WARMING UP WHITE- shabby chic coffee table

The weather today is rainy and curling up in a furry blanket would be wonderful,
but as every other day there is much to do. We delivered a large dresser into town last
night and had the honour of touring a large 1912 apartment in the midst of renovations.

That is one perk I never considered when I started up cycling furniture.
I have seen the inside of some wonderful homes around Vancouver, but when you started
to venture into the heart of downtown you get to see some magical history in the buildings.
Imagine the carved details of this love seat frame built into the walls and trim of a home.

Back in the country my latest endeavor is a provincial coffee table
with another wonderful french graphic.

I don't do too many coffee tables but my mother had a hand in bringing this one to me
so I couldn't refuse. Could I?

Before you leave ...

take a quick look at some of the new hardware available in the Etsy Shop .

There are 1000's of pieces of up-cycled hardware to choose from at 
firstfinds hardware store

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GOLDEN ERA DEJA VU - night stands

Déjà vu, from French, literally "already seen"
You maybe thinking you have already seen these night stands
Even thinking it was just a few days ago
Well the truth is I found another perfect set on our thrift shop hop
and came home to work on them right away.
So yes you are seeing something very similar again but with their own magic.

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HELLO BIRDIE - hand made clock

I built this clock from scrap wood and used parts from a broken thrift store clock.

Every time I started to work on this clock I ran into another issue.
I had to let the wood acclimatize, drilling out a washer, figure out the batteries
I was using were almost dead, to deciding to re-painting over the first image I didn't like.

There are all sorts of bird images on the internet to take inspiration from and work
with so keep looking till you find the one that makes you happy. In the end I'm over
joyed with this handsome cutie that I hand painted in Emperors Silk.
Not every projects works the first, second, or even third time I try it but I'm always up for the challenge. Think about this simple little clock and the weeks of trouble I had before giving
up on a project, rethink it, walk away if need be, but make sure to try again. 
P.S. I will not be teaching you how to build a clock!
I do not have enough experience or patience for it.

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ARLENE's - white bedside cabinets


These bedside tables are going on my list of all time favorite redos.
 I've been on a mission to find bedside tables to work with, I didn't realize I had to go to Mission to
find them. Mission is a town about 40 minutes away from us and we just don't get over there enough.

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THE POWER OF PAINT - pink striped dresser

This dresser use to be in a man's garage,
storing tools and other greasy manly things.
This makeover reminders us of how powerful
paint and color can be.

Check out the Before and After below

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RICH ESPRESSO FINISH - black and white paris dresser

Richer than black, warmer than ebony, it's ESPRESSO!
and I'm not talking about coffee ladies.
I painted the top of this Paris rue dresser with one coat of ASCP Graphite over a medium colored
wood finish. Graphite is a dark charcoal color but is too flat on it's own.
Once the paint dried I applied a liberal layer or 2 of ASCP dark wax.
Above you can see the upper edge has dark wax on it and the lower edges is just raw graphite paint.
I took a dozen photos to show you this and it's still iffy whether you can see the difference perfectly.
The dark wax takes a long time to dry if you want it to be rich and heavy. I let it dry for several days,
 buffing occasionally then adding a coat of clear wax to give it a nice shine.

These handles are done the same way as the Etsy hardware.

I added some well placed graphics to the drawers.
*Well placed* is an interesting term considering I tried several different ideas,
in several different locations, sanding away the mistakes in between attempts.

These graphics were drawn and filled in with black paint pens. 

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HOW TO BUILD A CONSOLE TABLE - using an ammo box


I'm re-sharing this post with more building details for
others who want to re purpose their own ammo boxes.

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HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN STENCILS - sheet music dresser

I want to show you how
make custom stencils,
the size I need, the shape
I want and inexpensively.

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Okay this post can't wait any longer.
It is long over due as I finished this table, Parlour Table that is, days ago.
However I have lost the before picture.
I know there was one taken I have seen it, but do you think I can find it ... NO!
So with your imagination think hard about a simple yet dark oak wobbly table.
Have you got the image in your mind?
Well it won't work if you keep looking at the nice ornate white one I am showing you.
Close your eyes and think hard.
I painted it in old, distressed the edges, and waxed it with Minwax.

But before doing all the pretty stuff I had to make the table strong and stable again.
I tightened every joint possible with clamps and glue but it still shifted to and fro,
and it needed a little character added.

That's where the fancy bits come in.
The scrolled wood work you see at the back
stabilized the shifting and took a ho hum piece of furniture and made it attractive.
My scrolled wood work was purchased while on a road trip into the US,
and it was a second hand find and I still have 2 more of them to play with.
Maybe one day I will get a scroll saw and try my hand at creating these lovely designs.

As you can see I didn't stop there,
I also cut up some more of those plastic wall decorations to add some ornate details
at the front edges of both shelves.
She has now found a new home.
Stop in to see what's new in shabby chic white hardware available at firstfinds.
There are over 1000 pieces of used hardware to choose from

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PAINT BLEEDING with ANNIE SLOAN CHALK PAINT- white mid-century cabinet

Have you had trouble with
your paint bleeding and looking
for a solution to fix it?

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PRINCESS DOGWOOD BEDSIDE- single nightstand cabinet

I had to share this DIY furniture project
that I painted in Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.
I still can't believe I found these enormous
vintage flower pulls and the ornate back plate
hardware that they go so well with.
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HOW TO WET DISTRESS - distressing annie sloan chalk paint

Have you heard about wet distressing but
are a little confused about what it is or how
it is done? Well you don't have to use sand
paper anymore to give your furniture project
distressed and worn look. When you use
Annie Sloan Chalk Paint you can simply use
a damp kitchen sponge.
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FURNITURE APPLIQUES - trumeau mirror

I finally made over my very own Trumeau mirror.
It has been stashed in my work room moving from place to place for years.


Trumeau mirrors are French wall mirrors originally manufactured in the 18th century.
The French word trumeau describes the space between windows.
Trumeau mirrors were originally intended to hang on a wall between windows,
providing a decorative element and to bring more light to the room.
The mirror is almost always rectangular and sometimes includes a decorative portion at the top,
with the mirror below it. A genuine antique trumeau can cost between US$2000 and US$20,000.
My trumeau is probably from the 1950's and was fairly flat with the perfect area to add a great applique.

What I needed was the right motivation and that came when I found the right applique.

The applique I used on my mirror is a reproduction that I bought from a storage unit sale.

Here is my Trumeau mirror in all her glory and I'm in love!

Another idea for appliques is these plastic decorative pieces that you find at thrift store.

With a jigsaw and some caution you can cut them apart into fancy applique pieces.
 Please be careful!!

When you are cutting plastic with an electric reciprocating blade,
the plastic melts from the friction and can fuse back together as you pass through it.

If you are not comfortable with a jigsaw try checking out small hacksaws or rodsaws
at your local hardware store. Both these options are manual hand tools.

While you are there pick up some new blades for your knife,
cause you need to trim the rough edges. This kind of plastic can not be cut with a knife.
Only use it to shave the rough edges!

Some rough sandpaper (80 grit) can also help to smooth the edges.

These are light enough to glue to a project but small nails could be used with pre-drilled holes.
DO NOT try to drive a nail through the plastic without drilling first. They will break!

Here is how 2 of these pieces were used.
Here are some unique hardware pieces available at


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