Thursday, August 26, 2010

And since we're talking about Venetian Plaster...

It's been a few years since I've done any high-end plaster work, simply because there wasn't a call for it in the other cities I've lived in since leaving FL.  But now that I'm back, I'm really glad that people are wanting it more than ever!

Matte peachy plaster over a chocolate glazed wall.  Don't mind the blue tape.  :-)

Close-up of the same wall.

Matte plaster again.  Two layers of green over a dark tan wall.

High-gloss mirror finished, yummy creamy color.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

What To Do??? Update at the bottom...

I purchased this poor peach dresser for a ridiculously low price.  The legs need a little rebuilding (you can see the brown spot on the right foot, which is a piece knocked off), but the issue isn't really noticeable now that it's stripped.  In stripping the paint off of the body today, I found that the original paint was mint green.  I don't know what peoples obsession with mint green was, but it seems that everything I have touched - be it walls, furniture, what have you - has been mint green at one point in time!  But I digress...

I spent today stripping and sanding.  When I wiped down the dresser, there was still some residual peach dust that left an amazing beachy weathered patina, that unfortunately didn't really come through in the photograph...

When I purchased the piece, I intended on painting it a creamy white and glazing it... maybe a raw umber, maybe a greyish color.  But now I'm digging this patina!  I know it will go away once I completely clean it, but the question I'm left with is do I try to reproduce the patina or go forward with painting it?  

I haven't touched the drawers yet, and I noticed a pretty thick area that I have a feeling is someones attempt at fixing the veneer underneath with joint compound.  If that's the case, then I definitely have to paint it, but if I'm wrong then I'm stuck with this dilemma!

UPDATE:  Well, I got all of the drawers stripped, and it's worse than I thought.  Turns out what I thought was joint compound was actually caulk... Who would use caulk to repair wood??  I'm trying to dig it out, but the damage itself is pretty severe, and I'm not sure if the repair is worth getting the pieces apart.  Two other drawers are damaged as well... good junks of veneer ripped out and filled with caulk.  I'm thinking the best plan is to either paint and glaze the entire thing, or maybe just the drawers and do the weathered patina on the body.  Maybe soft black drawers with big vintage silver or tarnished gold knobs.  Maybe...

Friday, August 20, 2010

Ze Cartouche'....

This was a commissioned piece.  Every surface in the clients house was silver and gold, and she had purchased this to go over the flat-screen TV that was framed in trim in her bedroom.  When I picked up the cartouche, it was just primed white fiberglass.  Wish I had before pictures.

The decorator suggested a simple gold-leaf, but I saw so much more potential, especially considering the design sense of the client.  So the client gave me free-reign to do with it what I wished.  Love that!

I started by gold-leafing the cartouche, then added a raw umber glaze.

Then I hit all the high points with silver.

As much as the decorator fought it, I had to silver-leaf the center....

Which then also needed some antiquing...

I knocked down the silver to dull it out a bit and sprayed a few clear coats.

And viola!!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

And some more pieces....

Went hunting yesterday with mom, who just so happens to be the ultimate bargain hunter and project piece finder... and hit the jackpot!  Thanks mom!  I think I'm done hunting for a while.  Time to get to work!

Twin/single head, foot and side boards.

Cedar chest.  Top needs extensive repair, or I might just build a new one.  Really cool hardware.

Buffet server.  Some veneer work.  Mom may have already reserved it.

So many layers of paint!!  Really excited to see what's underneath it all.

So I've got my work cut out for me.  Lots of stripping old paint before moving on to the paint booth.  I'm debating whether or not to leave the twin sized bed alone... just refinish it instead of painting it.  It's a beautiful piece, but not vintage.  We'll see what happens.

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Little Gem

Something told me to write a second email to the person that had the writing desk, so I did.  This morning I got a phone call from a woman that said she had never received the first email.   We set to meet up on my way home from work.

Turns out she did kind of know what she had. She didn't realize it was a writing desk (or a secretary), but someone had decided to turn it into possibly a speaker box or something similar at one point. They notched out vents in the back and the sides, and covered the sides with fabric. When I originally looked at the pictures, I thought this was caning.

But it's a sturdy piece, and I'm sure that I can just add some caning to the sides.  Not sure what I'm going to do about the particle board box they installed inside... maybe laminate it, maybe take it out (kind of afraid what I would find though), maybe just caulk and paint.  It does need to be completely stripped.  The woman had attempted refinishing it herself and got a little over-zealous with the poly, and it sagged everywhere!  But it's a beautiful piece that I'm sure will make someone very happy one day.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Project Time!!

I've been going through so many peoples blogs in the past few days, and I have to say, I am so inspired!  So today I decided to go on CraigsList to see if there was anything worth purchasing.  And surprisingly there were quite a few goodies!

What I ended up purchasing today:

Dresser in really bad shape.
Beautiful vanity, again in really bad shape.

What I will be picking up tomorrow:

Full (or double) sized head and foot board.
Gorgeous little chair that the seat needs re-caned.

Luckily I rebuild and blend veneers really well, and if the damage is too extensive I can just install a new piece.  I do believe all of these pieces are going to get a paint job.  I was thinking something either light and creamy and glazed or a soft black for the two pieces I purchased today.  Not sure about the other pieces, because I just haven't seen them yet!  I should be in the paint booth all day Tuesday and Wednesday, so we'll see what happens then.  Maybe the paint choices will be as simple as what I happen to have in the pot those days.

There is also a little gem of a piece that I am waiting for an email response on.  The person listed it as "I'm not quite sure what it is, but it may have had a radio in it at one point".  It's actually a small writing desk complete with a cut-out for an ink bottle that is screaming to be re-finished!  And pick-up is right down the street from my house.  Fingers crossed!