Sunday, May 20, 2012

Nightmare turned dreamy

So many things have changed since I lasted posted. I won't bore you with details, but we moved, so that's taken a lot of my time and energy. After finally getting settled in, I jumped head first into what I thought would be a normal refinishing job, and ended up being the first piece of furniture to literally bring me to tears. Oh, and it took 5 weeks to finish. Here are the gory details: 

Here she is before I started. No knobs, but sturdy, and she was so full of potential! I was so excited to start! 

Prepping - I painted a little corner to see if my inspiration was going to work...IT DID! 

The first layer of stripping....

revealed not one, not two or even three, but FOUR different colors, and probably 2 layers of each color. That is 8 layers of paint, people!! 

I started out trying the CitriStrip...it smelled nice, and turned everything this lovely tangerine color, but in the end, it was not strong enough to strip this beauty.  

See how ugly?! All those pretty cutouts that I was so excited about turned out to be the bain of my existence. More on that later. 

Serious gunk under all this! 

These drawers were rough, but under all 8 layers of paint - 

Tada! So nice and almost clean! 

After weeks and weeks of stripping, literally, (well, I was only working at night, and maybe 3 nights a week, but it took weeks!) I was still stuck at this stage. See all that black and orange gunk? It was awful. 

Now, go back up to the top and look closely at those beautiful spindle legs. I don't know why, but I never took pictures of them during the nightmare stage. They are the very reason that I almost gave up the whole things. I.COULD.NOT.GET.THEM.CLEANED. 8 layers of paint on those babies! EIGHT! I cried, I bled (thanks to the steel wool and bristly brushes I used once without remembering my gloves) and I may have even swore. Once. Maybe twice. Who's counting, right? ;) Finally, I got so desperate that I was about to junk it, and desperate times call for desperate measures. I emailed a fabulous lady who has mad refinishing skills - Amy at The Salvage Collection - and begged for her wisdom. She gave me some great advise, which I followed, and some courage, which I needed, and got back to work. Four days later I finished. (THANKS SO MUCH, AMY!)

Here she is in all her glory - 

Well, a sneak peek. I had one last decision to make after the color. The top had been damaged and looked a bit sad, but after distressing and glazing, I liked it! I felt like it represented all the struggles that we'd been through (even though she came with the damage) - But I didn't know if she would sell well like this. So....

I debated. And fabric lined the drawers. 

Then, I decided to throw caution to the wind and I got out my trusty Mod Podge and decoupaged the fabric on the top as well! :D 

And fell in love. *sigh* All that hard work and crying and swearing  stuff paid off! 
I posted it on Facebook to show my friends and SOLD it in less than an hour. :) Yes, I did a Happy Dance.  

So there is my story of how a seemingly harmless looking desk turned into a nightmare, but ended up dreamy. I was a little sad to see it go, after all that we'd been through. But in the end, I think it's in a great place being loved by someone else. 

The End. 

P.S. The paint is Rustoleum Aqua, and the fabric came from Hobby Lobby. Just, ya know, in case someone was wondering. :) 

1 comment:

amy of the salvage collection said...

yes, your pain is felt by me! i try to work on a few pieces at a time so when i hit a wall on one, i can still feel good about the others! she was worth it in the end... beautiful!