Friday, March 30, 2012

A little Bling

OK, so I'll be the first to admit it. I'm sorta addicted. Just Sorta.

I really like silver leaf.

Lucky for me, my new found obsession coincides with two custom orders needing a little bling, bling.

Oh, sweet serendipity. ;)

Here's a little bombe dresser redone with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Paris Grey on the body, Paris Grey & Old White Striae on the drawers, and Graphite underneath silver leafing on the details.
The entire piece was triple waxed--first Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax to seal it, Dark Soft Wax to antique it, and another coat of Clear Soft Wax to finish it up!

Purty, Purty!

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Color Theory 101

Using color on furniture can be so intimidating. I think that's why so many of us love white & beige.

Safe. Secure. Goes with everything.

But think of your home decor magazines--how often do the decorated rooms they feature include a wow! piece in that totally catches your eye in a crazy color that you just LOVE
--but you'd never have the guts to buy or paint yourself??


Well, I think one of the reasons we tend to shy away from color is that we don't know enough about color theory. 
So I thought I'd share some nuggets of knowledge I've gotten from some of the great masters of paint!


So, here's a short class in color theory based on the information I've received in my training classes from these great ladies!

Here's the color wheel:
Each color has an opposite in the color wheel:
Red vs. Green
Orange vs. Blue
Yellow vs. Purple

Each color also has it's analogous colors just beside it on the color wheel.
So, for example:
Blue has purple and green as it's analogous colors.

And in theory, complementary colors can be combined to make black, but since theory isn't often reality, a neutral gray color is usually the result.

There are warm colors: Red, Orange, Yellow
And Cool colors: Green, Blue, Purple.
Like, I said. Short Lesson. 

So here are a few examples of how I pick colors for furniture:

I'm not a huge fan of super bright colors, but when combined with a neutral to tone them down, they work for my color sensitivities. 

All of the colors I list are Annie Sloan Chalk Paint colors

Here is bright Barcelona Orange paired with neutral Coco. 
Note: I consider Coco the "warm" neutral brown of the Annie Sloan Chalk Paint line,
as opposed to French Linen, which feels cooler to me.

 I like to pair warm colors with warm neutrals,
and cool colors with cool neutrals.

I like to use power colors sparingly.
Here is a bright warm pop used in moderation to liven up a deep cool color:
Deep neutral Graphite, with a dab of Aubusson Blue, and a pop of Red.

I tend to use complementary colors together rarely.  Here Red works for me with this blue-ish grey--but  blue's true complementary--orange--would have been just much for me. And too Broncos.

  Guess I'm not quite on the color blocking trend yet!

Another trend of mine is using analogous colors because of their relaxing, low conflict nature.
Think Beach.
Here is a  example of used analogous colors: Chateau Grey (which looks green) and Louis Blue.
With a pop of saturated brown for interest!
So, when choosing colors, I guess you first need to ask yourself these questions:

 Do I want high contrast to create energy?
Low contrast for a soothing sensation?

Do you gravitate toward cool colors: Blues, greens, purples?
Warm Colors: Reds, Oranges, Yellows?

Do you want to use neutrals and a pop of color?

Hope this helps in your coloring making decisions!

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Friday, March 23, 2012

How do I do it all??

People often ask me how do I do it all?

4 kids five and under,
hubby in grad school,
running my own store & business,
 . . . .
yes, I know I need to find time for Pinterest.

 Maybe in between dreaming and awaking up??

Well, I'm here to spill the beans. My little secret.
Child Laborers
Yes, you're right. That's Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Chateau Grey.  It's the only paint I let my kids play with. ;)

And they're soooo helpful!

They work cheap--
in fact sometimes all it takes is letting them eat my staging props . . .
Strawberries?? What strawberries?? Where did my 'pop of red' go??

 And yes, I let my children dress themselves. I completely believe in choosing your battles.

So if you would like to accessorize pink with rose, fuchsia, magenta, hot pink, and baby pink.

 Have at it my daughter!

I feel so completely blessed to have a job that I LOVE that allows me to be with my children as much as possible.  Life is good.  I love that my children think Lowe's is the next best place to Disneyland.

 I couldn't think of a better gift to give my children
than the gift of a creative mind.

Thanks so much for stopping by!


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tutorial: Vintage Gilded Picture Frames

Yeah, Okay, to be honest I have no idea if "vintage gilded" is even a real term--but it seems to describe the effect I wanted. I was given the task of redoing a laurel leaf mirror frame to make it look like the mercury glass my sweet client has in her home. So I had to do some home work, and I thought I'd share with all of you!

What do you need?

