Life on the creative side

Posts tagged “diy decorative painting and finishing techniques

Organic/Industrial chandelier

baby henry

While strolling through Brooklyn on a recent visit to see my daughter and my brand new grandbaby, we spotted a fallen limb from a large sycamore tree. It was lodged into the fencing surrounding the base of the tree and part of the sidewalk that had been heaved up by the expanding roots of the tree.  Although my daughter laughed as I pointed to the limb and said “We need that!” she not only worked it loose from the fencing but then carried it on her shoulder for more than ten blocks, back to her apartment.  I just want to note – strolling around with a large branch on your shoulder makes the normally aloof New Yorker  smile and engage in conversation.

found treasure, fallen limb

The branch had such a lovely organic shape and wonderful patina that we both immediately saw its potential for an amazing chandelier over their table, for which they have been in search.

Since hubby was due to arrive the following day we had him throw in some lighting supplies, including five Edison style light bulbs. Then a few days later…

dinning under the light

we were dinning under this beautiful  organic/industrial chandelier.

Finally we added a dimmer switch the chandelier could be adjusted lower for ambiance or raised higher for illumination.  Unfortunately we didn’t get good photos of the process but feel free to post any questions on the process  I would be happy to respond.

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Refurbished table with a sweet coastal charm

gold-leaf starfish for refurbished table with a sweet coastal charm

Rescued from the trash, now this refurbished table has a sweet coastal charm.Refurbished table with a sweet coastal charm

This  little black table had sat on my mother’s porch for years and was in pretty sad shape.  The legs were wobbly, trim was falling off,  the table surface was rotted and one of the legs was sticking up through the top. But the form was so lovely and the paint had a great chippy appeal. So when she asked my dad to toss it out, I was there to catch and rescue it.

littly wobbly chippy black table to be refurbished

I wanted to keep the original top but it was just to far gone. Once I accepted that the top was too far gone, and hubby promised to help me create a new one,  I turned  my disappointment into a search for a creative solution.

making a new top for little shabby black table

I knew I wanted to keep the chippy character of the legs and shelf  so the new top would have to play well its shabby base. Ultimately I decided to add a little contrast, creamy white paint crackled over a blue base-coat.

cream white crackled over blue for refurbished table with a sweet coastal charm

 To marry the new top to the old base I added some of the same blue and white to the base but leaving evidence of the original black.

dry brushed blue and white over chippy black paint on refurbished table

Then for an extra twist I stitched a border of blue yarn around the top. Finally I applied a large, free-hand starfish in gold-leaf and the sad little table was transformed into a new charming table with a coastal vibe.

gold-leaf starfish for refurbished table with a sweet coastal charm

starfish table

With a little creativity and work, the sad little rescue table was transformed into a lovely, refurbished table with a sweet coastal charm.

For more creativity check out:

twig study

be different act normal


Lovely Quilt Cube Side Table

Lovely Quilt Cube Side Table:

Basic box store foam cube up-scaled into this lovely, rolling,  quilt-cube side table.

quilt cube

Another empty-nest leftover transformed from this-

quilt cube foam blockquilt cube rolling base

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

to this-

quilt cube in room

Scraps of vintage textiles camouflage tears and blemishes in the cutter quilt slip-cover

quilt cube detail

while pieces of salvaged wooden planks with lovely distressed paint make the base.

quilt cube on wheels

Simple wheels finished the project.

 

 for more inspiration visit…

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vintage inspiration bif


Refurbishing with Paint, Stitching and Silver-Leaf; A Lovely Little Table to Treasure,

I grabbed this little wobbly table right out of my dad’s hands as he reared back to toss it into the dumpster, now you know something is in sad shape if  it’s not worth the space it takes up in a barn full of junk! Anyway that was a few years back and since then it has lived by mytt's barn bed, on the porch and finally in an out building.  But with Lisa and me looking for items for the booth we plan to set up in January, I pulled it out and took a fresh look at its possibilities.

The black paint concealed the colors but not the ragged texture of the multiple layers of paint globbed on beneath. The legs were loose, very loose; one had actually broken through the table top which had also shortened one side considerably. It was in sad shape, but there was just something sweet about its form. So after my hubby stabilized the top and legs, the best that could be done, I started to work painting. I decided to use a dry brush technique that embraced its primitive nature; and I chose a beautiful blue that puts me in mind of the sea.

Lisa had been looking for a project to try a technique she had seen somewhere that involves stitching on wood.  With that in mind we developed a plan to transform the little ugly table into a beautiful home accessory.

Using a new piece of plywood cut to fit the top of the table, we painted on layers of paint that we then distressed and crackled.  We stitched on a border using a beautiful multi colored yarn and applied a single starfish using gold leaf.

This is what we ended up with…

a lovely little table to treasure.

How to stitch on wood:

We drilled holes about 1 1/2 inches from the edge of the wood using a 3/16 inch bit.  The needle was a six-inch piece of thin, flexible wire folded in half and, using pliers, pinched at the fold to make it small enough to fit through the drilled holes. Sliding an end of the yarn onto the makeshift needle and starting on the underneath side, I pulled the yarn up through a hole and down through the next hole, creating a running stitch; tying off the ends on the underneath side.  To compensate for the bulk of the yarn on the bottom of the stitched piece, we glued very thin strips of plywood along the underneath edge and a couple of strips along the center. Finally, we applied glue along the strips we had added and attached the completed piece to the table top; clamping in place until set.

 

 

 


Refurbishing Trash Unto Treasure

In preparation for its reincarnation, my treasure has been cleaned, re-cleaned and cleaned again, but still a heavy odor of cigarette smoke clings tenaciously to its walls; such are the challenges of re-purposing junk.  It has been scrubbed with soapy water, odor neutralizer and baking soda.  I have sanded, primed and painted my smelly little treasure. Now it spends it days in the sun with its cabinet door wide open. Mother always says that fresh air and sunshine is the best remedy for musty smells; fingers crossed it also works on cigarette smoke.

Even as I struggle with the lingering effects of my treasure’s previous life, I begin the refurbishing.  From the first moment that my heart attached to the discarded piece, I knew that it would be reborn in a lovely shade of blue.  My inspiration was a pair of amazing, vintage, French shutters I recently saw at a flea market.  What I didn’t know, until I began the process, was that it would be applied with a dry brush over the palest shade of aqua, sanded to a worn patina and rubbed with stain to a mellow finish. Simply lovely; but now, how to finish the top… mosaic?


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