Create an Elegant Bar Set by Building on Black & Going with Gold

Sometimes, you find mismatched pieces that already look like they belong together and just need some simple editing to make them elegant and exciting. 

A pair of “Madison Curved Back” chairs get together with a sleek metal bar cart to create a set styled in black and gold.  These two tones are so sharp together and match any décor, given their timeless, glamorous feel and appeal.

While it is always exciting to totally transform a piece’s look with new colors, often the best choice is to enhance what is already there—a black finish—and take it to a new level by adding vibrant gold. 

`1. Get to Goodwill to find your goods and hunt for classics

Head over to Goodwill and check out their wide array of unusual and unique furniture pieces available for just a buck or two.   A pair of curved back chairs with wider, rounder seats caught my eye and attention due to their flowing design.  Bar carts are always hot sellers at Goodwill, so be sure to take one home if you come across one there.  

While these three pieces were already matching in black when I found them, don’t limit yourself if current tones or finishes are different because paint makes it easy to make disparate items look connected.

2. Build on the black with some shine

Remove any parts you want to keep paint-free (like the bar cart’s glass shelves), then place your items on a drop cloth and outside, if possible.  I got lucky with a very warm, Spring-like day when I tackled this project.  Spray paint will get all over items, so being outside helps keep your home safe while ensuring you have fresh air. 

A glossy black was used to hide existing nicks and scuffs while giving a shiny finish to each piece.  Since they were already black, only one paint can was needed.  Allow your items to dry completely, then position them on their sides and add another layer.  Repeat this step on the other side, too.  This will ensure your pieces have a good, uniform finish on all sides, parts, and pieces. 

3. Go for the gold to make it totally bold

A bright, glossy, metallic gold paint was sprayed on the bottom portions of the chairs and bar cart.  They were placed next to each other, on their sides, at first, and the paint was applied lightly and evenly so it was the same height/level on each chair leg and bar cart part.  

Pick your pieces up, place them upright, and move around them to ensure each round part of the legs gets the gold treatment.   This step was so exciting because it made the pieces shimmer and shine.  The contrast of the black with the gold made me think of old Hollywood.  And this step made these pieces a truly matching set.  Va-va-voom!

4.  Add elegant accessories

This glamorous bar set will look so attractive in your place that you’ll want to invite others over right away to show them your styling skills.  Pick up elegant accessories like wine and champagne glasses, sleek dishes, and interesting art to create a show-stopping setting.   

You will say, “Cheers!” when you toast your companions and as you celebrate your upcycling transformation talents!

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Tim Kime

Artist, Motivational Speaker, Life Coach

Tim Kime is an artist, life coach, and connector. He is the President of Kime Leadership Associates, offering executive coaching, meeting facilitating, and motivational speaking. He is also the Chief Creative Force of Transformation Junkies which upcycles furniture and other household items into functional works of art. He combined his two passions—unleashing the potential in people and transforming items with the launch of the Art of Possibilities Workshops. These workshops are part upcycling, part dreaming, and part goal setting.