Many years ago I found a small white writing desk in a thrift store for $5 and bought it because it had an owl sticker from the 1960s with someone else’s name written on it inside one drawer. It’s since been carted around with me to several houses/apartments and has always been used as my makeup table since.
Sadly the paint on it is nearly impossible to clean. A few spilled eyeshadows, dropped eyeliner pens, and other standard makeup messes later and the top looked totally disgusting. I am almost embarrassed to post the photo below, but there you go (and it’s smeared everywhere from my trying to wipe it clean).
Recently I got fed up and decided it needed a makeover or to be replaced! However it’s such a perfect size for my small bedroom and I haven’t had any luck finding a better option so my little table had to stay (and be made over). I’m going post what I did as a tutorial as it’s a super easy way to get a perfectly custom writing table or makeup table of your own. 🙂
-Table (I used my makeup table, but this would work well for a computer desk, writing table, or anything you want to keep clean and customize)
-Measuring taple (the hardware store metal type ideally)
-Paper (I used wrapping paper, a vintage doily, candy wrappers, embossed paper, ribbon, lace, a sequin mask, and some other bits)
-Plexiglass (not regular glass, plexi’ is impervious to cracking/damage and easily wiped off and if it does break it wont shatter and cause harm)
Measure your table. Do this a couple of times to make sure you get exactly the right size and write it down.
Go to your local hardware store and get some plexiglass! They will cut it for you exactly to size so you don’t have to worry about that. Plexiglass is about $6 a square foot (my table took 4 and a half feet for example). It comes with a translucent plastic sheet adhered to both sides to protect it and prevent scratching.
Trace your cut to size plexiglass on the wrapping paper base (goes underneath the collage to create a cohesive backdrop, but isn’t really necessary) and cut out the paper. Lay the paper on your table.
Arrange small bits of fabric, cards, stickers, whatever you like on the paper base! The great thing is none of these are glued or adhered in place so whenever your tastes change you can customize your table to match! So easy! I like the look of varying textures and not just papers- so I incorporated an old sequin mask, ribbon, a doily (of course), and other bits like that. Choose items that are very thin and flat so they don’t wrinkle up under the glass.
Carefully peel the plastic sheeting off of your plexiglass and then lay it on top of your collage! Voila! You now have a work surface that can easily be wiped off and a wicked collage of your very own underneath. Super fast and really cute. 🙂