Trashy Tuesday, The Ladders of the Dumpster

Le Junque

Welcome back for another addition of Trashy Tuesday.  This is probably my favorite day of the week.  When I get to talk trash, literally – over what I found in and around the dumpster and what I did with it.

I thought this was an especially interesting ladder and dumpster, but I have yet to come across one like this:

I had to actually go to the dump today, and since I like to do my “part” in keeping things out of landfills….I always strategically scan the dump line up for any gem that might be just waiting for rescue before it gets throw into the “pile”.  This is what I found today:

Poor little table, good thing I got there, it was seconds away from becoming a pile of wood buried under lawn clippings!

For some reason, I have had a run on ladders lately.  I found two next to a dumpster recently, and one for just a few dollars at a church rummage sale.  Recently I was in Sonoma, and my friend and I kept noticing many of the antique stores were selling old wood ladders, painted in fun soft colors.  This is where I drew my inspiration (copied).

Today, I am sharing my latest ladder.  It was in pretty poor condition.  The wood was well worn, paint spills were everywhere, it was…. dirty.  But that has never stopped me from seeing the potential.  A good cleanup with TSP, a thorough sanding with 220 grit paper and my little ladder is ready for her new phase of life.  Here we are, just about to get all dolled up.

I painted this little piece with my favorite CeCe Caldwell’s Santa Fe Turquoise.  When it was dry, I dry brushed just a little CeCe Caldwell’s Springhill Green on the steps.  A quick sand with a 320 grit paper to make the ladder buttery soft. A nice wipe down with CeCe Caldwell’s wax.  After a good buffing, this ladder was a show piece.  As luck would have it.  The weather was gorgeous the day I finished it, and my Roses were in an especially good mood.  I snapped A LOT of pictures.

Here is an up close of all the chippy, rusty deliciousness.

Hope you enjoyed the “steps” I shared in creating my little lovely ladder. If you come across one of these old, sad, tossed by the way side items, think about all the new uses it could have in your life, with just a little love and a little makeup, it will “step right up” to become your new favorite piece of furniture.


  1. Claudine

    I love the ladder!!!
    I haven’t tried CeCe’s paint yet, love the color!!

  2. Kelly @ Eclectically Vintage

    I love old ladders – and the idea of painting them – fabulous!!

    But that dumpster/swimming pool scares me! Did you lay a towel next to it and catch some rays? Is there a lifeguard posted nearby? I think that dumpster needs to come home with you – wouldn’t it make a fabulous coffee table?!

  3. Brenda

    So pretty! It looks perfect in the garden. Or is it for indoors? Would love to see how you use it!

  4. cassie

    gorgeous! and that color combo has me weak in the knees!

  5. Theresa L Begin

    Great if mine just wasn’t an ugly old Aluminum one.. Great Page!

  6. Lori

    When you mention “buffing” it after applying the wax, what exactly do you mean? I know there are several techniques, but I’m curious about which technique you use, becuase I LOVE the way your items turn out. Thanks!!

  7. Shannon Fox

    Did that dumpster have pool tile lining… and water in it?

    Love that ladder. My fav shade =) So cute. You can do loads with them too!!
    Nice save!

    I’ll have to re name you the GREEN PIXIE NINJA 😉

  8. vintageshabbychicks

    I absolutely love this ladder…now I need to find one..quick! Love CeCe Caldwells paints and the wax is to die for:-)

  9. Kathy van Gogh

    That ladder is wonderfully rustic and pretty. Love your colour choices and your technique. CeCe Caldwell paint looks fab! And…I love your sorta kooky style. Paint on!

  10. Pamela

    Love it Karen!! Our old ladder is on its last leg so now it will get a new life too!:) Thanx for joining THT!

  11. Grace

    I just found myself a wooden ladder at a church yard sale as well! Unfortunately it is so tall I can’t stand it up in my basement workshop – so I’m trying to sell it on kijiji, but no takers in this area 🙁 (Toronto is too modern for rustic deliciousness). Loving the blue/green combo!

  12. Jill Flory

    I love that ladder! So will you keep it and do something fun with it or will you sell it??
    I like old ladders too but I kind of try to stick to the rule ‘only buy when I know what I’m going to do with it’
    I don’t always stick to that but I try! i have one small ladder that is chippy and white and I love it. I’ve had it for years but never done anything more with it than lean it against the wall. Would love to think of a reallly cute way to use it.

  13. Stacey

    What a cute piece! I love that chippy color…I want one, too!
    Thanks for linking up – so happy you did!
    Stacey of Embracing Change

  14. Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co.

    I want one!

  15. Jenn Gray

    Super Cute. What a transformation.


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