This post is brought to you by Plaid and Blueprint Social. The opinions are my own.
I am way better at buying furniture to make over than the actual furniture makeover. Like waaay better at buying. When I moved states some stuff couldn’t come along. There were so many chests and tables and chairs that wound up hanging out on the corner waiting for somebody else to take home.
I was so disappointed in the whole thing. Disappointed that my Uhaul wasn’t big enough. Disappointed that there were so many things I never got to. Disappointed that some awesome stuff could have been even more awesome.
And I’ll tell you the 2 reasons why I typically don’t get my furniture makeovers done. 1 – I don’t have tons of experience when it comes to these projects so I often put them off out of a lack of confidence. 2 – I don’t have the skills to use paints and waxes and other materials well enough to not ruin every piece of furniture I touch. And there we have it.
Now I can prep something wicked all day long to get ready to makeover but then it sits there, naked without veneer and hardware forever until I eventually hand it back over to Goodwill. But I’m pretty stoked because I have gotten to try out the Folk Art Home Decor paints and waxes AND the new Mod Podge Chalk formula. And guess what? They’re so easy to use. Like, so, so, so easy to use. To the point that my dining room table is getting a new outfit very, very soon. Wahoo!
Why do I like these products? The Folk Art paint is actually a form of acrylic and it dries super fast. Sometimes when I have started projects I’ve quickly dumped them because it took too long for things to dry for my ADD riddled attention span. I would set them someplace like the garage to finish for my next coat and, ooh, puppy! and that’s the end of that. But this business dries fast. I started this around 10 in the morning one day and I just kept on working on it until about 2 or 3 that afternoon. I could only do that because everything dried so well and so quickly. I’d paint the base and then the drawers and by the time I got around to the base it was game on for the next coat. It was freaking awesome.
I also like these products because the paint and wax are super easy to use. I have no confidence when it comes to wax. I have messed things up using wax in the past. Somehow I put it on funny and it never has a flat look. Like maybe you can tell the crazy way I put it on or something. Or I can’t buff it out well enough to get a nice, even look. Whatever the issues I encounter they have been big, big problems for me. But the chalk Mod Podge is the same as almost every other formula so I can use it really well. And the Folk Art Home Decor Wax is so easy to use. I put it on, kind of crazy because that’s how I roll, and it still turned out perfect in the end.
So I’m going to quit chatting you up about this business and show you how I used it…
- For this project you will need:
- Folk Art Home Decor Chalk (Tuscan Red & Java)
- Folk Art Home Decor Wax (Antique)
- Mod Podge Ultra Matte Chalk
- Textured paper
- Razor blade
- Paint brushes
- Various tools may be necessary, e.g. iron, metal scraper, etc.
Here is my ugly duckling of a side table. I got it at a flea market for around $15. Normally I would balk at the price but this sucker is 100% wood with dovetail joints and dowel pegs instead of screws or nails. Except 2 little nails on the front. See ’em?
My table has seen better days and the veneer on it was not salvageable. In some places it was great, like mostly on the drawers but the sides and front were awful. I have used this table as my nightstand since moving to Texas because it was the easiest of all of my junk to get to and it’s one of the few pieces of furniture that made the cut and didn’t hit the curbside back in Oklahoma. It is sturdy and the bones are fabulous.
The first thing I needed to do was remove that old veneer. Now remember how I said I can prep furniture like a freaking wizard? Here’s a quick tip for you… since most of my veneer was falling off it was easy enough to remove but there was the occasional area where it wasn’t going to budge. To help remove it grab a hot iron and place it on top of the veneer, preferably near a corner or an edge.
The heat softens up the glue beneath the veneer making it far easier to remove. Use a metal scraper to wedge in between the veneer and the wood of the piece and wiggle it inside. Keep the heat on for up to several minutes to loosen up that glue. When you can feel the give, use the scraper to help the veneer along. It should peel right off. Boom!
