How To Update This Old Trunk?

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Q: I just bought this old trunk for VERY cheap off of Craigslist. The inside is okay and will be easy to fix up, but the outside is in need of some repairs. The main problems:

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  • How to repair the 'X' on the top and fill in the gouges (there are 3)?
  • How to remove or cover the rust on the metal fixtures and studs?
  • How to best to change the color? Paint? Wallpaper? Etc.
  • Would it be possible to fix the lock?

My ideas so far have been to sand out the X and paint the box. I would even out the gouges and cover with paintable tape before painting. Or maybe something a little crazier — like recovering the box with wallpaper or contact paper? I've been told the studs and locks can't be removed without a special tool.

I would love to get other people's ideas on how to update this trunk.


Sent by Tamara

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(Image credits: Tamara)

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Regina is an architect who lives with her husband and children in Lawrence, KS. As a LEED Accredited Professional and longtime contributor to Apartment Therapy and The Kitchn, her focus is on healthy, sustainable living through design.