A long long time ago in a galaxy far away a girl continued to dream about all of the cool crafty projects she would like to do one day....
Well check one more off the list! Woohoo!
I have always been intrigued by chalk paint and milk paint. Just how I am. In the pandemic YouTube watching bonanza I have started (that smart TV can be dangerous) I was able to get a bit more information on just how these work. Chalk paint seemed like the ticket for redoing some of my old brown furniture. When they said "no sanding of old varnish" I was like "SIGN ME UP!"
I got online and found The Purple Painted Lady out in New York and glory be they had, yup, you got it - a sample kit! You know from my kitchen adventures so far how much I love that idea. So I ordered one and waited and watched her tons of FB live videos on using it (and some other things). I also got on FB and joined a couple groups of crafty designers (honestly they put me to shame) - one is the Annie Sloan group and the other the Prisma transfers group. I was blown away! Now I had/have lofty goals of eventually chalk painting the hutch that my Mom gave me years ago.
Forgive me if I already covered this story....This hutch has been in my life since day one. It is one of those pieces that you ALWAYS see in your home and that every time you moved (we didn't move a ton but we did relocate), it didn't feel like home till it was in its place. My Mom always had a china tea set and some other china cups and saucers on the shelves and my Dad always had his pipe and tobacco in one of the drawers. So great memories and I asked to have it when my Mom sold the house years ago. I was a bit worried about broaching the subject of PAINTING it with her to be honest. I knew it was old but didn't remember the history. She told me that she bought this way back in the early 60s from a family friend for $19! Oh and that the family friend had bought it used from someone else. So we pretty much figure it is 60+ years old.
Now I've had this for over 20 of those years and I always wanted it in the spot above BUT I have a light/fan switch there and I was not going to rewire stuff to put it there. In comes one of those books I bought for redoing my kitchen (off AbeBooks.com - cheap!). I saw a sideboard they had taken and lifted the top shelves onto turned legs and put it in a corner. Why hadn't I thought of that before???? Just take the top off - duh. Now I could put this where I wanted and hey, use it while waiting for my cabinets, and get it out of the spare bedroom!
I digress....but you get the idea. Back to the Chalk Paint.....
I wasn't going to tackle this piece right off with no experience with the paint or techniques. I'm an analyst by trade and I overthink freaking everything! That can quickly turn into stress. So the sample kit fit the bill. Little teeny cans of 3 colors (I picked and that was another thing that I struggle with - too many choices), clear wax, fabulous instructions, a brush, stir sticks, etc. Perfecto! I continued to see the amazing stuff the people on the FB groups created. Wowsa! I also found there is a whole line of rub on transfers people use on their refurbished furniture these days. So I ordered a couple of those too. My flowers arrived last week.
In addition to the hutch I also have a set of my maternal Grandmother's silver that my Mom gave me. It was the "good silver" (those of you in my age range understand that). If I remember the receipt I found, gotten back in 1928. It sat in the silver chest in the bottom drawer of that very hutch until a few years ago when I was like - USE IT! It is silly to have that stuff hidden in a drawer where I cannot enjoy it. Out it came and in with my other sets of stainless flatware. With the remodel of the kitchen I am pairing things down substantially - the flatware was one of them, knowing I wasn't going to have a ton of space for it. I decided the "good silver" would stay and the rest got donated. As I was messing with the hutch's new location I thought - why no use the silverware chest to store it - on the "new sideboard"?
Here is the original chest:
You can tell it is a bit battered (as is the top of the hutch). A perfect SMALL piece to try this chalk paint! I had ordered 3 colors - Old White (a white staple color is always good as it can be used to lighten anything), Emile (a really pretty lavender) and Amsterdam Green (a forest green). Oh what to do - oh just freaking start! This was almost but not quite as stressful as my first go with the epoxy last week. Quit thinking it over and go. I did! I lightly sanded it and wiped it down to remove some of the years of grime. It does have a crack in the bottom (living in dry climates does that) but you cannot see it so no biggy. Off I went.
First a layer of the Emile (lavender) even though it is hard to tell in my great garage lighting. The videos and Annie Sloan herself basically says "slap it on" and so I did. Man that stuff is thick and dries REALLY fast!
Like my fancy brush dryer? Within less than 1/2 hour it was dry, ready for the second coat. I thought about a second coat of the Emile but also knew I wanted to try distressing this piece thru the white. So I thinned out the white a bit and slapped that on a bit more carefully. Lesson 1 - shouldn't have thinned the white as I got some bleed through. Lesson 2 - work with it or if you hate it, sand it all down and start over! Sorry didn't do a pic before I started sanding through. I sanded and sanded and sanded. Wasn't quite prepared for that and was really concerned that I seemed to not be seeing any of the lovely lavender color. Because I needed to do more light sanding now around the deep distressing.
I spend a good amount of time with 2 different grits of sandpaper working to get what I wanted to see. Now I can check that technique off the list. Not sure I'd want to do a large piece that way unless I was seriously in a mellow, take my time kind of mood. We shall see. Sanding done it was in the house to decide on what transfers to do on it. I loved doing rub ons when I was young so this was a hint back to that childhood memory! Again though, TOO MANY CHOICES. The two sets I ordered were totally different, one very bright and one pastel. Pastel it was and also because the flowers were a bit smaller. I put on the first two then really couldn't decide if I wanted more or to keep it simple. A quick post to my very craft FB friends and lots of suggestions later I decided to add a FEW more and balance it out with the butterfly on the top. The voting was for a bee but the bee wasn't a cool nice yellow bee but rather a brown kinda dorky looking one so went with butterfly instead. Then I took my sand paper and distressed them just a tad. You can also see I ran them over the front and side edge a bit as well, I think that look is so cool and wanted to try it. Was able to get the first coat of wax on without messing up any of the transfers and the second will go on 24 hours later. Since it will be used every day may even do a third we shall see. Below is the final product.
All in all I'm super pleased and have yet one maybe two more smaller (but bigger than this) pieces I want to tackle before the big hutch. Besides I really don't want to decide on colors for that till my cabinets and counters are in if possible....but at the slow rate that seems to be happening I may just go for it. Meanwhile I was thinking (surprise surprise) about the top of the hutch. I really don't want it on the wall above the bottom as it is in kind of a weird spot and really breaks up the flow of the open-ness I'll have now in the kitchen. Today I kinda paused and think I "may" try it in the space above the stove (where the painting is right now). No final on that till cabinets are in and I can test my theory though. Guess I'll get the paint for the nightstand instead - looks like a trip to Bozeman to the stockist there might be in my future.....we'll see. I may just order from The Purple Painted Lady!