Have you ever started a project and it turned out completely different then you imagined? Well, that would certainly be the case with this nightstand!
When I had first bought this piece from an auction in Brewerton I had intended to paint the base white and stain the top in a dark stain-sort of similar to pieces you’ve seen around blog land lately, but…that went out the window fairly quickly as you’ll see.
After I sanded and primed the sides, I somehow had this idea to paint the sides green, with big beautiful salmon colored roses! I know where do these ideas come from? No, I don’t do LSD, although sometimes you’d think I did, right! If you were judging solely on my furniture pieces, LOL! Then, I decided a blue fade in the back would look really cool.
This type of faux is really simple. First, line up your paints (you’ve got to be ready to dip). You should probably work with a glaze, (to extend work time for the paint) but because I was working in a small area, I didn’t.
I base coated in one color blue (for me it was the lightest shade), and then worked from the darkest down, fading each color into the next. I don’t even rinse my brush out in between; I just let the colors “melt” into the next while they’re wet.
What’s important with this technique is your wrist motion and hand pressure, everything is flowing and gentle. You want the colors to blend into one other, so don’t apply too much pressure, otherwise you’ll see lines and the paints will become muddy on your brush and canvas.
When all three colors are still wet, rinse your brush out, dab it off a bit (you don’t want drips), go back in and “feather” gently through the areas where the colors meet, softening the lines. This creates a faded/blended look.
I even brought the blue fade into the foot of the piece, just to have balance.
But even with all that...it was at this point that I sat back and went…”WTH!? This does not go together-AT ALL!?” This is where the change came in! I had already applied a crackle finish to the legs too, so that had to all be sanded off as well. Then I just painted everything that was brown-white. Sigh…a lot of extra work but it looked so much better in the end!
Because I had decided to pinstripe the back (bottom) and front in tan & cream I thought I would balance that out and bring the stripe into the top. I didn’t want to do a solid stripe, so opted for a burlap stripe. Again, probably should have used glaze in the paint for this faux (remember people, like I tell my kids, do as I say, not as I do, lol!) but because it was a small area I just worked fast. I taped off my stripes and had at it.
I applied my tan paint and started to rake through in one direction (horizontally) with my Martha Stewart Big Bristle Brush (but you could use any large, whisked brush really, and no Martha didn't pay me to give her a shout out, just got it as a Christmas present and wanted to try it out).
Then I quickly went in the other direction to create a fine linen weave. I loved the look of burlap, but as I sat there looking at it, I felt it just wasn’t done…..It was still too plain for me. Hmmm…I’d seen a lot of crafters doing French labels lately, perhaps I’d try that. So, I jumped on to Graphics Fairy and started looking. Graphics Fairy is the best! They have hundreds, no scratch that, thousands, of amazingly free graphics that you can pick from, to spruce up your projects. Well, you can just imagine how stoked I was when I found one to compliment what I had already started on my piece.
Now, before you go thinking I’m so awesome for drawing this free hand, hold on a minute...I had to rig up this contraption to actually get it on there!
Half on my file cabinet and half on 3 1/2 gallons of paint, the projector was hung down, so the printed out graphic could be blown up and centered onto the middle of the table. I then traced the grapic onto the table top and then painted it in.
I did tweak it just a bit to fit my project (the roses are mine, and the colors are different) but it really was what I was looking for to pull the whole thing together.
Originally this side table (although white & stained) was going to be an Adirondack piece (and the drawers were going to be funky). I had actually painted the drawers first and glued fish to the front of them. I never took them off, but when I was finished I actually thought… “Hugh? This kind of works? “ Soooo, I painted them the same color salmon as the roses and left them alone. I even went as far as to buy crystal knobs instead of covering them up with darker ones. I think it all works in the name of WHIMSY? How about you?
Well, it certainly turned out completely different then I had envisioned it’s actually a different piece then what I usually do all together. Kind of French provincial meets whimsical me! Let that be a lesson…Even big mistakes can turn out to be big accomplishments.
I’m sharing this piece with friends and parties whose links can be found here