Vintage Ammo Trunk into Art

Back in the 80’s, my Grandmother found an old vintage ammo trunk. It was drab, boring and utterly uninspiring. But Grandmother Oldham had an eye for art. She knew how to take something that had no appeal and transform it into a thing of beauty. Recently I was at my Mom’s house and saw her ocean chest and got to talking about it. Here’s how Grandmother Oldham turned a vintage ammo trunk into art!

Vintage Ammo Trunk into Art

My Grandmother, Glendora, loved to paint. Her medium of choice was oils. She also knew that my Mom loves the ocean. Grandmother took her oil painting skills and transformed an old ammunition trunk.

vintage ammo trunk into art

Grandmother painting the ammo trunk

  • She painted an ocean scene on all sides of the trunk.
  • Added wheels so it could roll.
  • Found glass to fit in the top 2 panels. This glass not only protects the oil paint, but allows Mom to use the trunk to display special seashells or pictures.

Now this vintage ammo trunk is a thing of beauty. Mom has had this ocean trunk in her home for close to 30 years. It is still a piece of art that we all enjoy.

Ammo Trunk turned into Ocean Treasure Box

Ammo Trunk turned into Ocean Treasure Box

My friend Jen (from Jen at Dapperhouse) has done some really cool transformations on furniture. Check out how she is doing Furniture Makeovers using chalk paint – turning something very drab and boring and turning into pieces of furniture that are truly one of a kind art!

Here’s another example of taking an old beat up bedside table and giving it some love and a coat of paint to bring it to life! Check out Newly Wed Survival’s drab to fab – Bedside Table Makeover!

What object have you transformed from ugly junk into a family heirloom? I’d love to hear!

Don’t miss Ideas, Tips and Hobby Inspirations from Hobbies on a Budget!
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About Sharon Williams

Sharon Williams is a mom of 3 who loves to read, travel, take pictures, work in the flowers and spend time with family. When she's not blogging, she's probably out enjoying life so she'll have something fun to blog about tomorrow!


  1. Karen Sizemore says

    My “coffee table” in my family room is an old heavy iron base to a stove. I found it in an outside junk yard in Alabama in the early 80’s. My husband found someone to sand-blast the rust, then spray-painted it black. A carpenter friend cut out a rounded-corner thick plywood for a top, then I purchased some discount fabric and sturdy foam and covered the board. It’s a stool, coffee table, and a foot rest for my guys when they want to prop up their feet. I found a large tray to put on top to hold drinks, etc. At the same time,I also found an old Singer tredle sewing machine base (all of the wood parts and the machine were missing), and did the same steps – sand-blasting, black spray paint, and thick plywood for a table top. It’s now a side table in my family room. I love my coffee and side tables.

  2. Karen Sizemore says

    Niece Girlfriend, you’ve done it again. Seeing that old ammo trunk brings back great memories. I always see it proudly displayed by your mom in a way that shares a little bit of our Mom with folks who come into her home. I presently have an oval 70’s coffee table from my mother-in-law. The top is badly gouged, and I’ve been thinking how to mesh it with my antique furniture in my living room. By George, I think I’ve got it. This summer, I’m gonna milk paint chalk paint?) it, and I believe it will compliment that old oak parlor furniture. Thanks!

  3. says

    That is beautiful. I saw an old piano yesterday that was converted into a flower bed with a water fall flowing over the keyboard, I thought of you! I love turning what others think is garbage into beautiful objects. I can not wait until I can start doing it again, need more time!


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