I'd had my eye on this dresser for a while. I spotted it at one of my favorite consignment shops, and really wanted to take it home. I tried to offer it up as a custom job so I'd have a real reason to by it, but no one took me up on it. It sat a bit longer and as soon as it hit the lowest price markdown, I knew it was meant to be mine.
Here's how it started,
It's a really pretty piece, and all this gorgeous veneer is not lost on me. However, it sat for 3 months in a consignment store, so no one loved the wood that much. It just needed a little brightening up. The curves are what I love the most, and they are enhanced with some color!
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Color washing is an easy technique that looks really hard and complicated (perfect!). The basic idea is taking a base color and building on it with slight variations to get depth and richness. Colors applied and then rubbed off tend to settle in cracks and crevices which highlights the curves and shape and age of a piece. This piece got a little wet distressing too, which you can see in the video. Once dry, I distressed a little more, but not much.
Here are the color recipes I used for this piece:
Base Coat (I only applied 1 coat of the base color with my favorite brush):
- 3 parts General Finishes Patina Green Milk Paint
- 1 part General Finishes Driftwood Milk Paint
- splash (a tablespoon or so) of General Finishes Lime Green
- Same as above but darkened with 1 tablespoon General Finishes Coastal Blue Milk Paint
- and 1 tablespoon General Finishes Emerald Green Milk Paint
- add 1-2 tablespoons of water to 1/2 cup of paint to thin it out and make it easier to wipe off (I used a dry paper towel to wipe off the second coat)
I used General Finishes Flat out Flat Top coat for this piece, just to seal it all up. I didn't want any extra shine and Flat out Flat is the way to go for a true flat finish.
A note on the topcoat, it is opaque and white in the can. Stir (DON'T SHAKE) it well before each use and apply a nice even coat.
Water based topcoats sometimes go on with a slight white/blue hue, but don't be alarmed, they will dry clear! You can see some of the white settling into the cracks. Once you go over it with your brush, just leave it alone!
Side note on this whole process... my nails were teal for a couple of days, so if you are protecting a manicure, wear gloves :)
If you'd like to see a more complete start to finish Color Washing tutorial, check it out here.
I chose white glass knobs from D. Lawless Hardware for the piece. They give a beautiful contrast while being simple enough not to distract from the piece.
And there you have it. I'd keep this one for sure if my husband liked teal... I can't wait to see who takes it home.
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