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Monday, 19 May 2014

Painted Chair - Monday 19th May 2014

Hello Friends!

Did you all have good weekend with lots of sunshine? I hope so! I got a little crafting time, a little time for trying to re-organise my craft room (again - and still not much achieved!) and some sun... the truth is that it was actually too darn hot to stay outside for long during the day...not that I'm complaining - at all!

I apologise...this is going to be a bit of a wordy post today...

We made a most exciting purchase on Saturday (well exciting for me)...we went to Tetbury to do our food shop  and as usual had a wander around and a coffee (outside the cafe, yay!!). I'm aware that most of you won't know Tetbury, but it is a lovely little Cotswold town, very popular with tourists from all over the world, for it's antiques and it's association with royalty: Prince Charles' home, Highgrove, is close by.

Now, I'm not into collecting antiques, though I do enjoy the Antiques Road show and a little bit of 'Flog it' now and then, but I do love looking in the antique shops. I have been on the look out recently for one or two bits of old but functional furniture that I can 'shabby chic' for the craft barn and when we were there a few weeks ago, we saw and old oak desk. It was £90, which was more than I wanted to pay, but it was lovely and just ripe for adding a personal touch to. However I said that it was too much and I would keep looking and walked away. Tom however was even more keen than I was (I think he quite liked it himself - either that or the though of me dragging him to reclamation yards and antique shops filled him with horror!!)  so he suggested we go and look again and guess what? It was now half the price!!! Phew, glad I didn't let my heart rule my head last time :)

It's a really lovely old desk that was from a local jewellers that closed down last year...the man in the shop said that he had really wanted to shabby chic it himself but had other projects on the go and no time. It was too big for the car, but he is passing our way next Saturday so is going to drop it off...and this time I will remember to photograph it before I start work (I should have snapped it at the shop!), which I didn't for the chair....

Yes the chair, you will have to picture it looking very dark brown and shabby I'm afraid. I can always remember it in my parent's house, which was inherited from my Grandmother, who passed away when I was three. I think it may have come with the house and they just decided to keep it. It stood in the corner of my bedroom for years, first with some stuffed animals perched on it and then books I think...when Mum moved to be nearer us, she had to downsize and just three pieces of furniture from the old house, went to the new...a  walnut cabinet that had been one of the first pieces of furniture they bought, a small but high table (one of those people used to put wash basins on in bedrooms a life-time ago, probably Gran's as well) and this chair...and guess what? They are all now in our house! They don't fit as the house is modern, but they have found homes upstairs where they don't look too out of place and the chair has always been in the craft fact Mum insisted I had it for the barn as soon as we built it and I don't like to say no!

But time has come for a change...Tom questioned me,"Did I really want to paint it?" My mind was made up, it had to be a practice piece. 

I painted it with the same chalk paint as the shelves I posted here a few weeks ago, William Morris Blue. Once I had painted it, I waxed it using my new love Annie Sloan wax (honestly her paints and waxes are gorgeous!). I applied the wax with a brush and it went on so easily, yet the very nature of the task is such hard work. Once I had waxed it, I sanded some of the areas to reveal the brown wood beneath and then on some parts I added a little gold gilding wax just to experiment. I would have painted the chair white first, but I wanted to retain a hint of its 'history' by leaving the brown of the wood to show through.

The hens were painted freehand - they are supposed to be 'Primitive' but they turned out the wrong kind of primitive, lol! I had no idea how hard it would be to draw and paint freehand on the back of a chair, but I will improve as time passes! (I hope). It started out as a memory of Penny and I decided to include Lacey as they arrived together! In fact Lacey was very interested when I was painting, she kept trying to peck my fingers, perhaps she recognised herself! Here she is below...

Sorry this has been so wordy, but thanks for sticking with me today!

Love and Hugs,
Carole X


  1. Have finally caught up on your posts! Glad you enjoyed your weekend, can't wait to see the desk you bought in Tetbury! What a bargain :-) you were obviously destined to have it!
    Looks like you had fun painting your chair, love the hand painted hens & that colour blue is gorgeous. Did a spot of painting myself this weekend, the bathroom ceiling! So not as much fun as your project :-(
    Have a good week, see you soon
    Amy x

  2. It is a wonderful post Carole, I enjoyed reading about your experience with the desk - well done, it must have been fate! I love the chair, it is a gorgeous colour and the hens look fabulous. Hugs, Anne xx

  3. You were lucky where your desk was concerned, we have a project shop here in Cupar that I love looking round, great bargains to be had, I was in last week just after they had taken in a donation of show house furniture, I managed to get oldest daughter a beautiful tub chair which she loves it was like I had got it brand new I doubt if it had ever been sat on.. But there are some gorgeous old side boards and tables in there . We just don't have the room in our very small cottage. Love your chair and I can imagine what it looked like before. Look forward to seeing your desk. Hazel xx

  4. Morning Carole,
    Lucky escape about the price on the desk. Love your chair.

  5. Oh I just love your "wordy" posts!!

    Your chair turned out wonderful! I love - love - love the color and of course your hens are the perfect final touch. I can't wait to see your new desk : )


  6. Good evening Carole,
    Brilliant news on the desk, you were obviously meant to have it.
    Love what you have done with the chair. The "hens" are a great addition!!
    I have two small chest lurking in the garage that I might just have a go at doing this to.

    Patricia xx

  7. Carole, now I know we are meant to be friends!! Your Grandmother had the same one, she gifted it to my Ma and then when I was going to Uni, I got given it. It went to Plymouth with me and then back to London where it got painted is now painted lemon and safely back in my Ma's kitchen - random!! Love it. Cx

    1. Oh for that darn 'pond' between us! X

  8. That's great news about your desk! I have a beautiful old writing desk and I absolutely love it. The chair look fantastic! I love the colour and the hens look brilliant.