A Free Spindle Crib

This is where my youngest now sleeps:

He was sleeping, for a time, in this:
Now I must say that I actually find the brown crib a lovely shape and a very solid construction.  But the teeth marks are horrendous (trust me, they’re way worse than you can see in this picture!).  And its sleigh-bed curves are really a bit too big for its location in the room.  But since I had gotten a great deal on it (from craigslist, of course) when we moved back from Paris, I kept telling myself that I should just live with it.  What I really wanted, though, was something with an antique feel that would go better with the rest of the furniture in the room (since his room doubles as our guest room where we have soft, ruffled curtains and several family pieces… I promise to reveal the whole room soon).  Something like this:
I mentioned this dream casually to my mother recently, and was thrilled when she called me a few days later asking if I wanted a FREE white spindle crib.  Her church was getting rid of it.  Um… yes!  Unfortunately, it was a stark white almost enamel look, which made the off white trim in the room look gross… So I set out to transform.  Here is the result (please forgive the funny angle – there’s a full bed that keeps me from backing up more!):
To get there, I lightly sanded the whole thing with a rotary sander.  Even chalk paint would have had a hard time sticking to that slick surface.  Plus, I needed something more difficult to distress than chalk paint because I didn’t want the white shiny undercoat to show through.  Then I spray painted with a flat, off white spray paint from Lowe’s (that more or less matched my trim in the room).
I distressed the crib with the rotary sander, careful not to sand large surfaces (which would have merely stripped the spray paint and not the shiny white coat).  I then used Rustoleum’s Kona stain (I wanted something really dark) just on the distressed parts.  I simply applied it with my finger and wiped it off with an old t-shirt.  I give the whole thing a quick and dirty coat of Miss Mustard Seed’s antiquing wax, and I called it done.  You can see some places where I highlighted the distressing with stain here:
And the dirty feel of the wax here:
I then used some leftover drop cloth fabric to mimic the crib skirt of my inspiration nursery.  The box pleats were easy, and I managed to use existing hems.  A snap!  Since my son will be one next week, there’s no point in the bumpers… I fear he would simply use them to climb out of the crib!  Anyway, it’s definitely a step closer to the overall feel I am going for in this room, and it makes the room feel bigger.  Best of all, it came in at a whopping $7 for two cans of spray paint!  That’s my kind of project. :)  Come back soon to see the full room reveal.

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  1. Wow, what a great looking crib! It looks fantastic in the room with all of the other furnishings. So bright and cheery! I always love reading your posts and seeing what creative things you come up with.

  2. Gorgeous! I’m in love!! My son’s crib was similar but I found it at Walmart years ago. I love how you distressed yours! Amazing 😉
    Jamie @ somuchbetterwithage.com

  3. So cool! Hope to have my crib redo up on my blog this week!

  4. LOVE this crib! Great job!

  5. Its a beautiful crib! Love how it turned out! If you get a chance, please link this up to my sunday linky party: http://suburbsmama.blogspot.com/2013/04/sunday-linky-party-2.html

  6. This is beautiful! I love knock offs.. especially free ones! I love the rustic look with the light sanding! I too am redoing our babies room! such exciting times!


  7. Very lovely!

  8. So lovely! My kids slept in the exact same crib and I have been holding onto it for years. I may make chairs out of it for them! Found you through My Repurposed Life’s Catch as Catch Can 117…

    Cher @ Designs by Studio C

  9. I don’t have any kids yet but I’m constantly scouring Craiglist for a crib just like this! I can’t wait to look until I actually need it because then, I’m sure, there won’t be one in a 100 mile radius. lol. Love it!

