Poor Betty White.
Not the amazingly funny and hilarious actress… (Even though I do bear a striking resemblance to her, in both looks…
and the total disregard of rules of propriety for the sake of a joke…)
No, the OTHER Betty White.
My old, over-used, completely loved Kitchen Aid Mixer.
After a slew of facebook links from my big brother, showing me all the things that were possible with some paint and a Kitchen Aid, I decided to give a try at spicing up the old girl. Making her unique. Like me.
I started by taking her apart. I googled for instructions, which were pretty easy to find. I unscrewed the bottom silver plate, which you can see in the photo above that’s held down by 3 screws. The plate lifts right out as soon as the screws are gone. Then I began scrubbing.
I used a combination of dawn dish soap, hot water, a toothbrush and a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. You HAVE TO (I repeat) HAVE TO start with a very clean mixer. So I got in there and got all scrubby. Every nook and cranny. Because making cookies sounds sweet and innocent, but it’s a messy business.
I then took off the back panel, which exposed the hardware, wires, etc., housed within the mixer. You must protect this part of your mixer at all costs. (After I got the mixer prepped for paint, I simply took a ziplock baggie and covered it up, placing a rubber band gently around the wiring, then screwed the housing back on so the pattern would be continuious. I will show you a picture of it later.)
It was kinda gross under there (my mixer is over 10 years old, and I’d never taken it apart like this. I didn’t know you could!) So I washed it up and THEN took a picture. But if you take yours apart and find cookie crumbs from 4 Christmases past, it’s not just you. I had that too. It’s normal. Once you get to this point, you are ready to start the design process.
I used a roll of clear contact paper, a google image of zebra stripe that I printed off onto regular paper, some circle templates (*cough* a pringles can and an old pill bottle cause we are classy with a K around here), some scissors, a sharpie, and an exacto knife. I made some varying size circles, cut them out, and then got ready to go zebra.
I chose Zebra because the ability to screw it up is virtually impossible. I like those odds. As long as it was black and white all over, I knew I could live with the results. If you decide to ever cut out zebra patterns, I highly suggest coloring in one color so you know where to cut.
Then I just cut out the black bits and set them aside, leaving me a wonderful template to stick on my mixer.
It took about 2 hours of cutting and sticking the contact paper on, but I finally got it. I also took masking tape and covered the electrical cord because I wanted to keep it white. By then it was 3am last night. So I decided to paint in the morning.
Today, I got up and immediately started painting (in my nightgown in the front yard) because it looked like rain, and I really hoped that I could get it done before showers hit. I used Rustoleum Gloss Protective Enamel spray paint (available at the walmarts) in black. It’s available in TONS of colors, so no restrictions there.
And I got it all painted! You can see the lines where the contact paper is. You couldn’t see that THE GOSH DANG SECOND AFTER I SNAPPED THIS PIC, IT STARTED RAINING. Not little april showers raining. No, more like “make Charlie panic in her front yard in her nightgown like a crazy person because the mixer is TOTALLY WET from paint, plus it’s heavy, and it has to get moved asap before it gets blotchty so it’s just like picking up a greased spray painted pig” kinda rain.
I totally ruined the front of my nightgown and got paint all over my hands, but I got the thing inside and onto my kitchen table. After the paint got *not-tacky* (which my level of taste begs for clear definitions of the meaning of tacky, but that’s a whole other post) (Sorry, it took about an hour to get not tacky), I began to peel off the contact paper. And with each and every piece that I pulled off, it made me oooh and aaah out loud. Because it just kept looking better!
Especially down the neck of the mixer. I didn’t know a mixer could look sexy. But Betty sure does!
So you probably see the big circles void of zebra print. Those are the “cherry on top” places. I have an obsession with cherries, and have for years. These were made with red and green auto touch up paint that I got for 6 bucks each. They stink to high heavens, too, so be careful if using them indoors.
After the weather cleared up and the cherries were on and all the contact paper was off, I took it back outside and sprayed it with Krylon “Glitter Blast Clear.” I was kinda dissapointed because I thought it would have a little sparkle to it. I was wrong. But this was better anyway, because it SEALS REALLY WELL. 2 coats of that, and it was time to bring Betty back inside and put her back together.
(Scold if you must, but turning the silver plate that said “Kitchen Aid” into a name plate that reads “Bitchin’ Betty” is only for the sole purpose of making me laugh my head off any time I see it. I have many items like this around my house. Like my personalized bobble head Matt had made for me. And if you don’t have reminders to laugh through-out the day, then you are missing out.)
Oh, and here’s a pic of the ziplock baggie I used with a rubber band to protect the motor.
And here she is, in all her zebra stripey, cherry-licious glory. I can’t even begin to describe how happy looking at this makes me.
And that, folks, is how you take a weekend and give yourself a statement piece for your house that doesn’t match ANYTHING ELSE YOU’VE GOT!!! (But that was my choice, you could make one that matches your decor.) I am in love with my Betty, now more than ever.
And the next project I’m working on is going to take a solid couple days to do. But it’s a biggie. And it will be worth the wait. Till then, I hope you have lots of fun making your world a little off color!