Black Beauty {Vintage Vanity Makeover}

Today I wanted to share with you a vintage vanity makeover I recently completed that I’m naming “Black Beauty.”

20170310_134322wmFor this furniture makeover I used Country Chic Paint. They are a Canadian company and they offer both chalk and clay based paint. Their paints are eco-friendly, odourless, require minimal prep and are easy to distress for that country chic look.

For this project I chose the All-In-One Decor Paint in Liquorice, a rich black. I started work on the chair. These chairs are so easy to recover. There are usually just four screws underneath the seat, holding it in place. I removed the seat, gave the chair a rough sanding, cleaned it thoroughly and got to painting!

chaircollage

I think if there was an award for prettiest paint can ever, Country Chic would have to win! How cute are those flowers?

I tried Country Chic’s painting sponge for this project. This sponge makes fast work of all those tiny curves on an intricate piece like this chair. After allowing the paint to cure for a few days, I followed with a coat of polycrylic.

Next, I recovered the chair seat. No sewing skills required! If you can use a staple gun and wrap corners like a present, you can recover a chair. Even if your staple gun is ancient and busted, so that you have to load each and every single staple individually. True story.

Here she is with the chair seat back in place.

IMG_9463editwatermark

Check out those curves!

The vanity top was in pretty rough shape when I found this piece, so I gave it a good sanding with my electric sander. Next, I applied Minwax brand wood conditioner. I find this really helps the wood take the stain more evenly. The bottom left picture below is after wood conditioner. It was showing quite a bit of red undertones and I wanted to downplay those. So I then applied two coats of Minwax Jacobean. It looks like a brand new top!

woodtopcollage

After a few minor repairs to veneer and the drawers on the vanity itself, I sanded the drawers and body of the piece, cleaned it and primed. Priming is not a necessary step in most cases, when using Country Chic Paint, or any chalk or clay paint for that matter. If you are worried about bleed through, which can happen with a mahogany piece, especially if you are painting with white, then priming is a good idea. It’s also helpful if your piece is very slick and you want to be sure of adhesion.

The paint went on very easily and the coverage was excellent. For this particular piece, I decided to go for a more clean look, so I kept the distressing to a minimum. After allowing the paint to cure for a few days, I applied two coats of Minwax brand polycrylic in semi-gloss. This is an extra step, All-In-One Decor paint does not require a top coat. I like the piece of mind a top coat gives you. I also personally like how polycrylic slightly deepens the colour and sheen on your piece.

IMG_9374watermark

If you’ve ever applied poly to black chalk or clay paint, then you know that it can be especially difficult to avoid seeing streaks, or blotches in your finish. You can help avoid this by allowing your paint to fully cure, working in long even strokes and not over-working the paint. If you are still seeing some blotches, you can also add a tiny bit of your original paint colour to your poly, which will help even out any streaking that may occur.

20170310_132935watermark

I lined the drawers with some beautiful black and white floral paper. If you’re new to my blog, then I will let you know that I have a deep love for anything black and white! If it’s black and white AND floral – stop, my beating heart! The only thing that might be better, is black and white stripes.

IMG_9331watermark

See the dove-tailed drawers? You have to pay a small fortune to buy furniture made that way today.

20170310_133808watermark

I gave the piece some new Cynthia Rawley knobs. I love the touch of glamour they add.

IMG_9350watermark

Another thing I love about vintage vanities is that if you remove the mirror, they also make fantastic desks.

IMG_9340watermark

Here are a few before and after shots.

ChairBeforeAfter

beforeandaftervaity

I just love how the rich and moody black, along with the crisp and clean stripes, play against the warmer wood top and the touches of brass on the knobs.

20170310_133350watermark

Another makeover in the books! What do you think? Do you love black and white as much as I do? Leave me a comment below!

This piece is for sale locally, here in the Regina, Saskatchewan area. If you are interested please email me at prairiegirlhome@gmail.com, or message me via Instagram or Facebook.

Signature

 

 

 

Disclosure: This post was created in collaboration with Country Chic Paint. I received product to use in this project, however all opinions expressed are entirely my own.

Prairie Girl Home | Painted Furniture {the first year}

With the beginning of 2017, I’m looking back at 2016 and my first year in the painting furniture business.

2016 Collage

I haven’t posted very much on the blog yet about my painted pieces, usually I post them to Instagram and Facebook, so I thought I could take one post to share the highlights of my first year in the furniture flipping business. (I kind of hate that word, flipping, because it feels like a flipper is someone who merely slaps paint on a piece to sell it and make a buck, which is so far from the case. But it still feels like the best term to describe what I do in a nutshell. “Furniture Artist” feels more accurate. So let’s say, this was my first year in the “furniture artistry” business. Sure. Let’s go with that.)

The first piece I painted and sold for Prairie Girl Home.
The first piece I painted and sold for Prairie Girl Home, in January 2016. It’s still one of my favourites!

I started painting old wood furniture as a teen and my love just grew from there. I remember dragging my mom to thrift shops to pick up old antiques I wanted to redo for my bedroom. Once I had my license, I would go to garage sales on my own and find old treasures that I dragged home. Some I painted, some things I saved for my first apartment.

