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Vintage Baby Cradle Gets Updated Makeover

If you’re joining me after my last post making use of a baby sun tent for my workshop, you may think I have baby on the brain based on this vintage baby cradle below. Let me just say…NOPE. It just happens that I was able to pick up this handmade gem from a local charity I love to support. No babies, must baby stuff here! haha.

Handmade Vintage Wooden Cradle Before Makeover by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

Isn’t this gorgeous? It’s made of oak and super solid – built to last. However, it isn’t an antique, but rather made in the likeness with a 90’s vibe. The stain is orange-ish, and the heart cutouts are a dead giveaway. In the past, I’ve dealt with heart cutouts in the past before by removing them, filling them, or even just making the most of their existence.

Funny thing is, you can find these vintage baby cradles in thrift stores, garage sales, and even at Curb le Chic. (aka. #trashure). While they’re an easy find, many tell me they don’t know what to do with them. Obviously, they can be changed up to suit any decor and used as-is, or as a photo prop, planter (if you dare to damage it), or even stuff it with teddy bears, etc.

DIY TIME

My goal today is to update it in a sort-of rustic way. Meaning…remove the 90’s vibe and make it look even older, from a different era to suit something I’d have in my decor. Fingers crossed! First, I add wood filler to a seam that is glued together but then the two pieces crack under stress.

Puttied Split Wood filled with Wood Filler | prodigalpieces.com

Then, I whip out my sander to remove the finish as must as possible. Originally I knew that one of the rockers is loose. I daresay the original artisan who built this beauty did a wonderful job to make this as safe for baby as possible.

Handcrafted Vintage Baby Cradle | prodigalpieces.com

There are no exposed screws, and all joints are precise. However, the one rocker is joint is a mortise and tenon, but the tenon has a split. Since it is snug as a bug, I needed to cut it to remove it for repair.

Broken Cradle Rocker on Vintage Baby Cradle | prodigalpieces.com

In order to repair the break, I add pins with dowels and plenty of wood glue. This makes it tight and as sturdy as original. Thankfully, it all assembles beautifully.

Wooden Dowel Pins for Repairing Vintage Baby Cradle | prodigalpieces.com

Repaired Vintage Babye Cradle Rocker | prodigalpieces.com

NEXT STEPS

Next, after all the repairs, it’s time to do the finish work. Since I just wanted to retain the gorgeous white oak while updating the vintage baby cradle as well, I added a bit of color.

Painting Baby Cradle Details | prodigalpieces.com

This color is definitely a favorite milk paint I’ve used in this furniture makeover HERE. It’s soothing, happy, and perfect for either gender. Meanwhile, I dressed up a few other parts with muted tones as well. Also, I added a bit of hand stitchin’ fun because…why not, right?

Sewing Linen Baby Cradle Bedding by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #handmade

Last, but not least, I used  a but if distressing and wax to aged the painted surfaces. That way it already has a beginning to it’s story-telling properties.

THE REVEAL

Finally, this vintage baby cradle makeover is complete and ready for a whole new life.

Updated Vintage Baby Cradle by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #baby #handmade #home #farmhouse #nursery

White Oak Baby Cradle Makeover by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #baby #home #homedecor #diy

It’s refreshing to see it in the new look with the raw wood pairing and paint, don’t you think? It’s my nod to the original craftsman while seeing that it has a long life ahead. Likewise, it’s perfectly suited for a new baby, as a photo prop, or even stuffed with vintage items as well.

Handmade Linen Cradle Mattress Made by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #baby #vintage #baby #home

Not only did I have a blast, rebuilding and refinishing the cradle, but also hand-sewing the mattress from linen I had on hand. If you’d like to add this to your home or as a gift, you can find it available in my online shop.

  • Handmade Linen Ottoman by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | shop.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #furniture #shopping
    Linen Ottoman ~$75

Rustic Farmhouse Style Handmade Vintage Baby Cradle by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #home #farmhouse #diy #homedecor

In addition, I know there are others out there who find a similar cradle looking for a new life. Do pin and share to inspire others too!

This dated vintage wooden baby cradle gets a new look to update and refresh by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #home #homedecor #baby

Up next, these misfit antique wooden finials are going to get a new life. See their new life OVER HERE.

Antique Wooden Finials Before Upcycle | prodigalpieces.com

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Also, more fun makeovers like my vintage baby cradle:

This vintage folding table was in much need of TLC. Larissa of Prodigal Pieces gave it whimsy and style. Head to prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #furniture #home #homedecor #diy #vintageDIY Folding Potting Bench with plans by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces } prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #gardening #homesteading #selfsufficient

Comments

  1. Rebecca - NC says

    Soooo sweet! In addition to babies, my cats would LOVE it!! 😂 ‘Wishing you all the best health & happiness!!! 😊💕

    • Larissa says

      haha! Yes, cats are such crazy little critters. Hilarious! Our Lily would love it. Back at ya, Rebecca. 😀

  2. ColleenB. ~ Tx. says

    A whole lot of sweetness in that cradle. Absolutely Adorable.
    What a great family heirloom this would make.
    Take care & God Bless. Have a wonderful day.
    Right now I am working on an old metal kitchen stool. Over the years it was green then yellow and then white. Stripping it all down and will end up being a nice pretty red. ( the red is actually called; (100 MPH) My kitchen is blue & white with accents of red so it will fit very nicely in my kitchen.

  3. cindy says

    The addition of the painted portions accents the cradle’s charm perfectly. The mattress you created for it adds the warmth of comfort. From one set of loving hands to another. It is now truly beautiful!

  4. Marie - Interior Frugalista says

    I have a 90s handmade oak cradle waiting in the queue for a makeover so this was very timely. Mine doesn’t have a cute top like yours though. Love the colors you chose! I have a feeling this isn’t going to last long in your shop. Pinned 🙂

    • Larissa says

      Seems they’re a thing! haha! Thanks, Marie. I can’t wait to see what you do with it.

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~ Laurel

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2020-03-21T21:34:13-04:00

~ Laurel

I love it! Larissa is amazing. She listened to what I wanted and then she took care of the rest! This is my second piece I've bought from her and I'm in love! I highly recommend her.

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2020-03-21T21:43:16-04:00

~ Mikki

I should have left this review MONTHS ago! I absolute love this lunch bag. I honestly carry this 5 days a week. It is the perfect size! Not only can you put your lunch in it, it can also hold your book. I enjoy reading at lunch, so I have all I need in one cute bag. Thank you so much Larissa!

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2020-03-21T21:45:37-04:00

~ Sharon

Awww…I love this sweet Cat with an attitude!! SO SO adorable! Well worth the money, and he will become a priceless treasure in my home! Thanks Larissa for always making your ideas turn into true treasures!

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~ Deanna

Perfect purchase from start to finish! Absolutely adorable piece so creatively thought out. Packed with the greatest of care with lightening fast delivery. Very customer-oriented and friendly crafter. Could not ask for more! Thank you!
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