    • Haha… I totally get it, Jenna! I’m always finding things I don’t need and never can find the things I do! Like I said the in the post, it took a full year after my son was born to come across this one… I guess good things come to those who wait. :)

  10. Gorgeous! I just refinished our crib too in neutral. Love it!

  11. Darling new crib! I love spindle looks anyway, but on a crib it makes it that much more adorable!
    Love the crib skirt too :)

    Thanks for sharing with us, and it’s always great to see creative minds at work. :)

    Visiting from Nifty Thrifty Tue@ linda-coastal charm linky party
    Suz @MaytagNMom
    NW Illinois
    ~~My Current Project At The Party~~

  12. Congrats! You were my pick for features this week at the Give Me The Goods Link Party! Please come by and grab your button!! :)

  13. So cute. Love the crib and the bedskirt! I was thinking I might need to make a drop cloth skirt for my vintage laundry table that I will be using in my craft room. Really like how you pleated yours! Thanks for sharing with Share Your Cup.

  14. Katie Durr says:

    Hi, I was wondering if using those paint/wax products is safe for babies or if it could be toxic if they happen to chew on the railing? How long did this process take you?

    • Rachel Paxton says:

      Hi Katie, great questions! The three products I used were wood stain, spray paint, and an all-natural beeswax. The wood stain and spray paint (non lead-based, low VOC, etc.) were the same type of finishes applied in factories on any other furniture. The beeswax is especially safe given that it’s actually natural as opposed to the others. However, I also gave myself peace of mind by using a plastic guard on the top edge of the side crib rail. Though a baby very well might chew on other parts of the crib, the main part they tend to chew is the top rail on the outside edge, and I had a plastic guard that matched the crib (it’s actually there in the pictures, though you can’t really even see it). That gave me the extra security I needed mentally! :) And I think I did the process in two naptimes… One for painting, another for sanding, staining, waxing. Maybe 4 hours total? Hope this helps!

  15. I just stumbled across this and LOVE the skirt! Do you have any detailed instructions on how to make it? I can sew, definitely not the best, but would love some extra instruction on it or how-to for it!

    • Rachel Paxton says:

      Hi Danielle! I’m so glad you like the skirt. It is seriously the most embarassingly easy thing to make… but I don’t have a tutorial anywhere. Are you hoping to make one soon? If you’re not in a rush, I can put it on my list of posts and hopefully make a tutorial in the next month or so. If you need it sooner, email me, and I’ll try my best to answer your questions! :)

  16. Well Im glad its super easy! I could definitely wait a month! Im about halfway through my pregnancy and have some time before I will need the skirt so if you could do one in a month or so that would be awesome! If it gets later and I embark on it I can just send some questions too! Thanks :)

    • Rachel Paxton says:

      Wonderful. Congratulations!! I’ll try to fit a tutorial in sometime in the not to distant future. I hope your pregnancy continues smoothly!

  17. Rachel it is lovely. I am hoping that it meets the current safety codes also. Sometimes old cribs have movable sides and rails spaced too far apart. Better safe than sorry. God bless your family.

    • Rachel Paxton says:

      You are so kind, Vicky! This one did have a movable side, but we simply removed the adjustable latches and replaced them with very secure screws. You’re right, it’s not worth the risk! :)

  18. Marlene Stephenson says:

    What a wonderful bed,everything you do is just perfection,you are a very talented person.Hope you have sold your house,i know you are anxious to move. Who knows with you getting a little closer to Okla.we may meet.Have a great week.

    • Rachel Paxton says:

      Marlene, you are the best encourager ever! Thank you so so much for your sweet words. And yes, if I ever make it all the way up there, I think you’re right. :)

  19. Love, love, love your Spindle Crib? I have a Jenny Lind Spindle crib that I have stored for my son to have for his children. His wife doesn’t want it because she says it’s not up to current safety codes and sides have dropped on those cribs and babies have lost limbs! Wow! I don’t know how my son survived in that crib! But I’m going to refinish it just like yours and have it at my house for my grandson when he visits. Have you looked into upgrading to comply with current safety codes? I need to look into that or they won’t let him in it! HA!
    Thanks Rachael!

    • Rachel Paxton says:

      Thank you so much, Cathy! I actually gave myself peace of mind by simply putting a large bolt through the drop down side. So it is now secured similarly to the stationary side (it simply removes the drop down feature). I also put that side against the wall (not because I don’t think it’s safe but because the plastic piece that allows it to drop down is ugly. Ha!). I hope this helps!

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