Friday, December 30, 2011

To Paint or Not, the Great Debate

Have you ever found that perfect piece of furniture that was in perfect structual condition, maybe all it needs is a fresh stain or shined up a bit? Sometimes you have to make that hard choice "To Paint or Not".  

 This summer I came across that kind of piece.  It was a beautiful vintage "Lane" coffee table. Both ends were dropleaf. Very cooool!!!  After a bit of research I discovered it was from the "Acclaim" dovetail series from 1959 - 1963.  They are very collectable.  Wish I had done my homework before I sold it for a song. This is what I did with this great little table.


I lightly sanded the top & stained it to match the original color.  I didn't want to paint over the cool dovetail detail.  I found the perfect graphic from "The Graphic Fairy".  It's a french post card.  Then I applied a few coats of clear wax.  I just love the way the wood feels after it has been waxed & buffed.

I took this table to the market & had several comments on it.  Most everyone loved what I did to it, but there was the one lady who was a die hard antique lover.  She couldn't believe I had "written all over that beautiful mid century antique!!!"  What can I say, I had a different vision for the table.  I love the way it turned out.  A few hours later another lady came by & had to have it. I even helped her load it in her car.  She was thrilled with it.

A couple of weeks later my mom found the matching side table.  I did the same application on this one.

This one had a bad water spot on the top.  I tried to sand it & restained it, but you can still see it.  I decided it didn't look so bad, it's part of this little tables story. Every antique has a story to tell after all.  I have this table for sale at the"V Trading" in Grand Blanc, MI. if anyone is interested in it.

So have you ever had the "Great Debate" to paint or not?  I would love to hear your opinion or story. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Repurposed Treasures

Through the years I have tried to make a conscious effort to repurpose when ever I can in my work.  A couple of years ago I was looking through a Ballard's catalog for some inspiration & seen a big sign that had a unique shape.  It looked like a headboard.  So I started my search for the perfect shaped headboard to make my sign.  I wanted it BIG. 

I finally found something on Craigs list & brought it home.  It had enormous round posts on either side that were solid wood.  With the help of my hubby, we cut off the monster posts & I had a perfectly shaped sign. 

I wanted it to look old & elegant yet shabbylisious.  I painted, crackled, glazed & distressed this beauty.  Now it hangs proudly in my dining room, right over my clock faced kitchen table (I'll show you that another day).

Here are some pictures of some other repuposed treasures:

vintage sewing machine drawers

old bolt barrels

coffee table top into functional clock

It's very satisfying knowing that when you repurpose you are in some small way making a difference by not sending more junk to our landfills.
Have you repurposed anything cool lately?  I would love to see what treasures you have created.  Have a great day!  Dee 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

This Is the moment that started it all.

This is my very first furniture painting post.  I have been an artist for 30 years a long time now.  I started out doing paintings on canvas for myself, mostly to put on the walls of my apartment because I couldn't afford to buy any thing else.  Then I moved on to painting children's rooms & murals.  Then when faux finish was all the rage I took classes & became "certified" as a professional faux painter.  That kept me busy for about eight years.  I have always dabbled in painting furniture, but since I've discovered chalk paint I have a new passion in painting.  I love the instant gratification you get in painting furniture.  Taking a piece of furniture that has seen better days or, on my lucky day, found on the side of the road & turning it into something so beautiful that it's physically hard to part with.  I'm sure you all know how that feels. 

So enough about me.  Over the summer I seen an ad on Craigs List that I couldn't pass on.  This guy had these old restaurant benches for sale.  As soon as I seen the picture I knew I had to have one or two (now five).

Excuse my messy garage studio.  Still working on that.  These benches are HUGE & heeavyyy.  They are 55" tall x 48" wide.  They have so many possibilities.  I started with two benches & painted them both ASCP Old White.  

After much pondering I decided to try one of the beautiful graphics I found on "The Graphics Fairy". It needed to be really big so I used my overhead projector & a paint pen & painted it all in by hand.  It only took me alllll day.

Now this is about the time my mom thinks I am finished.  No, No, No not yet!  I'm just starting to have fun.  Then I waxed on the clear wax.  Then I sanded & sanded & sanded some more.  Until I made it look like the paint was as old as the bench.  Then I added the dark wax & buffed to perfection.  


Then I reupholstered the cushion in a faux suede in brown with a paisley print embossed on it.


Sorry,  this is the only picture I seem to have in the camera.  I hauled these babies to the local farmers market a few times this fall.  I now have them at a local resale shop in my area.  I will post details on the other bench later.  Well, what do you think?  I have three left to go. What would you do with one?  I would love to hear your ideas.  Have a great day!  Dee