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French Farmhouse Style Baker’s Rack Makeover

Today, we’re sharing all the chippy goodness from the farmhouse style baker’s rack makeover for the lanai at Bliss Barracks.

This baker’s rack is one of my Mom’s favorite pieces on the lanai.  She’s had it for years and while it’s been well loved, it has also seen better days.

I’m a big believer in “shopping the house” and using those items you already have before buying anything new so I knew immediately, we would find a way to breathe new life into that old treasured piece.

Baker’s racks like these can be so versatile because you can use them for everything from plant stands to drink stations to displaying garden décor or accessories and even using baker’s racks as makeshift buffets.  Our first step was to sand the boards down as much as possible to with 80-grit sandpaper.

Next, I added a gray wash of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in French Linen and after that layer was completely dry, I added a whitewash.  Full disclosure I wanted to paint these boards with white exterior paint, but my Mom wanted to be able to see some of the original paint, so the gray and white wash was an easy way to make that happen.  I think when it comes to decorative decisions like this you just to decide how you want the entire space to feel and how your furniture, fabric and paint choices can help enhance that overall vibe.

Keep in mind, if you plan to use furniture that has been chalk painted, outside, according to the Annie Sloan Chalk Paint website it is recommended you seal with a water-based exterior varnish with UV protection to prevent color fading, stains and to help the finish last longer. There is no need to wax.

As far as keeping all that chippy goodness in place goes, we plan to try Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint Tough Coat .  I know we’ll have to apply the Tough Coat with a brush though which makes me a little nervous because some of those chips are barely hanging on, you know?

In addition, you must use caution, care and proper safety and preventative measures any time you’re working with rusty/crusty pieces like this.

Our plan for now is to use the baker’s rack as an outdoor kitchen herb garden with 6-inch pots but we’ll probably wait to make the final decision until we get the rest of the pieces for the lanai in place.

That said, I wanted to show you how versatile they can be so we staged the French farmhouse style baker’s rack with a few different plants and accessories so you could see several options…

Now that we have this piece finished, I’m excited to see how everything else is going to come together. We’re hoping we have the Bliss Barracks Lanai Makeover finished this month so you can find our design plan and to-do list here .

It rained a good portion of the day yesterday, so I wasn’t able to finish the dry sink makeover at Bliss Barracks as planned.  I’m hoping it’s going to be a sunny day today though, so I’ll be heading down this morning to take more photos and give it another go!

Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

Many blessings,


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  1. Shelia P. says:

    Hi CoCo! I love how the bakers rack turned out! I have one that’s almiost identical except mines got wrought iron bars where your Moms is solid. It looks so much better since you sanded it! down! I can’t wait to see how the other pieces are going to turn out! You’re off to a good start! Have a great day!?

    1. I appreciate it, Shelia, thank you so much. I was probably the most nervous about this piece of all the pieces we’re upcycling because my Mom loves it so much and I wanted to try and find a way to save it for her. It was in pretty bad shape when we started but I think it’s all going to work out for her now. As you know, working with pieces that are going to be exposed to the elements can be tricky so we’ll definitely have to keep our eye on this one. Big hugs for a happy day, CoCo

  2. CoCo – you work your magic wherever you go! We see your pixie dust sprinkled throughout your parents home. We love this rack as well as all of your design plans for the lanai. We love following along! Much love!

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