Hello! Here we are heading into another week… we finally have some cooler fall air here in Western Pennsylvania. The weather went from 90 to 55 as if a state trouper was chasing it! (Ok so I stole that from Facebook the other day…it made me chuckle…)
One thing you may not know about me is that I’ve re-vamped a few furniture pieces. I absolutely love a good furniture flip! But the way things have progressed with my business – custom signs, DIY workshops, our BOXED UP subscription membership, stocking the online shop, starting this blog… well, some things just had to go. So, even though I used to take custom furniture requests as well as upholstery projects, I made the decision to take those off the list and only do pieces from my own inventory as time permits. Last weekend I had the opportunity to get started on a vanity desk project I’ve been waiting to have time to squeeze in and, despite the fact that it was hotter than heck outside, it was such a pleasure to be working in fresh air. I’m so lucky to have the ability to work from home and, when I have the chance to work outside on a beautiful day – hot or not (rather than the dreary basement), I’ll take it! I really tried to listen to the sounds of nature. The breezes were blowing and rustling the now crisper leaves and hearing them dance across the ground felt like heaven… even the sounds of the cars passing on our somewhat busy street was something I appreciated hearing. I could hear dogs barking down the road, lawn mowers running, and so much more. It was just me an the vanity and NATURE.
Anyway, in the midst of being so excited to have time to work on a furniture piece (it’s been a looonnggggg while since I’ve done that), I started to reflect on the pieces I’ve done in the past. I thought I’d do a little feature on my favorites! How about I start with the ones that I named!? I didn’t always name my pieces, but once I started, I wished I had always done so… it makes it so much easier to reference them! Plus I put so much work into them that they really do deserve a name. I don’t care what anyone else thinks… furniture with names brings them to life. Furniture with names rock.
Meet Belle the Apothecary Dresser. She was a yard sale find that I couldn’t pass up. I heard her calling me saying “I can be the belle of the ball again! Please just give me a chance!” I used Annie Sloan’s Graphite along with some decoupage on the drawers, some gilding wax, and General Finishes Java Gel on the top. I had a hard time letting her go but she was purchased by a very sweet family and I knew she would be in good hands.
Next is Jasmine. Jasmine needed some work. I found her at a barn sale and she seduced me with her curves. A while down the road, my daughter asked me to check my “inventory” (that’s a fancy word for shed) for something I could make into a vanity. DING DING DING! I did a happy dance when she approved this piece as being “the one.” It was actually a nice mother daughter team effort – Julia helped with the decisions and some of the sanding at the time. I may have done a couple of things differently, but I truly believe the way it turned out is exactly perfect for her room and style. We used General Finishes Gel Stain on the top and it was Annie Sloan for the win again in shades of Florence and Pure White.
And then there was Thelma. Ahh.. Thelma… she, too, was one of my favorites… I had fun trying out a color wash technique on the top. I love the storage she provides. I found this piece at a yard sale in the same neighborhood as Belle! The finishing touches were her pretty new glass knobs.
Of course we can’t have Thelma without Louise! Louise is actually is still hanging out in my basement because the first year I had a booth at Applefest in our local town, my husband and I had a little mis-hap getting her into my vehicle and her front leg broke. And… like I said… it’s hard to find time to fit the furniture in so she’s still waiting patiently for her surgery. But we expect her to make a full recovery and come out stronger when it’s all said and done!
Next up is Elizabeth and she was a Goodwill find. She was one of those I’ll-move-mountains-to-get-her-to-fit-in-my-vehicle-so-that-no-one-else-can-swipe-her-up pieces. She was also one of my biggest transformations! I mean look at those details! One person even said she went from looking like something that would be in her grandmother’s house to something extraordinary! I’m biased, but I agree 100%. Another color wash in lighter colors on the top contrasts with the gray-tan base highlighted with silver gilding wax, dry brushing and waxes. Try to pretend you don’t see that hideous staging wall that sufficed for a while. There may even be a kid behind that sign holding it up because it wasn’t a real wall, it was just a porch blind I’d pull down when I needed to hide all the basement stuff in the background! But it did the trick for quite a while and sometimes ya gotta do what ya gotta do, right? Elizabeth ended up finding a home less than a mile away from me!
How about Miss Daisy? This tiered pie table got layers of colors and then I sanded her to bring those layers out… I just love the colors together on this one!
Last year I took on Annabelle who was made over to use in my basement as we need all the storage we can get down there to hold all of our workshop and other supplies. She’s a really great storage unit! And thought you can’t tell, I added burlap in those four squares as a textural element to contrast the brightness of the rest of the piece. She matches our basement perfectly.
Penelope & Pearl were not related but when they met they immediately formed a bond – they’ve been together ever since.
Aww…speaking of hideous backdrops… check out all of the folds in that vinyl background behind little Tucker! Sheesh! (Hey that reminds me… have you read my very first blog post which is all about how we turned our guest room wall into a faux-brick feature wall (and not using a vinyl backdrop?) Tucker was my grandmother’s dog who reluctantly modeled for me here and he truly did a fabulous job. This dog bed was created with some help from Mr. Home Matters. We took a real twin-size headboard and footboard and made the foam cushion/mattress. It was pretty darn cute if I do say so myself…
This console was one of my best barn sale finds ever! I had a blast making it over with Annie Sloan’s Graphite and Black Wax. Don’t judge me but I’m pretty sure this piece had a name. But I cannot for the life of me remember it. That being said, I have no less love for this piece even today. This was another barn sale find that almost went home with someone else – but that was my lucky day because when that person went to load it into her car, it wouldn’t fit!
Yippee for me! I mean WHAT A BUMMER!
Here’s another piece I found at our local Goodwill by sheer being at the right place at the right time. Remember my rock star photographer friend, Christy, from last week’s China Cabinet re-vamp? Christy asked me to update this server for her dining room. But she wanted to add feet. Never in a million years did I ever foresee myself, the former teacher, not only ordering feet that would work, but then adding them to the bottom all by myself? But I did! Check out the before further down in this post.
This one gets the prize for worst staging ever but it’s got thousands of pins on Pinterest and is by far my most “pinned pin.” I almost kept this one for my bedroom at the foot of my bed… but once again, I let her go, and she found a very loving home.
And then there was this buffet. Funny story… I was dropping a car load of items off at Goodwill for donation one day and this piece had just been dropped off and was sitting outside in front of me with all of the drawers taken out. I begged and pleaded them to let me take it home with me. But they had to follow protocol and I had to wait until it made it’s way out to the “floor”. The manager told me to call back later to see if it had been moved inside yet and priced. I called in the midst of painting another project. When he said it had JUST been taken inside, I literally dropped everything and went to get it. It was so beautiful! And it turned out I had a friend who chose to have this piece custom painted for their dining room (again – back when I offered custom work). My friend chose this beautiful custom color mix between Annie Sloan’s Chateau Grey and Provence followed by Black Wax. The top is General Finishes Walnut Gel Stain.
Okay, so you may be wondering… what did these pieces look like BEFORE? I searched and searched my phone, computer and Facebook. I have not been able to find all of the before pictures but I did find a couple of them plus a few before and afters in which I really showcase my amateur collage making skills. But it’s all I’ve got and I’m sure you get the point.
So, there you have it. It turns out I’ve done way more pieces than I even remembered. Thanks for taking this trip down memory lane. Stay tuned for my latest piece! She needs a name but she’s another vanity and I went bold on this one. Can’t wait to finish her up! Do you have a favorite from the pieces shown in this blog post?