After removing the veneer and sanding the surface smooth and free of what was left behind of the old glue I put my first coat of paint on, Tuscan Red.
And while the red alone is quite lovely it was too, well, red. So I went over that with a coat of Java and then another coat of red. The dark base helps to make the red richer rather than brighter. The color below, unless well primed, almost always shows through and changes the color of the coat above. That’s why you often use gray primer under red rather than white. The more you know :)
Next up on my list was to use my Ultra Matte Chalk Mod Podge to fancy up them thar drawers. I first went over the drawer inside and outside, minus the bottom and back, with Java colored paint after removing the hardware with a screwdriver.
And here’s this stuff you’re hearing so much about… Ultra Matte Chalk Mod Podge. This stuff is awesome. It’s both a glue and a sealer so you can use it to stick and seal. I love a multipurpose product!
Put a heavy coat of Mod Podge onto the face of the drawer.
Apply your textured paper, looking for a pretty part of the design to feature on the front side.
Now I got this paper at an art store, Jerry’s Artarama in Houston and the paper selection was fabulous. I’ve never actually been to an art store before Mr. Rob needed some frames to get ready for his art show in January (I’m so proud!!!) and I tagged along. It turns out he was ready to go before I was. So many beautiful papers! The instant I saw this textured beauty I snapped it up for $4.17. That seems like quite a bit but it is a huge, poster board sized piece and it feels like it has some cotton to it. It’s soft and very pliable.
Allow the paper to stick for a few minutes and the Mod Podge to start doing its thang and glue that sucker down.
After those few minutes go ahead and bust out a craft knife or razor blade and trim the edges nice and smooth. The better your blade the better your cut, FYI.
Place something heavy on the fronts to allow the paper to fully glue down.
Grab some antique wax and start rubbing it onto the wood. Apply with one rag and remove the excess with another. I wound up using bandannas as they don’t have lint and left me with a great surface. Rags from scrap fabric could work well, too, just make sure no frayed and frizzies are around to stick to your wax.
The wax will naturally collect in ridges and imperfections to make a nice, aged look. It also darkens the color a bit more which I was after.
Also, you might notice that my red top coat is hardly perfect and that’s totally okay, too. Since faux age is what we are seeking perfection looks totally out of place!
And just in case you’re worried that I don’t keep it real around here this is what my work space looked like :) We have a sofa that’s going to goodwill on the left, and we’ve got our new sofa from IKEA not put together yet, but covered in quilts in the meantime (the box got wet when we were driving it home and we were worried about mildew). And then we’ve got a house that is just flat out a mess. 100% authenticity up in here :)
I truly don’t know how necessary it is, but I went ahead and went over my paper with a coat of Mod Podge to seal it, especially since it was so porous.
On top of that it was time for some more Tuscan Red!
After painting both drawer fronts the first was already dry so I moved on to aging it with the wax. Working in small sections brush wax on, making sure to get a good amount in the cracks and crevices. Immediately wipe the excess away and move to the next section. Now I had an area where white kept coming through at the bottom right and I wound up going over it with paint and wax until the color stuck. No clue why that happened but oh, well.
Look at that beauty! I had planned on cleaning up and faux aging the handles when I wondered, why not just go with the real aging? If I decide it looks too aged I can always remove them and work on it but I dig the look like it is.
To get the darkness I wanted on my fronts I wound up doing 2 quick coats of the wax paying better attention to the nooks and crannies the second time around.
The painted drawer sides give the piece a professional and finished look in my opinion and I really feel like it was worth the little extra time.
Now isn’t this little corner of the living room amazing? We’re looking for new chairs to place near this table, that actually brings the red in from the accent wall across the room. The rest of the room is a tragic mess above is still there, it just got scooted back for pics! Even if messy, I’m glad that our home is finally coming along.
Next time you spy that piece of furniture that has great bones but needs a little TLC don’t hesitate because if I can do it with Folk Art Home Decor Chalk and Wax and Mod Podge Ultra Matte Chalk, so can you!