Monday, December 19, 2011

Refinishing the table part 3

I've lost count of how
many finishing coats I have on
this table.
I'm thinking 7... with one more to go.

Hazy & bumpy to the touch
Each coat either ends up streaky or has air bubbles.
So for the fifth attempt I went and bought a can of spray varnish 
hoping that would produce better results but instead it 
turned out to be a disaster.
It ended up hazy and foamy.  I let the spray dry overnight and
when I checked it out in the morning the finish was bumpy and rolled up
into gunky little balls when I rubbed my hand along it.
Four complete sandings later the spray coat was removed and I went
back to using a brush but the air bubbles still keep rearing their ugly little heads.  
The top measures out to be 70" long ... I wonder if the size of the surface has something to do with it.

Air bubbles and streaks ... oh you dirty dawg!
I use the correct brush, apply a thin coat
and tip off but I can't manage a flawless finish.
Yesterday I discussed this with my dad and he suggested using a rag
instead of a brush.  Wet the rag down with mineral spirits first, squeeze out any excess and then use that to apply a thin coat of varnish.  
I'm heading into town today and will pick up more supplies and return the evil spray can!
I've never returned used paint before and feel slightly rude 
doing so but I'm thinking something is wrong 
with that spray nozzle because I can't
imagine anyone wanting to buy a product that turns out that way.

I created a room from drop cloths to help deaden the air flow and
 help keep particles off of
the surface while the finish dries.

Anyway ... I'll try out the rag application and see if that produces better
results ... wish me luck.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Refinished kitchen chairs

While waiting between coats to dry on the refinishing of the
table I've been working on the chairs and they are now completed.

A friend of mine was getting rid of these ladder backs and asked
if I wanted them.  They were certainly in need of a new
finish but they matched our kitchen table better than
what we were using at the time ... and they were free, so umm
... yeah I'll take 'em.

A before shot
I started out with just deglossing them which did wonders but then I
decided to hand sand to smooth them over.  The original finish had
worn down so much that the wood was drying out and had gotten rough.

Cleaned and baby smooth

I used Minwax PolyShades in Bombay Mahogany. 
It was only after I had started to work on the first one that I realized that
I should have used just stain instead of a stain/polyurethane mix.  There are
so many curves and corners (again!) that it made keeping the finish a constant even shade pretty much impossible.

Using a brush wasn't very productive.  The turned legs and stretchers
don't mash well with a straight lined brush, so I had to rag it on ... that's not how
you apply polyurethanes.  It took me 2 very full days to complete
all 6 chairs but I'm pretty happy with how the finish turned out on the frames. 

A little distressing on the edges to amp up the details.

I'm not sure if I like how the seats turned out but these are just temporary 
chairs anyway, so this will do for now.

So the chairs are done and just waiting for the table to come back up
and join them ... hopefully just one more coat of varnish to go.

Linking up with:

Furniture Feature Fridays

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Refinish part deux ... or is it part duh?

Well it came out looking pretty decent,
but it's not what I had in mind.
I used Minwax oil stain in Ebony.

The base turned out a dark brown:

and the top turned out black-ish.

I'm headed back to the store tomorrow to pick up a can of the
Classic Black in the PolyShade line.  
I remember thinking to myself while I was as the store picking up the supplies how I will probably be back to pick up the Classic Black ... *gasp*  maybe I'm psychic!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Refinishing the table

I've been wanting to refinish our table for a long time now
and I'm finally working on it.

It's been beat up over the years and recently received that long deep
gouge that is visible in the photo below.

It took 2 days to sand the top down and most of those 2 days I was
convinced that I was just going to paint the legs ... there was no way I wanted to
spend the time sanding or stripping them.   
Then that evil little voice in my head spoke up taunted me ... saying
 things like 'painting wood furniture is the easy way out' and crap like that!  
Can you believe it, annoying little jerk!

Of course I fell for it ... I'm an easy mark.   

I liked how clean the wood top turned out and I wanted the legs to match. 
I'm an idiot.
Look at all of those turns and crevices. 
I really am an idiot!

4 hours of scraping & wiping and the legs are only partially done ...
I have to run to get more stripper because I ran out.

I do this all the time... I convince myself that it won't be so bad
and that I will get it done quickly.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Flying meerkat, dancing baby scale & branch pendent

Yesterday my daughter had a tea party.
She doesn't like to say 'tea party' though because of the political connotation associated with that now ... so she called it a 'gathering of
girls who look pretty, drink flavors and eat tasties'.

