life is always about the journey...

Friday, February 17, 2017

Chalk it up to....

Happy TGIFriday everyone!
I hope you all had a lovely Valentine's Day this week. I ended up going to dinner with a few ladies from our neighborhood that also had husbands out of town. It was a fun evening.

Charleston just had a grand opening of Dry Bar last week and I have an appointment to try it out this afternoon. If you aren't familiar, it's a place to get your hair washed and blown out and/or curled (no haircuts or color). Even though we had humidity in Virginia, it's 100% more down here on the coast. And my fine hair does not like it so much and I think I've tried every product on the market..I've basically decided it's just user error at this point LOL! So I booked an appointment to have someone actually teach me how to blow dry my hair & use the correct products for the climate, so I can somewhat win the battle against my frizz-head. I will let you know how it works out ;)

Then Friday night, my neighborhood is having a "Stew & Brew" down at the cabana/pool we have on the water. On the menu is Frogmore Stew aka Lowcountry Boil that has corn on the cob, red potatoes, fresh shrimp, onion & sausage boiled up in some beer with seasonings. It's good! And there will be karaoke ha! I'm going and bringing my favorite wine and will enjoy it, I will be watching karaoke and not joining in though ;)  We have a very small neighborhood and everyone knows everyone here, we all stop and chat to each other, have wine on each other's porches and try to have a get-together at least once a month. December's was a Christmas Crawl around to 4 homes that lasted 7 HOURS, OMGosh, but it was so much fun. It's definitely made getting to know each other a lot easier and more fun.

And Sunday it'll be in the high 70s and sunny, so I'm headed to the beach for the day. I'm taking a good book and am going to enjoy the peace and just RELAX!!


I love to repurpose and remake items I already own. I figure I'm giving a new life to something I chose for our home and helping the environment a bit at the same time. And hey, I'm a sucker for a beautiful makeover that turns out well.

This dresser was one that James and I bought not too long after we got married for our master bedroom. It's beautiful solid wood and it has been used in our guest room and then ended up in storage for a long time when I no longer had a place for it. I couldn't part with it, I tend to have sentimental attachments to furniture James and I've bought together. (Don't ask me about my meltdown over the desk I bought James for an anniversary present years ago that no longer fit when we moved to wasn't pretty)
However, it was the perfect choice to use in Alexa's new bedroom here. We donated her old bedroom furniture that she'd had since she was was time for something new and more grown up. I mean she is getting ready to turn 21 *eek*! But it needed a chalk paint to the rescue.

*chalk paint color: pure white*

I love Annie Sloan chalk paint. It is expensive, but one can can paint quite a few pieces of furniture because you don't need a lot to cover.  I also water it down a bit in the last 2 coats to smooth everything out. This took 6 coats because I was going from a darker color to a light color...keep that in mind when painting. I cleaned it off good, no sanding needed and it took me two days to finish the entire dresser. I like to let at least the first 3 coats cure overnight before I finish it up. I replaced the old wood knobs with antique-looking porcelain knobs I ordered online.  The total cost of this project was $100 for the paint and the knobs. Not too bad for a fairly large piece of furniture and I love how light and bright it looks in her room now.

After I let the paint cure for 2 days, I then go back and lightly sand to smooth out any paint lines, then put on a coat of clear wax. A few days after that I gave it one more coat of clear wax and buffed it till it was silky smooth.  I also wait to distress the furniture until the paint has cured too, if that's something you want to do, just do that before you use any wax. I didn't do that on the dresser, but I did do it on the dining room chairs below. And then I use a clear wax to protect the paint finish. Annie Sloan also has a dark wax that will darken up your paint color or give it an antiqued look.

This was her old white Ikea nightstand she'd had for a few years. We decided to update it with a gray-blue upgrade. I custom mixed the color with two colors (Napoleonic Blue & Barcelona Orange). As the paint dries it does lighten up, but I did mix the last couple of coats to be a bit darker than what this photo shows.

And here it is all done. I added a fun, silver drawer knob that reminded me of a boat cleat to finish it off.  Last project in her room now is to paint her bookshelf...then I'm DONE in her room...haha probably not.

*paint color: Old White*

We've had an Ethan Allen farm table and spindle chairs for over 14 years.  They've held up beautifully, but the black didn't work for the new house. I wanted everything lightened and brightened up. I will not lie..these chairs were a HUGE pain the bum to paint thanks to all the spindles and legs, ugh it gives me heartburn thinking about it LOL. However I finished all 4 of them up in a day other than waxing them, which as I described above I don't do until the paint has cured a day or two.

For these chairs I wanted them to be distressed a bit like they were before, so I sanded through the paint to get a bit of the black to show through in a few areas..then I waxed them.  We had end chairs that had arms and rush seats that unfortunately did not hold up as well as the table/side chairs did. So we replaced them with two new chairs from Ethan Allen (in the same style) but in robins egg blue. It definitely gave the set a more coastal vibe.

This nightstand was part of the bedroom set that the dresser at top of post came from. I needed something with storage for the guest room of this house, and this fit the bill perfectly.

And here she is all finished up. The color is French Linen and I actually bought a sample pot of it because I wasn't sure about the color. The sample pots are around $12 compared to the quart at $35. Unbelievably I was able to put 4 coats on this nightstand with just the sample pot of paint. Along with the new knobs (black ironwork), the update cost me $36.

My next big project is to paint Riley's old hutch that is a dark cherry wood. It is in it's new home in my office, but it's wayyyy too dark for my liking. I'm dreading it (lol) because I know it's going to take a lot of coats to get it done, but at least it has large areas to paint unlike the spindle chairs ugh.

I'm considering painting it in Creme de Menthe with Maison Blanche Vintage Furniture Paint, instead of a white or cream just to change it up a bit. I'm going to try the white wax instead of the clear for a different look as well.  I need to get it done so it will motivate me to decorate the shelves and organize it better. Right now it's pretty much a dumping ground with things that need a different home.


You can get Annie Sloan chalk paint locally in most places. If you cannot or they don't have what you need, I HIGHLY recommend ordering online from The Purple Painted Lady. They are fantastic for resources, color charts, photo galleries of colors with wax or other paint treatments, and she ships quickly.
I've tried a few other brands of chalk paint and the only other one that I liked almost as much was the Maison Blanche Vintage Furniture Paint (also a chalk paint). They just seem to have the best and easiest coverage in my opinion. I've only ordered this one online HERE as I haven't found it in any local stores near me.

This old post HERE from 2014 shows how I used the dark wax over a lighter color chalk paint for a distressed look. Amazingly James is using this entertainment center in his apartment now and it still looks great.

So that's the latest project post-palooza for you! Have a wonderful weekend!




  2. The redo turned out beautiful. You have such a nack with things. Have missed seeing and reading about you and your family. Miss all your greeting card ideas too. Edna

  3. Wow!!! Love what you've been doing with chalk paint!

  4. Really great to see you back! Had followed you through the crafting side of things and loved seeing your projects and ideas and how you shared life and family along the way, I was able to relate having kids myself the same age and just seeing another like minded crafter across the pond! Never commented before, but having just come by your blog again and finding that you are ok and had just taken a break and now back was really good to know - I wish you and your family all the very best in your new home and new adventures - Enjoy!xx

  5. Oh my gosh Suzanne! These pieces turned out beautifully! I've always enjoyed all you share. Artwork, Copic colouring, pictures of the family and decorations around your beautiful home/homes! Miss you!


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