Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Here comes your 19th nervous breakdown.

• • • • • • 

 Anyone who has followed my blog knows how I bounce back from just about everything.
One exception being the death of a parent. That drags on.

At this point let me just say that there were times during the last 7ish years when I wanted to run screaming into the woods. Right?

#11 - scary Portland bridges. Scarier when doing chemo.

Having cancer, from my point-of-view, is like being on an old-fashioned roller coaster. The wooden kind that just went up, up, up and then plummeted down, G-forces being the only thrill element. You have faith it will go back up.

But it WILL clank to a stop. And that's when you get out the ignored Advance Directive paperwork. Let friends and family know. And then, as was my case, you are told a new treatment has appeared on the horizon. Then you call back friends and family. Stuff the Advanced Directive back in the folder.

And on I go again.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Mr. Bad's nightstand

Mr. Bad gave up another piece of furniture for the cause.

I had actually planned on painting this nightstand a couple years ago and had done all the repairs and prep work. Then I sold the 80's nightstands and we both needed replacements. This was his and mine is a child's dresser. So cute. But I digress.

I almost forgot to take a before picture. 

Before I go on, I have to get a little frustration off my chest. For a while now I've been seeking out new link parties to keep up with what other people are doing. What other people are doing, apparently, is cooking. Link party after link party has been casseroles and cookies. Or free printables. Or knit hats. Right?

So here I am, all dressed up with my furniture, and nowhere (new) to go. This morning I googled "Thursday link parties", not knowing how that would work, and on the first page I saw a Link Party Directory. Score! I clicked through on about five, maybe six, parties and they weren't there. There was no party. There was no mention of a party. There wasn't so much as a cookie recipe.

I took my furniture and came home. sheesh! I'll go back to the search results later and look at some of the other links. But for now I just wanted to share my pain. :-)

OH! And here's another thing!!! (Yeah, yeah, I sound like a raving lunatic) Do I ever feel like I don't get out much! I did find a link party last week ....... I think ...... but instead of the lovely thumbnails of projects there were simple instructions to click the "hashtags." Sorry, what? I can't tell you how many times I scrolled up and down and refreshed. #&*#@ hashtags anyway. Then I went on to other things and forgot all about it. UNTIL Mr. Bad had ESPN on and the sports analyst said to go somewhere and do something (sorry, I wasn't paying attention) with the HASHTAG. Get out! Hashtag? Really?

So. I'll do some research (read: ask Mr. Bad. He's on Facebook All -The-Time so chances are he's run across this. whatever)

And now, back to Mr. Bad's nightstand.

 I left the top completely alone. There are some scratches and nicks but it's old. There are supposed to be scratches and nicks.

 I kept it simple. I used C.C. Caldwell Alaskan Tundra and only did one coat. Next was a white wash, randomly applied. I then applied the gel top coat I have come to love and all the places where the paint was thin showed up.

No sanding needed!

 I kept the original pulls but added Rub n Buff to them.

 Then I lightly added Rub n Buff to any raised parts of the nightstand.

Simple but pretty. And now the hunt for more nightstands continues. They are so much fun to paint!

Linking to:

Sunday, December 14, 2014

The gray dresser part deux

Every now and then I paint something I want to keep. This dresser is one of those things, but onto Craigslist it went. sigh

I already posted the 'before and after' so this post is about the details.

I sanded the edges of the applique slightly and used glaze for most of the aging. I wanted a less-is-more approach to the distressing this time.

I used 4 different colors of paint for this 'simple' technique.

I left the brush strokes and scratches alone since they add to the aged look.

Again, very light distressing and almost no glaze, which is so much more realistic looking on this dresser.

Here's what I used. (My containers look well used, don't they?) I started with Sack Cloth and sorta slapped it on. Then I slapped on Plymouth Rock and kinda rubbed it into the Sack Cloth. Then, I dry brushed Navaho White over the entire dresser and when that was dry I washed a couple layers of Plymouth Rock over the dresser, using a rag to soften the white dry brushing.

After letting the dresser dry for a day or so, I put on a gel topcoat. This General Finishes gel topcoat goes on beautifully but has a strong odor and needs ventilation. Because of that, I'll keep shopping for a gel topcoat that's a little more user friendly.


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Friday, December 12, 2014

A little craftsman dresser saved from the winter storms

Well, maybe not so much 'saved' as dragged out of an old shed during a particularly nasty rain storm. There were also a bunch of chairs, of which I got two. And the best part, the real rescue I guess, was digging a vintage leather suitcase out of what appeared to be a burn pile. Oh yeah, in the pouring rain. Mr. Bad was less than thrilled with getting soaked over a suitcase we could see only part of. But it turned out to be fine but soggy and it came home with us. Me.

