Green Trunk makeover using Modern Masters Metal Effects

Let me start by saying I am not a trunk restorer, but sometimes when I see a trunk I can't help but try to help it continue on with life.

I love old a lot.  I have a dear friend that restores trunks, and he's amazing at doing it!!!

I found this old trunk at our local Habitat ReStore a long while ago.  I thought I'd get to it immediately, but as time went by I worked on other things.  Leaving the trunk neglected as it had already once been.

I walked into my studio one morning to find it sitting there staring at me...almost to say "hello I grew legs overnight because I was tired of being ignored"... (that actually was the voice on the other side of the door which belonged to my husband).

Ok ok got my attention.  Now what!?!

As you can see the poor thing was painted but not very well.  And, there were stains all over it...  Both strap handles were missing, but it had fantastic bones.

The innards were covered in this really old & stale wallpaper.  But, there was no smell...whew!  So I ripped out the ugly covering..

At first I had thought about striping the paint off the outside of the trunk as much as I could, and then just painting over it. But, as the day grew longer I realized I didn't think that'd give this trunk the face lift it truly needed or wanted!

I did use a stripping agent so I could remove all the old paint from the straps (metal and wood).  I then proceeded in ripping the canvas off the rest of the trunk.  All of that is paint splatters from I am not sure what.

Once I had it the canvas torn completely off, the paint stripped off the wood & metal and the holes filled from the old straps, I was able to start working on my vision of bringing some life back to this trunk!

I knew I wanted to give it a patina look... Old but new...

So I turned to my faithful friend Modern Masters Metal Effects...  I used the primer over the entire trunk.

And, then using the metal effects to make that patina look come to life!!!  Modern Masters Inc. provides many videos on how to achieve this look.  I have also written a few posts that explain the easy technique of using metal effects - HERE.

The hardest part was waiting overnight for it to react!!  It's always the hardest part :)

The next day, I used a custom mix of Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint using a little Lucketts Green and Kitchen Scale to give it a nice green color.  I just mixed it until I got the color I desired.  The paint was still wet in this picture.. But wow what a difference!

Since both straps were missing, and I am not a trunk restorer, I needed to do something that was different..  So I found these handles in my stash of hardware.  They were brand new so I needed to make them look a little old.

Guess who I turned to?  I used my Modern Masters Metal Effects and gave them just a little patina look adding a little extra rust to them.

Remember the insides?  I ripped out all of the nasty wallpaper and just painted it with some off-white paint I had on hand.  Much better now..

I don't even think it looks like the same trunk!  I took it to my booth at Newburgh Vintage Emporium.  A couple of days later I got a phone call from my dear trunk restorer friend who also has a booth space there.  He loved my trunk, and paid me the highest compliment ever.... He wanted it and had to have it....not for himself, but to sell in his booth.  See it fit into his aesthetics...he & I have an agreement on some different furniture pieces that work well in my space so it worked for both of us well.  Plus he brings me fresh veggies & herbs from his garden.  And, he's a VET just like my daddy so he has a special place in my heart!

And, he then wanted to know if I could help him with another trunk that he was going to scrap the pieces and throw away the trunk.  Once you see it you'll understand.  WOW!!! I am humbled...and it made me feel amazing!

So..I leave you with a little peek at the amazingly gorgeous trunk I worked on for him... And, soon I will show you the entire makeover and what it originally looked like.

Until then my friends...

Much love, peace & happiness ~


  1. Good job, Lynn! It's nice to know you had actually sold your newly-transformed trunk. Creativity pays off well. I'm excited for the other trunk you're working on.

  2. Great work! I think it looks awesome, but...I think the side handles are too shiny ornate. I knew I had seen someone use purchased leather ones, but when I googled them I wasn't liking the ones I found. Then I found I still didn't like the leather ones (more of the same) but they had really cool metal ones that were rustic & more appropriate to the style of the trunk. Go take a look for next time.:)

  3. love the transformation!

    when i clicked on the link below to subscribe, all i get is a page of script - help!

  4. Lynn - The trunks are amazing! And how fortunate they are to have you give them new life. Awesome! Found you at Sugar Bee Crafts. Have a great day!

  5. Awesome! You do such fantastic work! Thank you for sharing your projects with us at the Brag About It Link Party!
    Hope you have a fantastic week!

  6. Wow Lynn, wonderful job with the metal patina finish and the green color mix, I saw a vintage trunk just yesterday my favorite local thrift for only 10 bucks, I was all excited to think of the steal I just found, then I checked out the bottom... totally bummed to find it badly separated with water damage... Love your transformation!

  7. Love it! Thanks for sharing at #inspirationmonday :)

  8. What an amazing transformation, Lynn! I LOVE the patina you created-and the pretty green! No wonder you sold it so quickly! Thank you so much for sharing at the Wonderful Wednesday Blog Hop!

  9. Lynn, this is really cool! I have a similar trunk that I'm working on....very slowly. Thank you for sharing on Idea Box!

  10. Pretty!! I love that awesome green color. My aunt used to restore trunks and I've loved them since. Thanks for sharing!

  11. Love the rust with the green colour you chose. Would love it if you would share it at our furniture only party/// "Friday's Furniture Fix"It's open until Monday night. Have a great weekend!

  12. Wow - I'm going to have to give metal effects a try. That is too cool. Beautiful job on the trunk, Lynn!


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