Revisiting a poor job

I thought you might remember a rather sad hallway table that Mark had painted but when I went back through the arhcives I hadn’t even blogged it. I think that it was so ugly I didn’t want to show the world! He had painted it a completely out of charactor  pinky purple colour, I think it was the same shade ad the bedside unit I did tell you about.

Ugly furniture
A Horrid colour at the best of times!

Then he made a bad job worse by using dark wax over the top and drawer front so those parts looked a little like this other nasty piece he produced…

Dark wax over White
OMG it’s filthy!

Once he had gotten that far even he decided that he had completely ruined the piece altogether and nobody in their right mind was ever going to buy it. I’m just grateful that he did stop there as it made my job of rescuing it a little easier!

Now, because I thought I’d already blogged it, I didn’t get a photo of it in it’s ugly purple dress – sorry!

But here she is with the rescue so far…

Repainted Furniture

I gave her a solid covering in the same mid green that I used on my console table makeover with the intension of using another old map to top it off and cover the nastiness completely!

Then I painted the bits Mark had already waxed and, while the paint was still wet, wiped them with a clean dry cloth to get a distressed look.

Painting over wax

I’m not 100% sure on the finish but I haven’t ruled out filling the details and covering with a map!

Using white wax

I waxed the whole thing with a white wax I have. I don’t usually use it because I’m not always keen on the results it gives, but in this instance, I quite like the highlighted details and that you can see the brush strokes.

Green Hallway table
At least now there’s a slim chance that someone might actually buy it! I really wish I’d taken a ‘before’ shot for you guys – it belonged in the hall of badly painted furniture!

Nikki x

Ikea Moppe Hack

Apothecary drawers

I usually enjoy the challenge of bringing something old and unloved back to life but recently I worked on two pieces from Ikea. The first was this Ikea Moppe hack

Transform Ikea furniture

I used a dark wax on the carcass and various finishes on each drawer. One was painted blue over yellow and rubbed back, another painted red and distressed. I used pva glue to give a crackle glaze (as seen here) on one and 2 were covered with a vintage looking wallpaper and distressed lightly before giving a medium wax to age them.

Distressed Wallpaper on Furniture

The last drawer was painted yellow, ages with dark wax and then I used a transfer to put some swirly writing on it. Finally I added some dainty antiqued bronzed handles.

Antique brass handles
I fiddles around with the layout until it looked balanced…

Ikea Moppe Hack

I like the overall effect, what do you think?

Make Ikea look vintage

There are more than a few Ikea Moppe Hacks out there, perhaps you’ve got one you’d like to share?

As an unashamed plug, all of the handles are available in our shop (but not online yet I’m afraid!)

Next time I’ll show you what I did with an ordinary set of Rast drawers!

Nikki x

Can I Paint Veneer?

Today I am just checking in with a few snaps of something I finished this week and the answer to my question – can I paint veneer?

I bought this piece quite cheaply and in the back of my mind I was challenging myself to paint it as if it were wood. I had read that you could paint over veneer with chalk paint but I’d never tried it myself so I wasn’t sure if it was going to rub off or scrape easily.

As usual I didn’t get any before shots – the light inside was awful because there was a storm outside so I skipped the photos and went straight to painting. I gave it 2 coats of my own mix that is halfway between sage green and duckegg blue!

I dry brushed the inside with a slightly off white. 2 coats of clear wax to seal and protect and one of dark wax to add a bit of character.

The weather was still awful so the photographs aren’t that good!

Use dark wax to bring out details

I like the inside but I don’t know if it will appeal to the mass market?

Dry brushing with white
On a positive note though… I didn’t notice any difference between the veneer and the real wood! I would definitely buy plastic wood (as my daughter calls it) again with the intention of painting it!

leaded glass dorr

Updating Forgotten Furniture

Sometimes I buy a piece of furniture, fix it up and get it down to the shop within a week. Sometimes. More often I’m already working on something, have a customer commission or there just isn’t room in the shop, so the piece gets stored. Now there’s 2 types of furniture in my storage, the type that I can’t wait to get out and work on and the type that keeps getting pushed to the back.

This piece has been pushed to the back so many times it was starting to look like a permanent fixture in the shed! I really wasn’t sure how to make it ‘mine’ and, to be honest, I had no intention of working on it this week. I asked my daughter to go fetch me a long narrow coffee table from the shed as I knew just what I wanted to do with it. She came back with this…

Oak Console Table
Not very exciting is it?

So the upshot is that I decided I’d have a go at updating this piece of forgotten furniture.

It took me an age to get all of the gunky brown varnish off the drawers but with a little chemical help and a lot of elbow grease it did, eventually clean up ok.

How to strip using Nitro Mors
Please be careful when using chemical strippers

While the chemicals got to work (several times) I gave the carcass a couple of coats of a lovely dark sage green paint (one of my own). I also decoupaged some ceramic knobs (tutorial to follow).

Use tissue paper to cover plain knobs
Lydney is where our shop is!

Okay, the drawers don’t look a lot different but, up close, the dark wax is a much nicer finish. It was nice but not stunning. Then I added a vintage map to the top and distressed it slightly in all the right places and WOW! It went from being a piece I was avoiding to a piece I wanted to keep for myself!

Painted Oak Table
Lightly distressed on the legs and edges


Old map of Severn Estuary
The antique map shows the area we live in!


Details of console table
I lined the drawers with leftover map

Maybe I should go to the back of the shed again soon – who knows what other treasures I might find!

Refurbished Table Lydney
It’s in the shop already!

Come back again tomorrow to see what I found in my recycling bin!

Nikki x

Mark’s Monday Makeover – The Dirty Bureau

It’s not actually dirty but boy does it look grubby!

Dark wax over White
OMG it’s filthy!

When Mark first told me he was going to paint it white I imagined ‘Country Chic’, not ‘Found in a Barn’!

Wax over paint
Inside was left untouched

Now, I hate the look of it. It’s just not right for me. Even Mark isn’t sure on this one, he likes it okay but has his doubts about whether it will appeal to the buyers in our town. He’s considering giving it a white wax to bring it up just a little and I think it’s a good idea.

But then you put some old leather books on it…

Old Leather Books

Wow! What a difference, now it’s perfect 🙂

Vintage Books in The Forest of Dean


I’m so glad Mark and I have such different tastes and ideas, it makes our projects so much more diverse and interesting!

So, do you love it or loath it?

Nikki x

Mark’s Monday Makeover… A Bedside Cabinet

Apologies for the late post (it’s actually just after midnight here, so really it’s Tuesday!)

I don’t know if you gathered from my previous posts, but Mark and I don’t always agree on what furniture we should buy to work on. Or even how to finish a particular piece. So when he came home last week proud as punch of the bedside cabinet he bagged at the auctions I didn’t know quite how to say that I was less than enamoured with it!

The (ugly) Bedside
The (ugly) Bedside
Leg Detail
Leg Detail

He painted it quite a strong violet colour and highlighted the detail with a papery white.

Bedside Cabinet

Then he gave it a coat of clear wax and declared it ‘Beautiful’!

It looks pink here but that's just bad lighting!
It looks pink here but that’s just bad lighting!

Now, sometimes a change of colour and a little effort is all it takes to transform an ugly duckling. In this case, I’m still not swayed… it’s still kind of ugly.

A better representation of the colour!
A better representation of the colour!

Apologies also for the terrible photography – with trying to move the blog and all the associated headaches I missed daylight completely. I will try to get some better ones soon!

‘Til next time,

Nikki x