)

  12. I love the colors! Great choice. I would love for you to link up at http://www.thesasselife.com/2011/09/link-party-2.html.
    Hope to see you there.

  13. Sheesh, what an incredible transformation! I can only hope I'll be lucky enough to come across some owls in need of a little crafty love next time I'm out shopping!

    Visiting by way of Malia's Crafty Soiree!

    Jenn/Rook No. 17