Thursday, May 31, 2012

Victorian Desk

Here is a desk I painted this past week for a local client here in Vegas. This was a pretty desk to begin with but the Victorian dark cherry wood is starting to be outdated. It has been repainted in Old White and Louis Blue Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, toned down with some Old white as well. It has new hardware too- I felt like this was a must for this desk. The top I wanted to leave wood, as it had an amazing wood pattern and I didn't want to cover it. But this desk wasn't going down without a fight. I think I had to strip it 3 times before I could even touch the shiny finish on top. I stained it with Minwax English Chestnut and the top is protected with wipe-on polyurethane.

Linking back to...

Friday, May 25, 2012

Verdigris Tutorial

   Here it is, the promised Verdigris 'Faux like a Pro' tutorial. I knew I wanted to do something old-world style. I get most of my best ideas from objects or architecture. Now I look at an old spoon or painted pot differently. I often ask myself "I wonder if I can duplicate that color scheme or look."

    I certainly can't take all the credit for my wonderful dresser, like I mentioned I got a lot of my inspiration from Shelly, check out her cute blog. I found her picture through Google- I felt like out of all the faux verdigris picture, hers looked the most realistic to me.

   I prepped my piece with the usual simple green solution to clean off the old dirt and grime, then a little sanding here and there. Then I spray painted the entire piece with gold spray paint. I was hoping to go for a darker, more copper or bronze look, but the store I went to was out. It was one of those days I wasn't going to take another trip to the store. My husband was digging just the gold look. Sorry honey, that's just not my style :)

   I chose to use Provence and Antibes Green Annie Sloan Chalk Paint. They looked very similar to Shelly's colors to me and I already had them on hand. I began working in sections by dabbing green and blue spots everywhere.  I was careful to use a dry brush technique and wipe off my brush on the side of the can. I noticed too much of the paint was a problem. I tried to do more blue than green but I think I really kept mixing in green until I felt I had the color I liked. I used an old small 1/2 in craft brush from the Wal-mart. Nothing fancy. Then I just did crazy dabbing all different directions. After I had the whole dresser sufficiently covered and then paint was dry I was ready for the next step.

Shelly mentions using Gesso. Gesso is a white chalky paste used to prime canvases and other surfaces for oil or acrylic paint. Hmmm... it sounded a lot like chalk paint to me. (Small side note: I looked it up on the Web and found out that was using it to paint furniture. I just bought some to try out for myself). I didn't have any Gesso at the time, so I just watered down my ASCP Old White and brushed it on everywhere.  Before it completely dried, I used a spray bottle with water and misted the top coat. Then I just dabbed some of the excess water off. I really loved they way some parts looked with a dripping white film. It reminded me so much of what rain would do to a statue over time. When the white was dry, I used a a copper glaze, covering the whole piece in sections. I would quickly wipe away the glaze with a clean damp rag.

When it was all dry, I applied clear wax and did a small amount of distressing. I loved the darker brown color to show through but I also didn't like that you could tell it was wood so I kept the distressing to a small amount. This whole process was fairly quick and didn't take me much more time then a regular paint job would.

I'm going out of town for a few days up to Wyoming to visit some family. My dad is a great photographer and I'm hoping he can teach me to get a great shot. I'd love a beautiful horse photo to have printed on canvas and hung as art in my home. Come back to see my photos on Tuesday. Also tomorrow with the help of my husband, I will have some pics of a desk I finished today.


Linking back to...

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A Bold Color

I've had this unopened can of paint in my garage for awhile. I was planning on using it for a patio set I have yet to paint but just couldn't think of how to use it. What color is it? ASCP Antibes Green! It is just one of those colors that is a little out of my comfort zone. We all have those, it doesn't mean I don't like it. Besides seeing a green with black, I struggle. I found this cute bench/ chest at the thrift store and knew it would be a good choice. I had to strain my eyes to see all the potential buried in there. It had clearly been used as a toy chest for a many a year, so it was disgusting. Trust me when I say DISGUSTING. I worked in a veterinary clinic and I still had to put gloves on to touch this baby. I swear there were some buggies on there, some jam, some gum, and some sort of spilled liquid on the bottom.

Once it was all cleaned up, I skipped sanding any peeling stained areas because I wanted to have a layered look. I just love how the dark wax settles in the rough parts.
I can just picture it at the end of some child's bed, under a window as a seat or perhaps in a mud room as a place to sit while you take off your shoes.

