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Upcycling for Good

Paint a kid's balance bike

Update a balance bike with a colourful new look so that it can continue to be enjoyed for years to come!

Resene upcycling for good with Sarah Herring - Project 67

Painted balance bike

You will need:

Painted balance bike
Finished project detail
Painted balance bike
Finished project

Top tip: For a little extra pizazz, try using testpots of Resene FX Metallics for some of the feature painted areas.

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Step one: Sarah’s son has enjoyed this convertible balance bike for years and it has survived some serious toddler wear and tear! Before finding a new owner it desperately needed a makeover. Take the bike apart, clean and sand it thoroughly. You can use sandpaper or an electric sander if you preferred.

Step two:  Once the bike has been dismantled and sanded back to a smooth finish, apply one coat of Resene Quick Dry primer undercoat to all the timber surfaces using a testpot brush.

Step three:  Apply two coats of your chosen base colour using a testpot brush. Sarah used Resene Sante Fe.

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Step four: Once the base colour is completely dry, freehand paint modern shapes on the frame of the bike using various different brush sizes and three testpot colours, or more colours if you like. Sarah chose Resene Cornflower, Resene Spring Wood and Resene Clover. Sarah took inspiration from some patterns found online and painted imperfect shapes until she was happy with the coverage. Once dry, apply another coat of each colour to the painted areas.

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Step five: Apply three coats of Resene Aquaclear Natural to all the paintwork if you wish, for a flatter finish and to help protect the paint. Once dry, reassemble the bike (now in tricycle format) and touch up any imperfections in the paintwork with a small detail brush. It’s surprising how much better the balance bike looked after a fresh and modern paint job! It really proves that quality wooden kids’ toys can be enjoyed for many years to come with a bit of careful maintenance and the odd cosmetic makeover now and then. With a little bit of effort, this bike can now continue bringing joy to other children.

Bike detail
Detail of handlebars
Bike detail
Balance bike

Upcycling for Good

You can find a huge range of treasures, from ornaments and picture frames, to furniture and toys at your local Salvation Army store that you can easily upcycle with a little Resene paint and some imagination.

"Our Family Stores are full of treasures generously donated by members of the public. We value these donations and try our hardest to re-purpose and sell as much as possible. We’re all about re-using and recycling, so teaming up with Resene on Upcycling for Good was a perfect match. Resene’s products and tips are a natural fit with our pre-loved furniture and accessories, which are usually great quality but could sometimes do with a lick of paint to ensure they fly off the shelves.

Each year, nationally, our stores save 16,000 tonnes from landfill. This initiative increases the value of the donated product, improves the range of goods for our customers, and furthers The Salvation Army’s mission and Resene’s community activity.” Gareth Marshall, The Salvation Army's National Family Store Manager.

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Colours shown on this website are a representation only. Please refer to the actual paint or product sample. Resene colour charts, testpots and samples are available for ordering online.   See measurements/conversions for more details on how electronic colour values are achieved.