Metal Leafing--in this case I used silver--which is actually aluminum--cause, well, we're working on a budget right??
Metal Adhesive--known as 'size'
A soft natural bristle brush
Annie Sloan Chalk Paint--well that's what I use cause I don't want to sand and prime!!
Annie Sloan Dark Wax
A few throw away rags for buffing

And the 'thing' to be silvered!!

 The Volunteers: one faux gold and one wood color picture frame:
 I used a left over can (can you tell? It's not obvious is it??) of Graphite color Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, which happened to have a bit of French Linen color Annie Sloan Chalk Paint mixed in,to paint the wood picture frame. Traditionally faux mercury glass is backed with Prussian Blue, but none of that one hand!

What's a girl scout to do??


Here are the frames after having size applied. It looks milky when it goes on, but dries clear. How long do you need to let it dry?? Oh about one load of dishes, one load of laundry, one sweep of the floor, dress 3 kids who happen to be naked at 5 in the evening, answer a few emails and texts . . . about that long. ;)
 I used the easy kind of leafing--it is already backed with a piece of waxed paper. You can get the regular stuff, but it is a bit tricky to handle for a novice.

Lay down the metal leafing on the frame. Use your clean, dry brush to gently nudge it into the nooks and crannies.
  Lift the paper, and continue nudging until it seems mostly stuck all over. Continue this all over the piece!

My 2 picture frames--a 5x7 and 8 x10 used 9 sheets.

 After you have gilded the entire piece, use your clean, dry brush to gently rub off any excess.
 Ok, here is your basically gilded frame. You can stop here if you like. But it was just too shiny and metallic looking for me.
 So I used Annie Sloan Soft Wax Dark over the entire piece to age it and deepen the patina. 
Left frame is waxed, right isn't waxed yet.
And here are my vintage darlings!!
 What do you think--does this remind you of faux mercury glass?
 I think I'm lovin' it!
 Hum, yeah, I might have to do more!

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New Orleans and Meeting Annie Sloan

Well, I could complain about how many tech glitches I've had in the past month--but let's just sum up by saying that all the photos I took in New Orleans and stored on my new computer and my NEW external hard drive got corrupted. And since I have wiped my NEW computer to return it (not happy) I lost everything. I had to steal from my own Facebook page!! Here's what I have, luckily there are some cute ones--but mostly artsy fartsy--

The Fabulous Annie Sloan and myself in New Orleans

How amazing was it to be taught by the original master herself!!

 Really she takes all the fear out of painting. We Americans love our straight lines and perfect finishes a bit too much. She's so organic when she paints; she doesn't mind a bit of 'grunge' in the paint, brush strokes, accidental bits of color from an old piece of sand paper--whatever!--for Annie it's all about letting the piece of furniture speak to you. Let serendipity happen and you'll find the true inner artist!!

 I mean--we can all go to IKEA and get a factory finish right??? With Annie Sloan Chalk Paint you're getting a hand painted piece of ART!! She was so inspiring! Let go and let art happen.

  Playing with the new features in Picasa---Here are some pics of the set up tables before we started our workshop.
 More pretty pics

the Catholic Church in the French Quarter of NOLA

I love the juxtaposition of the beautiful french curvy iron work and the modern billboard--gator and all!

Love these colors!!

 Yeah, ok I know it's just a rose--but in March!! We still have snow in Spokane folks!

 Here's the Fabulous Spokane set! Val Oxendahl and Nancy Jones of Artworks Spokane and Me!
 Ok, somebody else said it . . . Snack time?  I'm pretty sure this is the ugliest bird ever!!
 Jolie Designs treated us to a magnificent dinner at the stunning Elms Mansion! Here's the sunsetting as we went in.

And the sunsetting on the gardens . . .
Thanks guys for hanging in there with me! I wish I had more pics to share. You still have a chance to be taught by Annie Sloan herself! Click here to see who to sign up! 5 more stops are still open.
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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A bit on the edge . . . or just safe?

It's funny. I remember having a conversation with my SIL years ago about kitchen counter tops.  I had selected a very, very dark brown laminate top to go in my new home, only to realize that it was the exact same counter top she had put in her home years earlier.  For me it was on the edge. I had always had a light counter top, so going dark was a risk.
For her it was safe, she was used to dark counter tops.

So it is with this dresser. I felt so out on a limb going with this custom mix of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in 2/3Graphite 1/3 Coco.  But I'm sure there are so many of you for whom dark grey is the SAFE color choice.

Where's your comfort zone?  For me Blue is comfort. Red is scary!!

That's the fun part about painting for other people. I get to do a little bit of it all!

Thanks for stopping by,


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