Friday, October 25, 2013

The Tale of an Old Table (and one woman's attempt to get a good picture)

Once upon a time there was an old table. An unassuming, dried out, wobbly, bent old table.

It followed me home.

I was new to furniture painting and designer paint back then. A babe in the woods. So I painted the table with chalk paint and did the top coat with milk paint..... not knowing .... And Holy Cow! Make it stop!

What is now serendipity was to me then an unexpected and scary failure. I had no idea what was going on so I just watched. And watched. And watched. Until it stopped.

Deep breath


start again

The second time I got just the right amount of chipping and started warming up to it. Plus I'd discovered dark wax and slathered it on. Slathered.

Although I was doing this table for myself I took pictures in case I changed my mind and put it on etsy. So began 4 years of trying to take a decent picture. It's leggy and scrawny. It's nothing but spindles with a flat spot on top. The thing is all about negative space! And I didn't have but one cheap camera. Change lenses? HA HAha ha ha. snort

 In the beginning there was a peach table. It sat in front of a peach wall. And it was awful.

Here it is slammed up against the wall on a fake floor.

And in natural light, several months later. Still tall and gangly. And peach.

 I dragged it outside.

I dragged it back inside. (Disclaimer: The walls aren't that peachy, however I WILL repaint)

I buried put it in my booth.

I dragged it back home and did a ....... goth version? Good grief.

Okay. Let's try another angle.

Oh boy that's a lotta peach.

 Sunshine didn't help.

 A dark room might help...... but I finally decided on a redo.

You can't tell from the pictures but there was so much dark wax on the table that it looked dirty. And I never liked the peach table top. No, really! I DIDN'T! When I decided to sell it I gave it an update.

In with the Old White, out with the peach. But not before I went over the whole thing with odorless mineral spirits to remove the wax.

 The pumpkin border is gone from the top, as is the peach! YAY! Let's hear it for beautiful whites!

There was a world of difference with the dark wax gone. Don't misunderstand me, I love dark wax, but when I was a newbie I had no idea when enough was enough.

 The table is brighter and more cheerful looking now.

The green remained the same.

The finishing touch was the stencil painted in a chamois color that I mixed myself.

It's still a gangly table but the backgrounds are getting more interesting.

It's going back to the booth today but I really want to keep it. Unfortunately I'd have to hang it from the ceiling or something; there is simply no room.

Linking to:
miss mustard seed
common ground
funky junk interiors
be different act normal

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Twinkle, twinkle one-eared cat

I moved this school desk and after that couldn't get the little rhyme out of my head. I kept making up new words. :-) I've got a million of them!

Twinkle, twinkle one-eared-cat
Wonder if you hear with that?
Rodents scurry, I'm surprised they dare,
since we know there's something crunchy there

The Inspector is healing fast. He even has peach fuzz growing so he no longer looks like he's turning into a snake. (Anyone see that 'B' horror movie called Hssss?)

The Inspector (real name: Morgan) looks a little grumpy about being disturbed. This is his new place to nap - the laundry basket. I'm not entirely used to it yet, I keep asking him "Where's your ear?"

Peach Fuzz!

Morgan is back to playing with the dog. He's instigating games of Tag and King of the Hill. Yesterday he left some body parts in the hall for me to clean up. Ah, yes, the Inspector is feeling good. But I HATE finding a spleen on the carpet. Hate. It.

{I don't know that it was a spleen, but I'm going with it.}

Looking good, Inspector 19, looking good!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Laying low, processing what the doctor said.

No matter how positive or optimistic a person is, there will be times when unpleasant news has to be processed. That was me last weekend. I had an appointment with a specialist who told me I might be faced with a treatment that entails repeated rounds of no-fun-at-all. I think my eyes bugged out of my skull.

So, I had a quiet weekend getting used to the idea. I just worked on simple things and dragged some furniture from room to room. I had a table in the corner of my bedroom that was doing nothing but holding up some old clocks and a couple rabbits. Really, the base was the only reason I kept this table. It's old, heavy and ... well, old and heavy. I thought decoupage would be a therapeutic way to spend some time.