IMG_8672[1]
Grey and Gold Vintage Waterfall Dresser, December 2016.
From there I continued to take old forgotten pieces from my parent’s basement, pieces friends were throwing away, pieces I hunted for around town and I lovingly painted these finds and made them my own. When my husband and I were poor, 21 and 24 year old newlyweds, our place was filled with thrift store, garage sale and hand-me-down pieces.  Our mattress and our two living room end tables, that I still remember picking out at Superstore, agonizing over spending that money and making the right decision, were the only “new” items in our home. I never let a budget stop me from creating a home. I painted, I reupholstered, I made something out of what was usually nothing. I remember searching around the different thrift stores in town for the perfect mismatched chairs for our dining room table, which I brought home to paint various shades of blue and lavender. (Yes, lavender. Oh boy, did I have an obsession with lavender. My poor husband!). I was trying to copy Monica from Friend’s dining room table and chairs. This was before Pinterest and Blogs. I drew inspiration from TV (we didn’t have cable and HGTV, so I would copy ideas from my favourite TV shows), movies, magazines (that I usually borrowed from the library) and from the real-life homes of my amazingly talented friends and family.

Charcoal Painted Antique Washstand, February 2016.
Charcoal Painted Antique Washstand, February 2016.

In all of the homes we have had over the years, painted furniture has always played a big role. Up until last year, I painted pieces just for our home. It never occurred to me that I could sell my work, until we had the house we live in currently. For the first time, I had enough storage space that I could start hauling home pieces that I found at “too good a deal to pass up”. I soon realized that our home wasn’t large enough to hold all of these painted pieces. I was going to have to start selling if I wanted to keep painting. So I did.

birchtables3
Birch Tree Papered Side Tables, October 2016.

I love the thrill of the hunt. I love walking into a thrift shop, never knowing what you might find. I love browsing the used sites, looking for that diamond in the rough.

White French Provincial 4 Drawer Dresser
French Provincial Style Dresser, February 2016.

Majority of the time, right from the start, I can see exactly what I want the finished piece to look like. If I don’t have a clear vision, I know enough now to wait until I do before I pull out a paintbrush. I love the entire process – finding the piece, taking it home, lovingly filling, sanding, gluing, fixing, priming, painting, distressing, waxing, sealing, lining drawers, finding the perfect knobs and pulls, and then putting it all back together and styling it for it’s “glamour shot”. I appreciate what it is – beautiful, but forgotten – and imagine it how it could be – beautiful and admired.

Mint Side Table
Soft Mint Side Table, February 2016.

These pieces have a story. That’s the beauty of solid wood antiques and vintage pieces. They have lived a life. Or two. Or three! They have often been there throughout someone’s life – from birth to graduation, then repeated that cycle for yet another child, then another. They have served newlyweds to elderly. They have been sold, passed down, donated or sometimes even thrown away. They have been moved and hauled, painted, then repainted, then stripped, then painted again. Yet, these pieces are still here. Still standing. Sure, they have a few war wounds. They aren’t brand new or “perfect” anymore. But really, just like people, having a few bumps and bruises doesn’t make you damaged. It makes you better.

White Painted and Distressed Telephone Table, November 2016.

These pieces have a story. I love that I am just another part of that story. I found these pieces, dragged them home, saw a vision for them, loved them, restored them and then they are ready to became part of someone else’s story. The piece is ready to live another life. Serve another baby or another newlywed couple or someone who saw the piece and just had to take it home. Who knows how many stories, how many lives these pieces will play a part in.

mint vanity & chair
Mint Make-up Vanity and Vintage Chair, June 2016.

They just don’t make pieces like this anymore. Well, when they do, you pay a small fortune for them. This isn’t the laminate stuff you buy at IKEA one year, only to find that soon the factory paint finish has chipped, the particle board and MDF frame is warped and it’s ready for the garbage heap the next year. (I love IKEA as much as the next person, but I also have fallen victim to the short-term life span of many of their furniture pieces.) When you buy vintage and antique pieces, you know they have lasted this long and that they will continue to stand the test of time.

straightbeadboardwatermarkgrey
French Provincial Coffee Table, November 2016.

For me, starting this small business was about more than just painting furniture. Through what was a very difficult year personally, it gave me something else to focus on. Something completely unrelated to the health crisis my family and I are facing right now. When I felt well enough, it gave me something to escape to. Even if it’s just for an hour or so at a time, it’s amazing the power doing something creative with your hands can have on a person’s well being and mindset.

Mint Painted and Distressed Plant Stand, March 2016.

I like to call painting furniture, decorating our home and creating in general my “happy distraction”.

watermark
White Blanket Ladder, December 2016

I have learned so much this first year in business. I won’t go into all the ins and outs of furniture flipping, since that would make this post massive! I will say that I have learned one thing for sure – that I still have so much to learn! I love that there are endless options when it comes to remaking an old piece. There are so many products, so many techniques and so many styles, that you could spend decades doing this job and still learn new things. I love browsing Pinterest, Instagram, blogs and magazines for inspiration. I lay awake at night and dream up new plans and ideas. I am so excited to keep on creating!

Rustic and Glam Wood Planked White Chest of Drawers, December 2016.
Rustic and Glam Wood Planked White Chest of Drawers, December 2016.

It was a good year.

I just finished my first piece of 2017 and it might be my favourite one yet! I have quite a few new pieces that should be listed in the next couple of months. I will try to post some on here, but you can always follow along on Instagram and my Facebook page, I’m Prairie Girl Home on both, where I post all of my painted pieces for sale!

Thanks for following along and I hope you are all having a wonderful start to 2017!

Signature

Save

Save

Save