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Thursday, June 14, 2012

Mid-Century Modern Union Jack with Tutorial

I'm a little late for the Queen's jubilee, but my latest project could be a nice little tribute; it was a labor of love, for sure!

This spring I was curbside shopping (love that term) and found this mid-century modern dresser.  It's not exactly my style, but if it's real wood AND vintage, I won't pass it up.  Here's a terrible before shot; cut me some slack, when I'm curbside shopping I don't hang around too long.

This is such a masculine dresser and it needed a masculine finish.  Most Union Jack dressers I have seen are more of a lower, rectangular dresser, as the flag is more rectangular.  But I've long admired Miss Mustard Seed's take on the Union Jack and wanted to try it.

The first step was to sand off the veneer so the paint would adhere.  Make sure you wear your goggles and respiratory mask; no I am not naked in this picture.  I had on a tank top because I chose to sand in 90 degree weather.  I don't recommend this.  Sanding in 90 degree weather that is.  You need to sand.

Here is a shot of the drawers and dresser sanded and prior to painting:

After reading advice from other bloggers, I decided to paint the entire dresser blue; I had read about other bloggers who painted the entire body in all white and then had to paint multiple coats of blue to cover.  Whether you paint it all blue or all white first doesn't really matter in my opinion.

What does matter, however, is that this project is MUCH easier if you have a projector to project the Union Jack onto the dresser.  Find an image of the Union Jack that works for your dresser.  Here is a great link for correctly reproducing the flag.

Be careful not to bump into the projector; you need to get the image onto the dresser exactly as you want it:

Now we're ready to tape off.  This is where it comes in handy to have a husband who's an engineer.  I have very little patience for measuring and math, which you will definitely need for this project.  Mr. Vintage Novella was a HUGE help in the entire process.

We painted the red on and let it dry overnight.  The next day I painted on the white.  A very important tip when painting on the next color is to make sure you leave a little of the red left as below:

If you don't leave just a hair of the red showing, then you risk an extra stripe, which you DON'T want. When first painting the white. start out on the tape and lightly brush out, which will prevent the white from bleeding under the tape:

Here is more of the white on the dresser.  The taped Xs are there for me as a reminder that this section is blue, and to not paint there.  I need all the reminders I can get:

Then, it's time to take off the tape; it's very nerve-wracking.  I really wasn't sure how it was going to turn out:

Not bad!  You can see a few boo boos that needed to be touched up.  I touched these up with a very fine tipped artist's brush.  Then, I went to the Depot for hardware.  I didn't feel glass knobs would look right because of the period of the dresser.  But I did want something simple that wouldn't distract from the flag:

And, we have a winner.  Something simple, fits the time period, and not outrageously expensive.  Here's an 11:00 at night post when finally finished:

This was a labor intensive project, but the outcome is so worth it.  It's a really dramatic dresser and it would be perfect for a little boy's room.  Or a college student who loves everything British.  I'll definitely do another one some day.  For now, I'm going to rest a little ;-)

Linking up to:

Shabby Creek Cottage
Miss Mustard Seed
Jennifer Rizzo
413 Sparrow Lane

Sunday, June 10, 2012

I Get By {with a little help}

It's a VERY busy week for me, getting ready for the first show of the summer.  I've never been afraid to ask for help and I have had quite a bit, especially lately.

My mom/business partner is always helpful.  Whenever I ask for something, she never says no, whether it's cutting out templates for map decoupaging (more on that later) or riding along on a Craig's List hunt.  Thanks, Mommy.  I do not have a solo pic of my mom, but below is a pic of my mom, brother, and me:

I also have to thank my good friends Jen and Heather for being amazing pickers for me; Heather is always on the lookout and even called me from an estate sale this weekend to let me know about a steal of a dresser. Thanks, Jen and Heather Ann!

My neighbor friend Jackie, is an amazing photographer and she recently helped me style a photo to represent my work.  She took the photos and did an incredible job and she did this all for FREE because I let her use some of my vintage items in her photography business.  Below is her photograph and styling. Thanks, Jackie!

And last, but certainly not least, is my gratitude to Mr. Vintage Novella.  I rely the most on his help, and I definitely couldn't do this job without him.  And even when he complains that our three car garage can now fit one car, or that our dining room table is a work table, he still helps me.  Thank you, Honey.  Love you.

Will post pics of pieces for sale later this week!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Shabby to Chic

This poor little dresser was a dirty, shabby (and not in a good way) discard.  As soon as I found it, I knew it needed some love.

The color was actually a nice sea-glass aqua.  It had potential.  And, actually, a potential home.  I knew my neighbor was looking for a small dresser for her daughters' bedroom at their little lake cottage.  She came over to look at it and we worked out a plan to paint it cream and she would bring me some cute new knobs.  It turned out darling and beachy and cottagey if cottagey is a word.  I'm declaring it is.