Sunday, November 24, 2013

An Enchanted Bedroom

 Janine is creative, talented and energetic....
a winning combination that has blossomed into a successful business
of children's clothing and accessories.  
 She's getting ready for her holiday trunk showing,
and it's adorable.

If you have little ones, or need a gift for one,
you'll enjoy visiting Janine at Pigtails and Pearls 
to see all her wonderful creations.

Who could resist these sweethearts!


 
 
I had the pleasure of helping Janine put the finishing touches
 on an Enchanted Bedroom for the youngest of her three girls.
 
When I first saw the room, it looked lovely.... 
more like a stylish guest room
than a "big-girl" bedroom for a two year old.

What could I possibly add to it?

 

 
But Janine had a vision, and the client is always right! 
 She wanted an Enchanted Room,
 one with a big ol' gnarled tree filling one wall,
and a frog prince perched on a mushroom.
 
 

 School was out the day I painted, so I had company while I worked. 
One of the girls drew a castle for the frog-prince, while I painted the tree.
 
 
 
Both big sisters loved the frog,
but it was the youngest daughter's reaction to him that was priceless. 
 
She walked into her room and spun around so fast
that she blurred the camera lens!
 
She loved her new room and couldn't stop touching the frog!
Now, instead of wanting to sleep with her big sisters each night,
she is eager to sleep in her own room.
 
Such a cutie!
 
 
 
In a few short hours we went from this
 

 

to this....
complete with a fairy for Good Luck!
 



 
Thank you girls for letting me play at your house!

Enjoy!




Sunday, November 17, 2013

3 Great Silvers

As cooler color palettes are becoming increasingly popular,
many of my clients are asking for their furniture to be painted silver.
 
Shelter magazines and catalogues have us drooling
over stunning rooms that glow with a mellow silver shimmer.
 
Oh yes, we want this! 
 

 

And this, too, please! 
 

 


But like any color, silver has a variety of tones. 
 And getting it right is important.  It's not a one-size-fits-all color.

Let me share with you a recent MISTAKE I made.
 
Earlier this year, I painted a small game table for a client.

She wanted her table to resemble a distressed silver table seen in a local shop.
So I painted her table just like the one we saw,
with the silver paint sanded back to reveal both black and wood.

Here's what I did.
 
 
Initially the table looked nice in her taupe, brown and black family room.
 
BUT,
a single fabric choice made the table look all WRONG!
The black fabric had a birds-eye fleck of gold.
 
When the chairs and accessories arrived,
the table looked out of place in the room.
Why didn't I snap a photo of this?
....guess I was too surprised and trying to figure out what to do!
 
To fix the problem, I chose another silver,
one that had a warmer tone.
I brushed it over the entire surface.
and highlighted the trim with a little bit of Gold Rub -n- Buff.
 


 
Now, it looks much better.



If you're thinking SILVER,
may I share 3 terrific ones with you?

1. MARTHA STEWART Thundercloud -- a deep pewter grey
2.  MODERN MASTERS  Warm Silver -- works well with gold
3. FAUX EFFECTS Charred Silver -- a mid-grey works well with taupe and beige



 
The fun begins when you start layering colors.
 
By nature metallic paints tend to be sheer. 
Use that to your advantage by first painting with a base color,
then brushing on the metallic.
It will give you depth and complexity.
 
The example on the left side of the photo began with Warm Silver
that was then washed in grey.
The right side began with BLACK, then brushed with silver for a distressed effect.
 



There are so many lovely metallic colors out there,
and so many possibilities.

Experiment, and have fun with the paint.
I know your furniture will look lovely!

Enjoy!
 




Sunday, November 10, 2013

An Easy Way to Create an Antique Mirror

 
Some of you may recall those gold veined mirror tiles from the 1970's.

Either you installed them in your home,
and thought they were wa-a-a-ay cool,
or
 you later purchased that home
and couldn't wait to tear them off the wall!

Well, they're back.
Sort of.

This time, the mirrors are antiqued, giving a vintage look,
that somehow seems more interesting and fresh.

houzz.com
houzz.com
A few years ago, I experimented with the patina process
by adding mirrors to the cabinet doors in my laundry.



It was a messy, stinky project.
Since then, I've done mirrors for client's homes
and several restaurants.
BUT 
It remains a messy, stinky project.
I decided to find a better faster and easier way.

I had a can of KRYLON LOOKING GLASS on the shelf.
that was used to create some Mercury Glass.


Could I use it to make an antique mirror?

YES INDEED!
This is so easy and the results (to me) are as effective
as using chemical patina solutions.

1. Use clean, dry glass. 
Spray glass with a vinegar + water solution


2.  Immediately spray the wet glass with KRYLON LOOKING GLASS. 
(3  light coats recommended for maximum shine)



3. Blot with a paper towel.


4. Peek at the front of the glass to see how your mirror will look.




5.  Spray paint over the KRYLON LOOKING GLASS
with your choice of paint.
 I used blackened bronze, but black or grey would look great too.
Feeling creative?  Try a color!



6. Let the paint dry - then admire your work.


 Enjoy!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

4 Tips for Better Furniture Painting



 People often ask what my favorite project is. 
And my answer is always the same, "The one I just finished!" 
I love that "ahh-h-h moment" when I step back to see how things turned out
and feel a sense of satisfaction.
These pieces were completed this afternoon and will be delivered tomorrow. 
But they didn't always look so cute! 


 

                             

They came to me like this,


and brought their friend, a dresser, with them.



This is well-made Drexel furniture in a style often called French Provincial,
  because of its curvy lines and delicate legs. 
Made of solid wood, this furniture was well worth the effort
of repainting and repurposing.

In the end it looked like this, but getting there took a bit of finesse.

 

What colors did I use?





I know that many of you enjoy painting furniture,
and  many more of you want to join in the fun.

May I share a few furniture painting tips with you?

These are a few things I do automatically.
 I hope they will help speed you along with your project.



1.  Protect drawers by placing them in plastic garbage bags.

This is especially important if you spray your furniture.  Over spray or drips inside the drawer look amateurish.   Run some blue tape on the sides and inner edges of the drawer, then slip the drawer into a garbage bag.  Use more blue tap to secure the bag against the taped edges.  It's quicker than trying to wrap each one in plastic sheeting.






2.  Use plastic to test for smoothness. 

I learned this from a dear friend who does snazzy, high-end automotive painting.

After sanding, things may look smooth to the eye.  They may feel smooth to the touch.

But put your hand in a plastic shopping bag or vinyl glove, and run it over the surface.  You'll feel every nub and edge that will haunt you later! 

This "boo-boo" was on the top of the dresser.




But the problem vanished!




3.  Paint details with a 3/4" or 1" artist's flat brush.
This brush is my best friend!  Pull the full span of the bristles against the molding profile for a nice, clean edge.  No tape necessary!


Or use the flat side to highlight edges.


It's always the right size for the job.




4.  Keep a WET EDGE
Whether you're painting detail on a piece of furniture or the trim on your doors, always paint from DRY INTO WET.   The paint blends back into itself to create a smooth continuous layer and you won't see any stop and start brush marks.
                   



Hope this helps with your projects.





 Enjoy!  

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