Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Patience - The French Chest Makeover

I've had this small chest of drawers for years, I've kept a load of household tools in it and basically left it in a dark corner of the garage.  BUT NOW (drum-roll...) she's been turned into a lovely French Chest of Drawers.

I like to start with the reveal - here's how this chest looked to start with...

Made of solid wood - no veneer here dear! And I think this must have been someone's pet project at some point because it's been made up from reclaimed wood.  I wondered if it was part of a desk originally.  The sides and back are very basic bits of wood - but it's part of the charm. You'll see.

So I've used for tools storage - it was never created to be loved and admired... until NOW that is.

I started out with a couple of coats of Old White chalk paint.  Did a bit of fixing and sanding the drawers and then added Paris Grey on the front panels.  I used masking tape to create the grey borders around the top and sides.

The old handles are nice, solid brass.  They are lovely as they are with the patina built up over years, but once I looked at them on the grey and white I realised they needed a coat of Old White too.

I didn't do lots of sanding work to the wood - I wanted to leave it as natural and bashed as possible - naturally shabby this one.  I visited the Graphics Fairy and found the French graphics I wanted to use.
Patience!  for the top.

Grain sack for the sides.

So this is how the drawers look BEFORE I added clear wax. The clear wax seals and protects the chest.  It also brings out more of the character.  The next three pics are after waxing....

The white and grey are take on a more vintage hue.

This is her behind - you never know where she'll end up.  Keep it pretty.

These are the handles after a treatment with the wax too.  Another peacock tail design (like the bentwood chair I did earlier which is here).

I blinged up the inside of the drawers.  They were all given coats of Paris Grey and gold added around the inside of the drawers. (I just can't keep away from that antique gold, sigh...)

What do you think? I love to do French refurb!!

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Stag Head Chest of Drawers

After my Applecross holiday, I have gone TOTALLY over the top on this chest of drawers.

I've started with the reveal - here's how this fella looked when I found him.

So he's been this week's transformation project.  Originally, this was a nice bit of 1950s furniture.
I recently bought some Old Ochre chalk paint, which is very creamy...

I removed the handles and gave him a couple of coats of paint and found the right stag head for some photocopy transfer.  

These are the three drawers with the transfers directly onto the paint. I must just share a stupid moment mistake.  I transferred the three stags the first time and went to put the drawers back to check alignment and guess what?  I had completed two of the transfers but the drawers were facing the wrong way.
MORAL: Always make sure your drawers are not back to front!!!

This is how the chest looked after the drawers were put back together.  I waxed the entire chest with clear wax.  Then I started to add antique gold on the handles and around the drawers.  Which is when I started to think about adding MORE...  Starting with the top.

The paint has been 'shabbied up' a bit, then gold added around the edges and inside the lip of the drawer, it looks good when you open it.

I added gold to the feet too.  Too much gold?  Noooooooo....

And here he is again - Now as Stag Head Chest of Drawers - aall finished!  What do you think? 

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Applecross - Spring in the Highlands

Here's our pics from a week's May break in the Highlands at Applecross.  I get a lot of people reading my blog from the USA but also Poland, China and Russia - so here's a bit about this lovely part of Scotland.

The Applecross Peninsula is a five hour drive north from Glasgow, through Glen Coe up to Fort William and then off into single track driving for a couple of hours along Lochcarron and finally you get to the spectacular Bealach na Ba...

Up and over the most SCARY single lane, switch-back roads.

Up into the mists (apparently it was snowing the day before we arrived so avoided a total white out).

But the rolling mists at the top were bad enough anyway!  We were staying on the Estate in a lovely little cottage.

Whether the weather is good or bad, I never get tired of seeing the clouds and mist on the hills... majestic and breathtaking.  My spirits just soar away!

So we had lots of walking on beaches...

Applecross is situated in Wester Ross across from Skye - the views of the Cuillins of Skye are spectacular - at any time of day.

Just went with the constantly changing weather

Those sunsets...

The morning mists (sigh)

And of course, it wouldn't be right with out the Highland Cows!

  Seeing an Oyster Catcher having a scratch.

Or a couple of geese hanging around those single track roads.

Lambs were bouncing around everywhere

And there were always a few deer hanging around.

Peering at us as we walk by.

The view from the pub was great!!!

Fifi had a wonderful time too.  At one point a farmer stopped his car for a good ole chat when we were out for a walk, he thought I'd pinched one of his little lambs.  An easy mistake...

And we had RAINBOWS - soooo beautiful.

The light from the storms lit the heather and hills - totally breathtaking.

Here's Applecross Church, part of the 'coffin route' as marked on the map.  People would walk across the hills from many miles away to use the church.

This is the track behind our cottage leading to the Church, beautiful isn't it?  Too early for midges :-)

And a few pics of the stunning Applecross Bay on a costal walk to Sand (yes a bay called Sand).

You can just see the row of houses and the pub on the front of the bay from here.

Driving around the peninsula I drove past this in the middle of nowhere, screeched to a halt, reversed.. did I see that right?  Eggs, socks, hats and jam for sale??  FANTASTIC!!

The mornings were always so peaceful...

We had a wonderful time here - I hope you liked seeing some of the photos :-)