Tuesday, March 27, 2012

DIY chalk paint

Updated DIY Chalk paint  

SO after much research I have revised my formula for DIY chalk paint. I now use Calcium Carbonate in a powder form. I buy it at my local health food store for like $5.99 ( see pic below). Here is the new formulation. BE SURE YOU MIX CALCIUM WITH A FEW DROPS OF WARM WATER BEFORE ADDING TO PAINT, don't use to much, make more of a roux. 

1 cup of calcium carbonate to 1 quart of paint. 

Add more for a more chalky look. You can add up to 2 cups if needed. I never really measure but once you do it a few times you know the look you're going for!! This will last much longer in the can then the other formulas. 
I do not recommend plaster of paris or grout formulas. They are highly toxic, stink and I don't want any of you breathing that crap!! 

Paint on, My friends. 

unsanded grout recipe "stinks" 
DIY chalk paint

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Chalk painted armoire!

This is my Armoire that holds all my paint and supplies. Its HUGE, I bought it back in 2001 when it was still cool to use them for your large "tube" TV. I hated the color and have been wanting to paint it for years, ok, for about 5 years! Once I discovered chalk- paint I knew I wanted to use it on this beast. Its solid wood but it does have a smooth veneer. 

I started by cleaning the entire thing with TSP, especially the inside where the TV once was and there was a this gross black film ( it may have been from my past soy candle obsession) ! I used a Chalk paint I can no longer discuss. I waxed in with clear wax then used my good ol' oil based glaze. This is a little tricky because the oil based glaze sticks really well to the wax so rub fast or it will stick and be very hard to get "the look" you want.. It will look more like dirt over paint.  It turned out great, I am still not sure if i want to keep it or use it for display at the shop.  Either way, I love it.. its so cute now!!

Paint on, My Friends!

before glaze

after, its been distressed and glazed 
Bottom: after, glazed and distressed 
before glazing and distressing
after, distressed then glazed
Before, and look at that GIANT tub TV!! so gross! lol
Here she is!! All done and put back together.. Now I just need to put hundreds of cans of paint back in! 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Vinegar kills weeds?

This is so not about furniture, but I like to share my Eco tips that I have been doing for years.
I hate those ugly sharp broad leaf weeds. I also hate using toxic spray to kill them. So after a little research figured out regular cheap vinegar kills them! I'm Sure my neighbors think I'm crazy when I'm outside pouring it on my weeds, But it works... I buy the gallon size at local Sam's club. It is only a few bucks and Eco friendly!!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Fight of The China Hutch!

Funny sorry about this Beautiful China Hutch. I went to my local auction to see what they had that I could paint. I saw this beauty, I was so gonna get this! I started bidding and there was someone to my right bidding also. I couldn't see who it was so I kept on going. Finally, I get a good look and its one of my own vendors at my shop. I love this lady, she is so sweet. So I stop bidding and let her win!  I apologized to her for bidding against her. She reassured me it was no big deal, she didn't see me until it was to late . A few weeks later she found me at the shop and said she wanted to sell me the hutch. WHAT, WAIT, is she serious!! YES, I want to buy it, she sold it to me for the same amount she paid! See being a nice person has its advantages! 

I painted this is a deep black with heavy distressing. Also has new knobs. The whole thing has a clear coat and the top has 2 coats. This is the first hutch I have had that has a hinged swinging door on the bottom, my theory for this, is to be able to fit large casseroles or platters under there!! 

Paint on, My friends! 

$499 at the Feathered Nest Market 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Painting Furniture

I have been painting as long as I can remember. I didn't start out painting furniture, I started painting with fabric paint with my Grandma JJ! Remember the "puff" paint?   I would paint little wooden boxes or material that she was making into a quilt! My Grandmother was very artsy, she always had me drawing or doing something fun. This included garage sales, Lots of them. I would always find something to "fix up". I remember in the 4th grade we had to make a kite, well my dad and I made it and I painted a little duck sitting on water next to a baby duck! My teacher made me call my parents and we had a meeting about it. They said there is no way I was the one who painted that, and I would not be able to get full credit for the project! While they were sitting "discussing" this issue I busted out my notebook and drew the stupid duck again, they got very quiet!

