Thursday, January 28, 2021

Paper Mache Suitcase Update


It's that time again for the monthly Thrift Store Upcycle Challenge, hosted by Angela @ Simply Beautiful by Angela   where a group of creative bloggers come together to share their lovely transformations of a thrift store item. Who doesn't love thrift store upcycle projects - whether it's actually creating one or admiring how an item from a thrift store was transformed!

The Rules:

  • Upcycle an item(s) from a thrift store, resale store, or garage sale into a new piece of decor.
  • There's no monthly theme.
  • There's no budget to stick to.
Because of the pandemic, I had to shop my home for this challenge. It didn't take me long to find something from Goodwill that I've had for a number of years - a paper mache or cardboard suitcase - it was $2 back then. I know most of you will probably say why would you want to change that lovely pattern? Well, I've had it for over ten years and I've been reluctant to do anything with it. It is a pretty design but it just doesn't go with anything I have. It's been in a closet all this time.
I had been using it to store old photos and now it was time for a makeover - or so I thought!
You can see from the pictures that it's in good shape - both outside and inside.
Unfortunately, things didn't go as planned. I had envisioned painting it and then either decoupaging something on it or painting a stencil or design on it. Time was not on my side. I started painting the case .  .  . one side at a time .  .  . letting
it dry between coats. I applied three coats and the finish still looked awful! Splotchy in areas. I could see the variations of the flower pattern - especially where the colors were darker. 
Then the paint began to lift. Oh boy! I know you're asking what type of paint did I use.  Anita's All Purpose Acrylic. And yes, it's a craft paint I got from Hobby Lobby. But what I liked about the paint is that it's made by Rust-oleum. The label stated that it is a "high quality waterbased paint for general craft use and decorative painting. For use on wood, artist's canvas, plaster, clay, metal, fabric, bisque, and more. Permanent. Soap and water cleanup while wet." What more could I ask for? 

Update in Progress:
After I managed to get a somewhat even paint finish I stopped working on the suitcase. I couldn't go on - after testing a corner, the paint still lifted and time ran out for me to complete the suitcase for this challenge. Now I have to re-think this project. But in the meantime, this is how it looks:
The color is perfect for my decor.
 But I'm not sure where I will place it, though.
All I can say is, stay tuned!

And now for more thrifty goodness!

Meet the Hosts

Angela | Simply Beautiful By Angela 

Beverly | Across the Blvd  

Gail | Purple Hues and Me  

Marci | Stone Cottage Adventures

Our Thrift Store Upcycle group of bloggers is always looking to expand -- and we need your help! Why not consider joining in our thrift store upcycle challenge on the last Thursday of each month? Make some friends while having fun and share your love of DIY with the world. It’s a win-win! Sound like something you’d be interested in? Just leave a comment at the end of this post with your contact info and a link to your blog. Someone will get back to you right away. We can’t wait to meet you!

Check out what my fellow upcyclers created below!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter


  1. It's frustrating when a project doesn't go as planned! I've found that using a primer first always helps. I use Kilz for lots of projects. Looking forward to how this turns out.

    1. Thanks, Beverly! I wasn't thinking when I started this project. Yes, I should have used a primer and I actually have a can of Kilz. But it just didn't dawn on me since I couldn't go outside to spray since it has been too cold and wet here. And lately I've been in a funky mood and actually pushing myself to do projects. I just don't feel it right now.

  2. The color you chose is gorgeous and I love the size, perfect for storing photos. You're such a creative genius, I'm sure you will find the perfect solution. -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures


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