There were some old newspapers in a trunk I found at an estate sale and I thought they would make an entertaining table top.

And I thought the newspaper suited the base.

I love old stuff.

Then I saw a photo of silver and glass salt and pepper shakers on a silver tray. It looked great but I only had a seen-better-days gold tray.    

 Like this one.

  I painted it with blackening solution and antiqued the mirror. But the tray looked too dull so I got out the Guilders Paste and put some shine on there.

The tops of the little joined salt and pepper were red plastic. The blackening solution took care of that! Even at close inspection they look metal.

 So much better!

What I used.

Cruising around the web I came across some frames that were done in an old world style using gesso instead of paint. Well, I have gesso and I have frames so I thought I'd give it a try.

And therapeutic? Part of the technique is to whack away at the dry gesso with a wire brush. And whack I did. Whack whack whack. The result is an aged, dug-out-of-Pompeii look that you just can't get with paint. 

Whack whack whack.
Ahhhhh. I felt much better. 

Five days in the hospital?
Whack Whack WHACK

23 days recovering?

Repeat until my next transplant?

sigh ......
Laying low time is over. It's time to step back into the fight.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

anyone know anything about this suitcase?

I found this suitcase at an estate sale and I was confident that a quick google search would give me some background on it. Either I'm asking the wrong questions or there isn't another one of these online for Google to find.

So? Anyone?

The airplane is embossed on both sides. I don't have measurements but it is a large size suitcase. 

It's a propeller airplane which makes me think 30s or so.

My plan is to make it into a table somehow, but I don't want to ruin it if it's the only one in existence and used to belong to Clark Gable.

(There's more to the Clark Gable story but that will have to wait for another time.)

So? Ideas?

Monday, October 7, 2013

Time warp

It seems like I haven't posted anything in ages but my last post was only a week ago. Maybe it feels like longer because so much is going on
around here.

I enrolled in an online art class because I have soooo much extra time to kill. What was I thinking? I must be nuts. And the class isn't easy. They expect me to own and operate a jigsaw! Bwah ha ha ha ha. As if.

I've also started tutoring a young man in a page design software and he absolutely made my day when he first got here. He complimented me on how I've decorated the house. He hasn't been here in years, he's been off at art school so he missed the transformation. Later on he blew me away when he told me I was his role model. Me? Wow.

Because it feels like I haven't painted anything in ages I revved up my paint sprayer yesterday. I haven't used it much. Actually, the only time I used it was when it was new and having made the unfortunate decision to paint three tables Baby-Poop-Yellow, I kinda lost my momentum. And while baby poop might have its own charm, people just don't want that color in their living room. What possessed me? I think it was the only latex paint I had in quantity at the time. And it was practically free. (The tables are now being painted red. Black glaze. We shall never speak of the yellow again.)

Oops. Boo boo.
So, I revved up the paint sprayer and went nuts with Antique White on these matching what-evers. For a millisecond I felt bad about covering the floral painting.

Before I go any further I want to say that yes, my spray room is in the barn. That's a tractor in the upper right corner. And I took all these photos with my phone so any quality issues should be directed to Apple.
The first coat. Already i love them.

I  grabbed a nightstand and old ironing board......

And since I was on a roll, I revisited a table I'd abandoned a year ago.

Today when it warms up I'll do a second coat on everything then ponder the possibilities as far as a topcoat. And I might layer on some American Paint Rushmore. Then I'll glaze everything. I've been using wax exclusively for a while now so a little change is due.

And I'll be looking around to see what else would look good in white.

In other news:
Inspector 19 got the staples taken out of his head. But he still needs to have eye lubrication put in his right eye several times a day. Fortunately for us the Inspector doesn't mind because he is not a cat to be messed with. The vet practically comes into the room with a lion-tamer whip. Ever since she scruffed him and shot a pill down his throat he's been looking for some pay-back.