We haven't had a party is such a long time, I was so excited to get to
set up for one again!

I lucked out and walked into Michaels shortly after they clearanced their fall
foliage fixings so I picked up some fake branches at 90% off and created
a branch pendent to hang.  

I had been collecting real branches for a while with the intention to do the same thing but I like how with the fake ones I didn't have to clean anything and how they bent to the shape that I wanted.

I plucked a few chinese lantern flowers off of it's bunch and attached them randomly ... I think after Thanksgiving I will take those off and put something wintery on the branches.

Sticking to her nature theme and not able to decorate without throwing in some whimsy ... I cut out and hung some flying animal silhouettes:

... put a hedgehog in a terrarium:

... and put some candy on a little odd scale thingy:

While I was out running around getting supplies for her party I came across this scale that I couldn't walk away from.  It was quite ugly to look at in it's dingy cheap brass coating but I knew that after a good coat of spray paint and some glaze it's uniqueness would stand out.

The party was a great success ... the girls ate scones and tarts on antique china from Bavaria & Poland that used to belong to my Nana; sat under 
flying meerkats, rhino's and chinese lantern flowers; and smiled at the little hedgehog, origami cranes & dancing-baby scale .... then they all went down in the basement and danced to German reggae music ... life is grand!

Oh, and they decided that they want to make this a 
monthly occurrence with a theme.   
For next month the theme is ugly christmas sweater of course!

I'm linking up to the following fun party:

The DIY Show Off

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Glistening Ceiling

 One thing that I will always remember
about my Nana's house when I was growing up was that she
had glittered ceilings ... and now my house has that too!

Taking photos of the glitter is fairly difficult ... you can kind
of make it out though, they are the little white dots.

There may be other brands that sell this type of effect, I 
don't know ... what I used was from Valspar.

It's a small bag of glitter that you mix into the
 paint just before you roll/brush and
once it's dry you have glistening fabulousness!

Our family room has a vaulted ceiling and it's quite a large dominant
feature so it's a great platform for this effect.  
The textured surface helps to show off the shimmer no matter where
you stand, and the light plays off it it so well due to the angle.

The best part is it's not like elementary school arts & crafts looking glitter effect,
it's more like that beautiful glistening that you see on really cold snow.  
Not overpowering ... complementary. 

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Fit for a queen ... of the Nile?

She's done and she is beautiful!
Here she is delivered to Marian's room at Luckett's:

This is what she looked like when I got her (partially torn apart so
Marian could paint the frame before I picked up):

I had to wear a mask when I was removing the stuffing, there was
so much dirt & debris floating around.

A curved wire was used as the side slat to hold
the tarp-like bag: 

Lots of rusty tack nails: 

Tired springs ... I think I heard them give a sigh of relief
once I took off the weight of the hay.
There were only 12 springs used for the whole seat: 

The center rail (the strip of wood that the bottom of the white bag is attached to along the back) was not an original piece of the frame.
It had no support and was poorly attached by
only one screw at each end. 

Long nails sticking out by the front corner ... I cut them
flush using the Dremel multi-max:

I thought this was a pretty interesting photo ... the way the rust dust left a trail
as it bounced out of the tack holes while I worked on the frame: 

Lots of very heavy innards waiting to go to the trash. 

After the bags were removed I found a coin sitting on the floor.
I did a quick search and it looks to me like a coin from Egypt ... I could be wrong about that but I think it's Egyptian.

Bare boned and beautiful: 

The frame had been a cream color when Marian got it ... she painted the blue with white & gilded highlights (so very pretty!)
Under the cream paint was a fantastic bronze paint ... I love the look and I'm SO
painting one of my next pieces of furniture an antique bronze! 

Here is the new center rail: 

Adding frame support in progress: 

Web & burlap attached and 27 new coil springs hand tied 8 ways: 

New horse/hog hair base ( I chuckle each time I see this picture,
it reminds me of a very hairy chest) :

New cotton padding: 

I constructed a baffled down feather wrap to be the padding around the cushion ...  I tell you wuuut, stuffing those feathers into there was a very messy job: 

4" foam cut to shape: 

cushion and wrap: 

Here the fabric is finally on and
I'm attaching the double welt cording:

I am very happy with how this turned out.  
In the end it's a brand new sofa on a beautiful frame 
that I imagine has a rich history.

Marian you have such a talent to see a piece of furniture for what 
it can be ... well played!


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