I guess its always been with me. The ability to see things and make them "better"! I used to go to friends houses  ( around the age of 9) and ask why don't you paint the wall this color or Fix that table and re-cover those chairs. Im pretty sure my friends parents thought I was a snooty know-it-all, but I was doing it in the name of all things pretty!!

When my daughter was born I started painting all kinds of cute things! I painted her little toddler sized bench with hand painted flowers and other shapes! That was the same year I had this weird addiction to the "Vine" stencil.  Above every door in my house was a random ivy stencil in green! I thought it was so COOL! Now my daughter and I both love painting large wall to wall damask with  stencils.  SO much nicer then the "ivy" of the late 90's!! Now she is 16 and painting her own furniture!

So to sum it up, I have been truly painting furniture since I was 18, thats a long long time and a lot of experience. I once messed up some ready made shelves from Lowes, but what I didn't know is they were MDF.... the paint would not stick!  DUH!!! I think I ended up throwing them away! So for the past 16 years I have learned from my mistakes and perfected the art of painting wood! I read other blogs/websites  about painting furniture and I agree with most of them, but there are those that make me cringe. Especially when they recommend a crappy product or advise you NOT to clean the wood before slappin' on that first coat of paint!

I currently paint anywhere from 10-20 pieces of furniture a month and have for over 2 years now!! I love what I do, its my thing and I love the freedom to be creative and make a good living doing so. I cant stress enough the two most important steps in painting a piece of furniture....

1. TSP the wood, it gets all the oil and grease off. It preps the wood to accept the paint and allows it to stay on!
2. Use a good paint, I have said it before, BEHR paint with primer is the best, Natura by Benjamin Moore is my Second Fav. Its also zero voc. I also like chalk paint, Annie Sloan and CeCe Caldwell.
I use Benjamin Moore Super spec low lustre for all things black... It goes on a Hunter green and dries a BEAUTIFUL  deep rich black!

one of my first pieces when I started this company, I still have it! 
Paint on, My friends!!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Yellow and Gray bedroom theme!

My Daughter changes her room colors more then anyone I know! a little over a year ago I painted her dresser a beautiful lime Green with a dark glaze ( see pic below). She also Painted her walls Lime with a pink Damask stencil. It was SOOOO cute, but she gets on pinterest and wants to change her whole theme AGAIN. This time she did Gray walls and yellow furniture.. I will be making her curtains out of a funky gray & yellow fabric as soon as I find some!! 
She painted this dresser all by herself I only instructed how to use chalk paint. It took 2 coats and a light sanding on top. She also wants me to "make" a cool headboard covered in the same funky fabric we pick for the curtains... I have never made curtains before but what the heck, It cant hurt trying! 
We did this dresser in chalk paint because it was previously painted and glazed and I did not want to paint 15 coats of regular paint over it.. the chalk paint went right on. WE did use TSP to clean any funk off, from being in a Teenagers room! 

Paint on, My friends!! 


Sunday, March 4, 2012

How to paint a large mirror!

This is one of those tips everyone contacts me about! I paint a lot of mirrors for dressers. when I first started this business I HATED doing it! I hated taping off, so I didn't! then I would spend hours using a blade to scrape off the paint that I got on the mirror!

SO one day I was using some scrapbook paper to place up next to the wood so I wouldn't get paint on the mirror. I was so shocked that it fit right under the  wood on the mirror, so I started using thick card stock type paper every time! my favorite is good old note cards, I even get my kids "used" ones from previous school years and use them. On this mirror I used old business cards that I made 2 years ago that I no longer use!! I know, great idea!! I am all about making life easier! If they move around while your painting, add a few pieces of tape or double up the cards.

Paint on, My friends!