Sunday, July 31, 2011

New projects - two old chairs needing some TLC

I have recently been given two old chairs - one a "Mr Dither's" type office chair from the '50s and the other a large oak easy chair that has been stripped down to its springs.

With the recent interest in old office furniture I am keen to see how this one turns out and will be sanding and finishing all the wood parts and repairing the mechanism before re-covering it.

The other oak chair I also plan to sand down as the wood is lovely with quite a bit of carved detail on the arms and feet. I am not sure if I will lime the oak once it is sanded. I always love the finish of limed oak. I am aiming to get a comfy, casual look with this chair as it will stand in front of the window looking at the ocean.

I will post the makeover results when I have finished!

Friday, July 15, 2011

"Hello Dolly!"

Do you remember dolly vardens? 

I always remember being so envious of those girls who had one of these frilly, ruffled dressing tables in their rooms. They were the ultimate ‘little girl’ accessory. Why they were called this I don’t know, as the original Dolly Varden is a character in the Charles Dickens's novel, Barnaby Rudge.  She was portrayed as being quite flirtatious, wearing flashy attire and colorful dresses - one of which was green with pink polka dots. 

Anyway, years later I was given this out dated dresser, still complete with ruffled skirt – not green with pink polka dots but cream with pink ticking stripes. Every little girl’s dream circa 1960!

Off came the dress to reveal a plain wooden 6 drawer desk which I primed with universal undercoat, then painted with two coats of off white PVA.
I found a gorgeous wrapping paper printed with intricate architectural detailing and cut out some of the scrolls and whorls that followed the lines of the top of the dresser. These paper details were glued onto the dresser with a water based wood glue.


There were even some floral patterns that I used for the drawer handles.

Over this I painted a large craze crackle base; then the crackle once the base was dry.
I used Paynes Grey oil paint to lightly bring out the cracking and covered the whole dresser with a polyurethane varnish to protect the finish.

"Well it's so nice to see her back where she belongs!"