This lovely cedar chest that my grandfather built was just sitting in the basement and not getting used. It has some scratches and dents and was in need of some TLC. It’s a special piece so it took me a long time to decide what I wanted to do with it. Did I want to sand the whole thing down and re-stain it? Or did I want to paint it and if so what colour? Did I want to add a decal or a stencil? I wanted to use it in my spare room at the end of the bed for linen storage so last weekend I decided it was time to give it a makeover. First I added some feet to it to bring it up off the floor. I found some simple wooden bun feet at The Finishing Store (similar to this one below) I had a vision of a beautiful white chest with a soft gray stencil on the top so decided on Annie Sloan Pure White and Paris Gray chalk paint. But I soon ran into trouble and after the second coat of Pure White I noticed some yellow stains coming through and some water spots. This sometimes happens when a piece has been polished with oil-based polishes or deep red pieces that have a mahogany stain. So I hopped in the car and headed to Home Depot where I picked up some Zinnsser Bin 2 primer and stain blocker. I used one coat of this primer and it worked great. (it does however, have a very strong odor)
I found that the Annie Sloan Pure White chalk paint didn’t cover as well as any of the darker colours and it took quite a few coats (I was also using a roller). But it did cover eventually and I did a coat of Annie Sloan Paris Gray on the top part and stenciled over with the white using a Martha Stewart stencil which I purchased at Michaels. It was my first time working with a patterned stencil so I wasn’t sure what to expect. It had a few spots that were not perfect and I could live with that but overall I didn’t like the white. One of the reasons why I love chalk paint so much is that if you don’t like how a piece turns out you can just paint over it. So I repainted the whole thing with Annie Sloan Graphite and used Annie Sloan Paris Gray as a stencil colour. I finished it with a coat of dark wax first as I wanted a bit more depth to the look since I wasn’t going to distress it and then two coats of clear wax. Added some new hardware and viola…I love how it turned out! I had some fun with different accessories and styling and a here is a closer look at the stencil. It was easy to do once I got the hang of it. I think I am going to try to stencil some pillows next!
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