Saturday, January 18, 2014

China Cabinet -colors inspired by kantha blanket arm chairs-

 
I was commissioned to paint this china cabinet by a wonderful gal, Wendy. The cabinet was a hand-me-down from her mother, so she really wanted to keep it, but told me that she couldn't stand the way it looked. Wendy said it needed "funkification" and that I was just the one to do it.
Awwwee... isn't she sweet? She thinks I have funky talent! Warms my heart.
 
 
Wendy had just moved into a new house and gave me pictures of her new living room space. It was a REALLY nice home on the waterfront and I could tell she had an eye for artsy-fartsy, eclectic styles. JUST. LIKE. ME. So I knew we would get along. 
Then she showed me two new arm chairs that she just bought and I LOVED them!
(Confirming we should probably be designer BFFs.)

These awesome kantha blanket arm chairs gave me my inspiration for the cabinet's color palette.
 
 
I had to sand some parts of the cabinet and tape off the glass door to prep for paint.
But first, the primer of course.

 
After painting the side a light, celery green, I taped it off to create the diamond pattern.
TIP: remember to measure your center points so you can align your tape placement accordingly.
This ensures your pattern is also centered.

 
Here's the photo progression...


Seal tape; paint other parts while seal is bonding.


 
And tah-dahhhh... oh wait... what the?!!
While I did a GREAT job sealing my tape in the middle, I totes forgot to seal the edges! uhggggguh!

 
So ya, I guess I'm human after all. Shoot. 
Had to go back around all my edges and fix my time consuming, nearly-fubared mess.
 
But I eventually got it all back in order... and added a few coats of semi-gloss poly.
 
A new shiny glass knob
 
And this Junk has been Sophisticated!


 
Thanks for looking!
 
 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Wallpapered Dresser -A How To-


I started with this antique highboy. 
It has a serpentine top drawer, which is why I really liked it,
 but it also has long, boring, flat sides. 
I decided to add some decorative, textured wallpaper to the sides to give them more personality. 


Here's how...
Supplies needed: 
Textured wallpaper that is pre-pasted and paintable. 
I used wallpaper with a pattern called "Ceiling Tile." 
You need a bucket filled with warm water, big enough to dip the wallpaper in.
Also, scissors,
a sharp knife or razor, 
ruler or measuring tape, 
a sponge or lint-free cloth,
paper and something to write with (I have a tendency to forget my measurements immediately after measuring, I know this about me, I've learned to accept it, so now I write everything down), 
and something with a strong, flat edge to smooth out the bubbles (I used a ruler). 

After measuring the side area on the dresser, add 1/2" on every side. 
You will need to cut the width by measuring from the center of the wallpaper (the middle of the pattern), out to the edges, so your pattern will be symmetrical after you cut it. 
Don't forget to add an extra 1/2" to the length too. Better to cut too big than too small.

Mark the center point on the dresser so you can line up the center of the pattern with it.

Then you will want to fill your bucket with warm water (the paste sets faster with warm water).

Submerge the entire piece of paper for about 30 seconds.

Take it out and lay it so that the paste sides are touching and leave it for about 5 minutes.

TIP: You will want to either prime the wood with wallpaper primer or scuff them up with sandpaper so the paste sticks really well.

Then stick it on the dresser and smooth it out. When you smooth it out, paste will squeeze out of the edges. Wipe it off with a moist lint-free cloth or sponge. You don't want the excess paste to dry there! 

Make sure to get the edges pressed really well. 
TIP: This is why you let your paper sit for 5 minutes on the counter. It will become more and more tacky the longer it sits. If you find that your edges are not sticking, it's probably because you didn't let the paper sit long enough. If this happens, you may need to hold it in place, pressing firmly. 
Next time, let it sit for a bit longer. Maybe up to 10 minutes.

You don't want to trim the edges while the paper is wet or it will pull and rip. So, leave it to dry overnight.

While my wallpaper was drying...
I chose to make some needed repairs to the dresser.

Do you see the difference between these two pictures?

The first picture is missing the metal drawer stop and the second photo is missing the drawer runner (that long piece of wood meant to hold the drawer in place, and level, so it doesn't fall in the back). 


First I tackled the drawer runners:

Both sides were missing but luckily, 
I had the runners so I just sanded the old glue off and glued them back in place.


Then I came up with my own drawer stop. I cut off a piece of wooden cabinet trim and glued it in place. 
It was the same height as the metal stop so it worked perfectly.

Next I removed the handles and metal key hole coverings. Usually, I replace hardware, but these were made of aluminum and I really liked them. They reminded me of an owl-faced Mardi Gras mask.

I took off the back decorative piece to paint it separately, for a cleaner look.

TIP: I like to keep all the small screws/nails in an old prescription bottle, in a bag with the rest of the hardware.
I also put the screwdriver in it so I don't have to find that size again. 
Also, if I'm working on several different dressers at one time, I write down on a small piece of paper which dresser the hardware belongs to, so I don't get them mixed up, and throw that in the bag too.
Remember, my memory is... not the best. 

I taped off the locks and sides of the drawers. Then painted primer on the whole thing.


After the primer was dry, I decided to give the drawer fronts an added design.



OHHHHH KAAAAAAYY...
I was done for the night.


Next day my wallpaper was dry and I needed to trim the edges.
I used the ruler to cut it straight.

TIP: If your trim job isn't neat and tidy, you can run some caulking along the edges. 
When it's dry and you paint over it, the edges will look professionally smooth.


Then paint!
 I had to use a small bristle brush to get into the tiny crevices of the decorative top piece.

I used semi-gloss polyurethane on the entire dresser to protect the paint.

TIP: Because poly turns yellow if it's applied too thick, especially on light colored paint, lightly wipe the brush on a piece of paper before wiping it on the wallpaper. This way there won't be any excess poly ending up in the groves of the texture, and turning yellow.
Also, when applying poly to deep texture, such as this wallpaper, make sure to apply it in every direction, NOT just in one direction as you normally would. 

I applied three coats on the body of the dresser, and four coats on the drawer fronts and top of the dresser.
Once all dry, I put the hardware back on.


And voila! 
Sophisticated Junk!



Thanks for looking!!!







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