, , , , , ,

Gold pictures frames get a makeover

Yesterday I worked on my powder room. It wasn’t a big renovation (although I would love to take out the mirror, replace the lights, and add glass tile down the vanity wall – but that’s for the future). All I did was paint a few pictures, a small little table and hang a fabulous shelf I found at a consignment shop.

First things first – I had to remove pictures I had hung in there when we moved into this house. They’re about 10 years old, and each were framed in gold frames. I like the botanical prints inside – just have outgrown those gold frames. In removing them, I had a few little holes to patch in the walls. A quick slab of joint compound, some light sanding and a coat of our original wall color (another thing to change sometime soon), and we were back in business.

The picture frames got a coat of in Old White. Just one coat and no wax (Why no wax? There’s very little potential for the frames to see any touch of water, so a seal isn’t needed). To distress, all I had to do was dampen a cloth and rub over the raised edges. The paint came right off. We actually worked on this technique at the Annie Sloan workshop I attended in Leesburg. They provided us with a gold, gilded piece of trim work. My frames were very similar with their detailing, so I pulled out my notes and proceeded with the same steps.

Next I quickly painted a small little table I keep in the bathroom to hold toilet paper and tissues. This got a coat of Duck Egg Blue, clear wax and distressing. I went with the blue, as I want that to be my accent color in the tiny little room. I hope to pick up some pretty little hand towels the next time I am out in that same color. Shouldn’t be too difficult – since summer is upon us it seems every retailer is pushing nautical and beach decor themes and gorgeous shades of blue are in abundance.

After everything was painted and my bathroom wall was dry – which took all of 5 minutes because the space, which is about the size of a catholic confessional, heats up like a sauna when the door is closed – I hung the shelf. This was no small feat. Each iron bracket is heavy and had 6 screws to anchor them to the wall. I had to measure the wall, measure the distance between the two brackets and figure out how to space it smack dab in the middle. That required math. MATH.

After 20 minutes of thinking and making pencil marks on my wall I was ready to drill anchor holes. Slapped in those plastic wall anchors, and used hubby’s big boy electric screwdriver. I felt so Holmes on Homes!

Here you can see what the largest frame used to look like.

And here’s the “before” for one of the smaller frames…

Here they are all finished up! The white gives them a softer, more feminine feeling.

And here’s the shelf hanging happily in the powder room.

And the small pictures on the back wall.

And a close up of the iron brackets. Love the chippy paint! I did not paint these – found this shelf with the included brackets at a consignment shop. It’s from Pottery Barn, so I’m sure you could grab the same thing off the internet.

There ya have it. Another project checked off my to-do list!

, , , , ,

The ugly duckling turned swan

Two weeks ago while scouring a thrift store for things to paint, I spied a sad little table in a corner. It had a slightly crooked leg, and peculiar top – that looked perfectly straight from one angle and slightly bowed from another. It was scratched, dinged and frankly, ugly.  Take a look.

But, it was just five bucks.  Into the truck she went, and home she came to a paint job.

The ugly little ducking still has a crooked leg and bowed top, but isn’t she looking more like a swan now? Speaking of ducks – it’s painted with ASCP in duck egg blue, over old white, with clear wax. And a touch of distressing here and there. For just $5 and a little paint, it makes a cute little addition to a small space. Wouldn’t you agree?

, , , , , , , , ,

My first Annie Sloan chalk paint piece

As soon as I got home from the workshop, I bought myself some Annie Sloan chalk paint from my 2 local stockiest – On a Whim in Lucketss, VA and The Empty Nest, located inside Fox Den Antiques in Warrenton, VA. I purchased a quart of Duck Egg Blue, French Linen and Old White. I also grabbed a sample container of Paris Grey. My bounty was not complete without a can of clear wax and dark wax.

Later, I headed to Lowe’s and purchased natural bristle brushes (for painting), lint-free wiping cloths (for wiping away excess wax), sandpaper (for distressing), mineral spirits (for cleaning the wax brushes – soap & water cleans the paint brushes), and a drop cloth (to preserve the floor in my husband’s man cave, a.k.a. the garage).

With all that loot, I was ready to begin painting. My first piece was this box I found at a local consignment shop. I purchased it with the intention of painting it, as I love the shape of the box, but am not fond of the sunflower and checkerboard design. It isn’t the best quality – a little beat up, but kind of cute, right?

So, the first thing I did was give the exterior a coat of Old White. I slapped it on, as Annie directs, in every which way.  When it dried, I then painted the inside Duck Egg Blue. Already I discovered my first mistake – I should have painted the inside first. It was quite difficult to paint inside (as the little doors do not come off), and not get paint on some of the newly painted white parts. And – I need to invest in a smaller, artist-type paint brush for little areas like the strip of wood down the middle. But, after this struggle, it got much easier.
I let it dry and gave the exterior a coat of French Linen. Waited a short bit, and then it was ready to wax. I started with the clear wax over the entire thing – inside and out. After I applied it with the wax brush, I used my cloths to rub it in, and remove any excess. It felt smooth and dry to the touch. 
Next, I got out course sand paper, and distressed it on all sides. Since this piece was a bit rough to begin with, I decided to give it a lot of distressing, and really age it. So, the next step was to apply dark wax, so it could seep into those distressed areas and imperfections. After I rubbed off the excess (which you coincidentally do with the clear wax – pretty nifty trick!), I again gave it a final coating of clear wax. Then I lightly buffed it.
Here’s the transformed box:
I’m not sure where I will keep this little bugger yet in my house. And to be honest, there’s not a whole lot of little things I have to display inside. This might make a good piece hung on the wall with thimbles inside or something else of that little nature. Any other ideas? Feel free to share!

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Beautiful furniture on display at the workshop

Before I get down to the nitty-gritty of what I learned, I wanted to share images I took of the furniture that was on display at the workshop. It was held at The National Conference Center, and these pieces were displayed in one of their lobbies. I eagerly snapped shots, but should have taken notes on who did each piece – so for that I apologize in advance to the person who did the first piece below.

This was by far my favorite piece in the room. Look at her French loveliness! Oh how I hope to find a deal on something like this one day. Well, this or an amazing hutch.

Here’s some more beauties…The yellow dresser was done by the girls at Hue-ol-ogy.

This lovely chair and hutch were painted by Amy from Gallery on Third. Even the fabric was painted using a stencil on a drop cloth material! She said she just couldn’t find a fabric she liked, so she created her own! Ingenious!

These little tables and armoire were painted by Celeste at On a Whim (in Lucketts for all you Northern VA friends!) I am so in LOVE with the duck egg blue color!

I could totally see this contemporary color combination in my front living room! Love the Emperor’s Silk Red with the black and white fabric! This was done by Terry at Budget Redesign.

Here’s a closeup showing you the distressing detail of another one of my favorite pieces from
BB Home. Love!

And finally, here’s a folksy-fun piece painted by Janet from another local Northern Virginia ASCP stockiest, The Empty Nest.