I always complain that I don't have time to paint my own projects. Today I went for it and bit the bullet. I bought this pie safe on Craigslist months ago with plans to repaint it. We have a small pantry and needed some more room to hold canned food items. I think that that dark forest green has had it's time and needs to move on.

I applied a thin layer of ASCP in Coco and then a dry brushed over it with ASCP Louis Blue. I would have never originally though of putting these colors together if it weren't for an unfortunate armoire painting experience. Don't you love to learn from your mistakes?

Linking back to...

Sunday, May 20, 2012



Ver... what, you ask? Let me give you a hint or two.

Verdigris: the common name for a green pigment obtained through the application of acetic acid to copper plates or the natural patina formed when copper, brass, or bronze is weathered and exposed to air or seawater over a period of time.

I just can't get enough verdigris in my life right now; it gave me the inspiration for my dresser I'm about to show you. I think this has to be my all time favorite piece thus far. I understand if you're not loving it, I think it's one of those things you'll either love or hate.

This beautiful patina just reminds me of beautiful old architecture, grand gardens by the ocean, and just an old European lifestyle (if you happened to be rich).

This past winter I had the chance to go to Miami on a getaway with my husband and daughter. I was so surprised at how much there was to see there. We went to Villa Vizcaya, which is a lovely old mansion, but unfortunately no pictures of the inside are allowed. It's right by the sea and it's built in the style of old European architecture. The outside has grand paved stone walkways with large statues, garden houses, acres of gardens, and water fountains, not to mention a large stone boat off the dock about right behind the home. The inside has the finest furniture, and all of it was purchased in Europe and shipped overseas. If you're ever in Miami, I highly recommend it.

Here are a few pictures of our trip- we didn't get the chance to take too many. I was loving every second of the tour but my two year old daughter didn't seem to be enjoying herself as much. You know how it goes.

I hope I've built up enough suspense now that you're dying to see my latest and greatest transformation.

How did I do this? I found a really helpful tutorial here. I'll write my own tutorial for this dresser soon (Update: here's my tutorial).

This dresser really got my creative and artistic juices flowing again since I feel like I just paint things white after white. Don't get me wrong an old out of date piece always looks amazing in a simple white. I just needed a little challenge and some change to mix things up!

Linking back to...

Friday, May 18, 2012

Lovin the Hutch

I finished up a really neat hutch this week. I just love the shape of this piece and it already came with wire in it. It's the little things that make me happy. I painted it in Old White/Paris Grey and finished it off with some dark wax.

This week I've felt like a chicken running around with her head cut off. My hubby has been studying for his dental board exams that he's taking today. It's a pretty big deal. I feel like he's been non-existent while studying and I'm here fending for myself. I didn't realize how much I use his help until he's not here! Isn't that always the case? He picks up all my furniture for me and handles a ton of my business. I made it through all my work (mostly), laundry, cooking, cleaning, keep up with church jobs, and then some. We all know how much work it takes to keep our own little world running smoothly and on a routine.


Linking back to...

Saturday, May 12, 2012

A Country Side Table

Here's a simple country style end table I finished painting yesterday. It was just your typical oak table that I found at a thrift store. I thought I could spruce it up with a hand painted top. I got the laurel wreath with PARIS typography from The Graphics Fairy, one of mine, and several other thousand people's favorite blog. Head on over if you've never seen it. Prepare to be amazed.

This beauty will be for sale in my Shop so be sure to check it out.


Linking back to...

Thursday, May 10, 2012

For A Special Little Girl

I don't know about you, but I can spend several hours looking on Etsy. The clothes, jewelry, art, and of course furniture are just some of my favorites. I was asked to paint a dresser similar in style to one in the shop Tracey's Fancy. If you haven't seen her work, you should definitely check it out. She does tons of crazy cool furniture and it almost always has handpainted designs and bright colors. I was honored to be asked to paint something to look like hers. Why ask me and not the girls at Tracey's? She is booked out for custom painting for 16 weeks! That would stress me out. Clearly everyone loves her to-die-for designs.

Here is where my client got her inspiration. This dresser is for a baby girl on the way so naturally the colors chosen were a classic pink and ivory. I painted the whole thing with Old White chalk paint first, then used Henrietta (with Old White mixed in to lighten it up) to paint on the designs and accents. I hate to copy someone else's work, so my husband and I quickly made up our own monogram design for the sides of the dresser.

I sure hope she likes it, or I'll have to find someone else who is having a baby girl starting with the letter F :)


Linking back to...