Saturday, July 6, 2013

Painted Chest Reveal

My last post explained why I decided to paint an antique mahogany chest. This is the finished project. I think you will agree that it was the right thing to do.

I am very happy with the way this turned out. It was my first project using chalk paint (I made my own--recipe is below.)

This is the BEFORE photo.  I had started testing my paint on one drawer when I realized I had not taken any photos of the original chest. You can see how the stained finish is badly in need of refinishing. This photo is before I lightly sanded the entire piece.

Notice the missing brass pull on the top left drawer. It disappeared while I was polishing the pulls.  These are antique pulls and very difficult to replace. I have been searching online and have found a few items that might work but none that are an exact match. Makes me very sad. I will have to find a replacement or change all of the pulls. Like I said, it makes me sad.

The arrow is pointing to the missing piece. The rosette and ball are separate on these pulls. Most of the ones  online have this as one piece. It is only the ball that is missing. Sad...

This photo more accurately captures the actual color of the chest.  Teh latex paint was purchased at Lowe's.  I love their Valspar Signature© base paint. It is a paint and primer mix which saves a step and I am a big fan of saving steps. The color I chose is "Dill." It is from the Eddie Bauer© Lakeside Cottage collection. I used an unsanded grout,  mixed with the paint and a bit of water, to make the "chalk" paint.  The grout color is "magnolia" and is a very dark green. I was happily surprised that it didn't change the color too much.  

This tray is painted with the chalk paint. Notice that it is a much brighter color than the chest. There are two reasons for that. When I lightly sanded the chest and wiped it down with a damp cloth, some of the stain dust must have remained on the chest. As I painted the chest, I picked up a bit of  the stain in each brush stroke. It toned down the brightness a bit and gave nice depth to the color. Happy accident!  I toned it down a bit more by using Valspar© "Mocha" translucent glaze on the dry paint. I brushed the glaze on and then took a cloth and wiped it off; similar to how I would use a stain.  

The next step was to lightly distress the piece with a fine grain sandpaper. The final step was hand waxing the entire piece with Minwax© Paste Finishing Wax. I used the Natural color.  This photo and the next one show the nice sheen from the wax and some of the lightly distressed areas. 

 I have had the antique pub table for 30+ years. It was in my art studio at the farm. I think it works really well in this area. I bought four ladder back chairs (not the ones in this photo)  last month at the Old Dixie Highway yard sale. Four for $50.00! They need some work and I am trying to decide whether to paint them or re-stain them. If I do paint them, I am wondering what color to use. Any ideas?

I am really, really happy with this piece.  My nephew, who told my husband not to let me do this (see previous post,) changed his mind completely when he saw the way it turned out.

Now, if I could just find that little piece of hardware....

Recipe for the paint:  For each cup of latex paint, add 1-2 tablespoons unsanded grout. I used a plastic paint bucket with measurement markers to mix the paint. The paint will continue to thicken while you are using it unless you work pretty quickly. Add water as needed to thin the mixture to the consistency you want.

Until next time....

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Long Story, Short

I have missed blogging.  It has been a long time since I have posted...over a year!  Working full time does not leave much time for expressing myself through my blog. Hopefully, I will get myself better organized soon and will have more time to do the things I love.

I did want to share a project that I recently finished. I used to spend a good bit of time refinishing antique furniture. One of the pieces that I refinished, probably 30 years ago, has now had a complete make-over. It is a mahogany serpentine chest of drawers.  I used it our bedroom for years but when we bought a new bed several years ago, it didn't really fit well and the chest was moved to the basement and then out to our shed; where it sat, covered and unloved for a few years.I was tempted to sell it when we moved but something held me back. I am really glad now that I didn't sell it.

The kitchen in this house is large but the cabinets are not as spacious as the cabinets in the farm house kitchen.  This left me needing a place to store some things like flat baking pans, storage bags and food wrap, etc. I looked online and everywhere I could think of to find a baker's rack or some sort of kitchen cabinet or an island that was not too much money. All of the ones that I liked were more than I wanted to spend for a our temporary stay in this rental house. That left me wondering if I already had something I could use. I started digging through the furniture we have stored in the garage and decided to use the mahogany chest. The problem was that the finish was in need of sanding and re-staining and I didn't like the mahogany finish with the oak and pine in the kitchen. So, I started thinking about painting the chest. I have been reading a lot about chalk paint and how easy it is to use and I have admired some of the results I have seen in various blog posts. This was a really tough decision for me. I have always had an aversion to painting furniture made of good wood. Primarily because I have stripped so much paint off of furniture in the past (not an easy job, any way that you do it) that the thought of painting good wood just seemed wrong. It didn't help that my nephew who also collects antiques, told my husband not to let me do it!  What to do, what to do?

I found a  recipe online to make chalk paint.  It called for mixing either Plaster of Paris or Unsanded Grout with flat latex paint. It sounded easy enough. I gave it a good bit more thought and then headed to Lowe's to buy some paint and grout.

Since this was supposed to be a long story, short, I will give you the actual details of how I accomplished my project in my next post, where I will share the before and after photos.  I really love how it turned out. I think you will agree it was the right thing to do.

Will post again very soon!

Until then...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Tribute to a Wonderful Dad

Hoping all the fathers out there are having a great Father's Day!  I wanted to share something my husband posted on Facebook today. I think it is a beautiful and touching tribute to his dad.  His dad did a good job in raising up his son to be a godly man and good provider for his children.  He is a hard working,  over all wonderful man. I could go on and on about his attributes but I think reading this will show how blessed I to be his wife. Now here's what he had to say about his dad:

"It has been over 30 years since God needed a dependable , honest to a fault, God fearing man to join him in heaven. I still miss you after all these years, you had me late in life, but still took the time to teach me all about baseball, its history and beauty. I learned to take chances, watch and learn from mistakes and to look for the good in everyone and everything. You encouraged me to follow a dream and not look back. You watched patiently when I failed and were always there to pick me up, brush myself and keep going. You taught me responsibility and to do everything possible for the good of my family. Others always came first in your eyes and you managed to raise 8 of us with a firm loving hand. I moved far away and was not there at the end but I always knew I was in your thoughts as you were in mine. I loved you then and I love my memories of you now. Happy Fathers day dad, I know your watching."