Here’s a little train case I picked up at a thrift store …
Except when I bought it, it looked like this …
Cute little case, right? Except for the 1990s floral tapestry.
I like to use old suitcases for storage (because a shelf full of vintage suitcases is much nicer to look at than a shelf full of Rubbermaid totes).
Although this suitcase didn’t qualify as “vintage,” I liked it, and I thought I could neutralize the grandma-y flower print with …
… black chalk paint. In my opinion, a little black chalk paint makes everything better.
I spritzed some water onto the case first, so the paint would go on a little thinner and work itself into the weave of the fabric.
Then I started painting.
I didn’t worry about taping anything off. I just cut into the edges as carefully as I could. I got a little paint on the suede trim and the hardware here and there, but it wiped right off with a damp rag.
Here’s what the case looked like after the first coat. It was a little splotchy and some of the flowers still showed through.
So I just kept spritzing and painting until all vestiges of the flowers were gone.
Eventually, the flowers disappeared. Honestly, it’s now impossible to tell that the case was ever painted.
It looks like it always looked this way.
Here’s the inside. The lining was already grey and in great condition, so I didn’t have to do anything to it …
… except fill it with stuff.
So, one last time: Here’s the “before” …
… and the “after.”