With simple curves, gorgeous cabriole legs, beauty and design, functionality and an antique provenance (had to get a little French in there :), this lovely old three drawer chest was so worthy of a makeover. It is a nice heavy piece, walnut, and possesses hand made features. But, and this was a big But, she had not survived the years gracefully. There were gouges in her beautiful wood and badly worn and warped veneer. Normally, I would not paint a piece like this, but having to make repairs and take off the veneer, I decided that it was okay this time.
After a thorough cleaning, because little bits of evidence made me think she had been stored in a barn somewhere for years, I filled in the gouges with wood filler and sanded, sanded, and sanded some more. I am a glutton for punishment and prefer to do all my painting by hand. I like to see the brush strokes and evidence of hand work. It was given three coats of white paint after the primer. This wonderful old piece had gorgeous surface mount brass key surrounds which meant I could not remove them for painting so I had to use a tiny brush for painting around them......not fun!
If possible, I turn my pieces upside down. A compromising position :) but that way I can see any drips or spatters I may have missed. See the beautiful dovetail joinery? You can tell it's made by hand because of the uneven cuts. Fabulous! And love that curvy front apron.
Wanting to give it just a little bit more pizzazz and interest, I painted just a light French blue wash on the drawer fronts only. On each side, using Pratt and Lambert paint pot samples of a very light pink, green and blue, I painted double oval encased simple pink rosebud stems. Wishing for just a light antiquing effect, I went over the entire piece with a maple glaze. A little sanding on the drawer edges and feet for wear and a coat of beeswax finished it off.
When removing the drawer pulls, I was delighted to find them stamped and dated on the reverse side. With one missing, I filled in with a glass ribbed crystal pull, loving the effect and whimsy of two totally different textures.
And with that, 2012 projects have begun. I think she is perfect for the farm house decor, the romantic shabby decor, the cottage look, or the French chic happening. N'est-ce pas? It's heading to my booth at Midlothian Antiques Mall asap. I will be going out later this week to look at new sofas, rugs, and other fun stuff. I am thinking of buying a shag rug! Can you believe that? Thirty five years ago I threw out our red shag rug that you had to rake. :) Have a wonderful week and talk soon. xoxo
P.S. I forgot to show you what I found in a drawer of this piece. Is this not the cutest, so charming and loaded with glorious worn patina? This old chalk ware Scottie dog is from the 1930's. Poor baby....his black paint is wearing off, revealing the warm creamy chalk and somewhere on his adventures, he lost his tail. But never mind, he still wags his whole backside. Just listed in the online shop for your collection.
Joining these blogs and their fabulous parties this week. Go take a peek at all the inspiration and fun.
WIW at Ivy & Elephants,
LaurieAnna's Farmhouse Friday, Potpourri Friday at 2805, Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage, Vintage Inspiration Wednesday at A Very Merry Vintage Style, Open House Thursday at No Minimalist Here
Pink Saturday at How Sweet the Sound,
and a new party has joined the blogging world, Joy of Savvy City Farmer is hosting Thriftn' on a Thursday