All that happened about a month ago when we took a left at a big Yard Sale sign and came upon the ickiest of estate sales. Icky. Dirty. Gloves-and-a-stick kind of sale. Anyway, out back was a shed with furniture and I walked back and forth to the house, in the rain, to negotiate prices with the ick ..... with the morose person slumped in a chair.

I've never seen such a dismal sale. I've been to sales where everything was dirty, piled up, strewn all over, what have you, and we shoppers would be laughing and carrying on like kids over the whole thing. This sale had people coming in then running for their lives.

But I got a dresser. Go me!

The unusual pulls are what caught my eye.

I knew I wanted to do a heavy distress on this piece but distressing down to honey oak wasn't nearly what I had envisioned. So, to get that nice, dark distressed look, I painted stain where I would later distress. I used stain so the dark color wouldn't come off when I sanded.

The light aqua color is Annie Sloan Duck Egg Blue mixed with American Paint Company Navaho White. The distressing was done with a wet green scour pad and I used a satin poly for the top coat.

I did a couple washes of the white to get the uneven look.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

To wax or not to wax? I didn't even know it was a question!

They said: "Apply a thin coat of wax over the chalk paint and wipe off excess. Repeat. Apply dark wax." And I did. Over and over, I did. Without questioning, I rubbed on that wax and buffed it to a glorious sheen and spent an hour or more catching my breath and rubbing my arms. whew.

Then came this nightstand and not a stitch of wax was applied. Why not?

Because of my red low-boy dresser with it's dull wax and repeated repaintings, that's why.

The nightmare is chronicled here. I finally took all the wax off with mineral spirits and used poly. After repainting again, of course.


I had been using wipe-on poly and other top coats every so often but I was always afraid the chalk paint might turn dull or rub off. Or that the Chalk-Paint-Police would come git me!

Another no-wax project.

And another.

And another. On and on.

Then I purchased Altard's latest e-book on technique and imagine my surprise to find that this power-house of furniture painting has completely stopped using wax due to the same reasons I was using it less.

Well then. To wax or not to wax? If you have humidity or hot weather I'd be thinking twice. The waxed furniture I took to an outdoor show last summer, including my chippy table below, came home dull. I had to redo those pieces and I wasn't happy. No, not at all.

But that's just me.

Linking to
tip junkie
home stories a to z

Friday, December 5, 2014

Before and after - my gray dresser

This is just a teaser. I'm trying out my computer, freshly back from Apple. I was, for all intents and purposes, without a computer for a month or more. I was using my old Mini Mac but it didn't have my photos. Or files. Or anything.

My just-repaired-laptop was restarting itself over and over when I was trying to use it. It had an uncanny way of restarting at the worst possible moment. I can't tell you how many times blog posts just disappeared before my eyes. poof    Edited photos. poof

Anyway, so far so good. No restarts. And so,
here's my before-and-after.

The flaws don't show in this photo. The veneer was hanging on by its finger nails. The drawers didn't even dream of pulling out smoothly. One drawer had to be held up to pull another out. It took two hands and a knee. Missing chunks of wood had to be sculpted back on. Yay Plastic Wood.


Layered paint, wet distressing and a gel top coat make for a second lease on life.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

I really need your help on this

Some of you might remember my sewing table. It is/was one of my favorite things and I never meant to sell it. But, I had a sewing machine sized hole in my booth so we moved it in. Then I decided to be booth-free because of increasingly complicated treatment schedules.

So we moved everything out of the booth, some of it in Mr. Bad's truck. Well, he got home and discovered the sewing table only had 3 out of 4 drawers. One drawer flew out on the highway, no doubt a scattered mass of green slivers. We drove back and forth anyway, looking for it without much hope.

Since then I've kept an eye on ebay but haven't seen the exact drawer.

Then yesterday it suddenly occurred to me to send out a cry for help. So here I am, crying. For help.

It is the top left drawer that is missing. If anyone has one, or sees one, I will happily purchase it!! And send as a finder's fee an original art photo - of the finder's choice.

Here's an over-enlarged unpainted image incase it helps.

Isn't this sad? Does it bring tears to your eyes? It does mine.

If I can't find the exact drawer I'll have to find a set of 4 that are a close enough match that I can live with them. Either way I'll have to match the paint, and doing 4 drawers might be easier ......
but I'm not ready to give up yet.

So any help will be appreciated!!! Good luck and good hunting!

Linking to:
shabby nest

Happy Holidays to one and to all


We don't have snow yet this year but to me the holidays cry out for the white stuff. Then it can melt so everyone can get to work. And to the grocery store.

In a perfect world, right?

Dog decorating tutorial in the post below.
Just be sure no doggies are harmed in any way.

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