A while back I refinished the gorgeous little French Provincial table seen here, but thought that it lacked something… I didn’t know exactly what until I came across a vintage map of London at a thrift store & light bulbs lit up above my head! What better map for a piece with French styling?! So, I decoupaged the map, glued some simple chain around the edge to give it a finished look, and voila! Easy peasy!
I was havin’ the buyer’s remorse over this little French Provincial dresser. I only bought it cuz hubby needed a dresser (I mighta sold his old one to buy this one, lol) and the style goes with a hutch and small table that currently reside in our master bedroom. I love the curves of French Provincial, the stunning drawer fronts, and incredible hardware are beyond lovely! That said, this piece had no character to me. The wood lacked luster and the whole piece kinda faded into itself. I had imagined that a little paint and distressing would give it a voice again, but I was beginning to doubt that I could bring it back to life. I had to give this refinish a shot though, considering I already shelled out the dough for it! Planing the drawers was on the top of my to-do list since three of the four were jammed shut even after being in the AC for three days! Not cool.
Paintbrush in hand I went to work, whipping up a batch of homemade chalk paint using non-sanded grout, water, and latex paint until the mixture was similar to pancake batter. I slapped on 1 coat on the drawer fronts and two coats everywhere else. Slowly, but surely, I could see my vision for this piece come into view! Once dry, I distressed and waxed, careful to distress only the drawer fronts, as I really wanted them to stand out. After buffing out the wax, I stood back & smiled! My perseverance payed off! This piece had character again… and also a name, Ginger, because it DOES have a soul!! ;D
Meet Stella. A French Provincial antique table in need of a fresh start. When I spotted her I noticed her gorgeous bones, which happens to be my only prerequisite for refinishing a piece. I happily lugged her home and got to work. Her top was water damaged and dull, so the first thing I did was strip and sand it down to bare veneer. She was looking better already!
Next up was to apply some fresh lacquer in order to protect it from future damages. Three coats of lacquer and a single cot of wax make for an incredible feel and richness to the wood. After finishing her top it was time to give her base a new paint job. A warm antique white matched her stunning wood grain perfectly. For this piece I whipped up some homemade chalk paint and applied two thick coats, achieving an authentic aged look. When using chalk paint, a layer of furniture wax must be applied in order to seal the dried paint. For this piece I distressed while applying the wax, using 0000 steel wool and an old t-shirt to work the wax into the paint. Twenty minutes after applying the wax I buffed it out, creating an incredibly soft sheen that is comparable to no other furniture finish.
The bottom shelf remains half-finished for now… I have something brilliant in store for this French Provincial beauty! Stay tuned! ;D
Linkin’ back to…
Update : Check out this post about how I added character to this piece by decoupaging a vintage map of London to it’s shelf!!