Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Two Before & Afters

How is your week going?  We've been taking care of some much-needed work outside.  By "we" I mean I've done the hard work of hiring someone else to do the job!  Seriously, we have so many garden beds around the house there is just no way I can keep them weeded by myself, so I have some helpers.  Between everything that's been going on, I haven't had a chance to work on anything but the gardens in the front of the house, so the weeds have started to take over in the other beds. Two people worked for five hours Sunday, and there is probably another two day's worth of work to be done.   Plus we need some hardscape repairs, and we had to have a large dead tree taken down. I believe in DIY -- but there's a limit!

I do have a couple of paint projects though that I did all by my lonesome to show you today.  These are a couple of pieces that I sold at Lucketts.

I picked up this entry or side table at a thrift shop for about $30.  It was solid mahogany.

I loved the tiered edges and the spiral legs ...

But let me tell you, this was not my favorite thing to paint!  The six spiral legs were a pain in the 'ole patooti.

But I persevered, and painted it in ASCP Old White, followed by a light distressing and a couple of coats of clear wax. 

I loved it, and it got lots of comments, but I was surprised that it was one of the last things I sold at Lucketts.  One thing I noticed was my colored furniture (greys, blues and taupes) sold almost immediately, while the white furniture--which used to be so popular--sat for a bit. I saw that in some of the other booths around me as well. I'm still a big fan of white furniture, but for the pieces I'm painting to sell, I'm thinking I'll lean toward other colors. 

The dresser behind it started out like this.

I found it on Craigslist for $35. It was solid maple, with dovetail drawers, bracket feet and Chippendale hardware. It was in great condition structurally, but the top had some issues. 

The label inside said it was made by Jamestown Sterling Corp, Jamestown NY.  Whenever I find a label in something I bought, I try to find some info on it.  I wouldn't want to paint something that was rare or a true antique (hey, I watch Antiques Roadshow too!), plus I just like learning a bit about the history of the piece.  I found out that long before High Point or the Chicago Furniture Mart, Jamestown used to be known as the "Furniture Capital of the World."   The town opened its furniture exposition in 1917.  Jamestown Sterling used to be one of the biggies.

I decided to stain the top of the dresser.  I sanded it, conditioned it, and put on a coat of Dark Walnut.

I had a problem with some strange spotting where the stain didn't take, which you can barely see in the top left of the above photo.  So I sanded it, conditioned it, and stained it again.  This time it turned out fine, and after two coats of stain and two coats of wipe-on poly it was perfect.

I painted the body of the dresser in ASCP Paris Grey, and went over it lightly with a dark wax.

I taped off the drawers, and did the outer area in Paris Grey, and the inner area in Old White.  I lightly distressed the edges, and painted the hardware in Paris Grey.

Sorry I don't have nicely styled photos of either of these pieces, but I was in a hurry to get ready for the sale!

This piece sold pretty quickly--it was a really nicely built dresser.  But here's the thing, the person who bought it is going to paint it black.  Luckily she loved the top, otherwise all my work would have been for nothing! 

Now I understand that the paint treatment may not be everyone's style, but I wondered why she didn't just look on Craigslist and get a piece if she was going to paint it anyway. I guess not everyone is a Craigslist Junkie like me!  Apparently it was the perfect size, and she liked the style.

A sale is a sale, and she paid what I was asking for it.  I think it will look lovely in black!

Sharing at:

Savvy Southern Style: Wow Us Wednesdays

DIY by Design: Swing into Spring

Elizabeth & Co.: Be Inspired

No Minimalist Here: Open House Party


  1. they both look fabulous!
    i had someone buy one of my all time favorite dressers i have done in black..... it was a huge triple dresser. when she got to my house she asked me if i followed three men and a lady because she had a yellow dresser she loved and she was thinking of painting it yellow like that one. it happens! not everyone knows what a REAL bargain is like we do!

  2. I love a great set of legs ;) I had a VERY similar table, but with slightly thicker legs, and I totally bailed and sprayed the base... was that bad? I totally painted the top Provence so that's good right!? Awesome job, way to stick to it! - Susan

  3. I often pay more for the perfect piece, even if I'm going to change it completely. Sometimes it's hard to find just the right size, style, etc. I love your paint job, but the black with a wood top will look great too. I have to say I'm getting over the white and favoring random colored pieces. I seem to keep picking up things in the "perfect" green or red.

  4. I agree that those spindle legs are a bugger to paint. I am your newest followeer and so glad I found you. I am new to painting furniture. I used to do a lot of stripping and staining back a few years, but I have been inspired and bourght a couple of things at garage sales on Saturday. I like the white table, but it's good to know that the colors move better now. Right now I'm doing these for me, but I might venture into the the other world later. Loved the dresser. You inspired this newby.

  5. They both look great. I love what you did, but I've often sold pieces that the buyer was going to redo. If they pay my price, they own it, and I could care less what they do. LOL

  6. Your dresser looks like a complete match to mine!!!
    Your newest follower - would love to have you follow back

  7. I am amazed at how wonderful these pieces look. Great job!

    Jocelyn @

  8. Your work is stunning. I love the dresser, maple one. My mother has two full bedroom sets of it. It has not one ding, chip or ring on it. Mint condition and she's had it for 62 years. Her wedding gift from my father! In another color, I might like this set - gets me to thinking!

    Thanks for sharing,

  9. Love the table! I was sent here by our mutual friend Patty in MN. If you have a moment visit me at Bad Rabbit Vintage - badrabbitvintage.blogspot.com.

    I would love to go to Lucketts! Maybe some day.


  10. I love both pieces just the way you painted them. Interesting thoughts on white. I just painted a few pieces white because I had not done it in a while. We'll see what happens. And I agree, I'd rather not know that someone wants to immediately paint over my work. But I guess in the end, as long as it found a happy home!

  11. Both pieces turned out wonderful! I love the dresser just as it is but I guess the new owner had other ideas. Thanks for linking to the Open House Party.


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