Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Evolution of a hutch, it takes work to make it 'old'

I'm always interested in how others carry out their vision, and thought maybe others are wondering 'what's takin' her so long?'

So I thought I would outline the process I use so you can see why this takes me so long.
The following are various stages of the evolution of a piece I paint.

When I started this I used to paint the WHOLE PIECE the under/distress color.  At least 2 coats.
Sand for smoothness.
Then I would paint the WHOLE PIECE in the upper/primary color.  At least 2 more coats.
Sand for smoothness.
Then distress the areas I want to distress, generally you can tell where these things would naturally get worn.

I have now changed my method a little.

Here are the cabinet doors on the hutch:

I removed them, took off as much hardware as I could get off [this piece has those screws that don't always turn before they're stripped].   I sand them to get the finish off and then add one coat of the primary color, but sloppily, leaving lots of gaps where I will distress them:

Then I add the 'under color', the color I want to make appear as if it's a much older, underlayer of paint

Basically I go over everywhere I didn't paint with the primary color.
Then I sand again, for a smooth surface to get off any paint glops.

Then I start adding on more primary color:

I do it super sloppy though, heavy towards the middle where there would be less distressing, and lighter on the edges and around knobs/pulls/corners where distressing would naturally occur.

How I apply the paint in this step I call 'stippling'... I have no idea what the real term would be.  I dip just the very end of my brush bristles, and then tap, tap, tap where I want most of the pain, then I go back and drag the dry brush over these tap spots to spread them more completely.

I might go back and re'stipple where the paint is too thin after dragging it... for example down the center of the frame of these doors.

Next I will sand and then reapply the primary color until I am happy with the coverage, then I will go back with the sander and sand where I want to distress.  If those areas end up not having enough 'distress/under' color [in this case the red], I will drybrush back over a bit to pop the color more.

Here are some more pics of how she looks today:

In this pic you can see that I painted the edge of that trim in the red.  
The back that is now wood is getting covered in my Waverly Toile wallpaper:
With the edge of the trim of the hutch in red, I think it will nicely frame the toile.

Today I also worked on several other items I have to get done for Friday to put in my booth at the Charity horse show:

This doll crib was blue but rusted and not in great shape.  It's now antique white and will get a thick mattress and doggie bedding.

This table is also a dog-bed-to-be.

The mattress will fit down inside the apron of the table and of course dog theme bedding will complete it.  If it does not sell at the booth this weekend, I think I'll play a bit with the legs in a faux MacKenzie-Childs motif.

So I am frantic about being prepared for the booth, and excited to have my first real 'shop'.  It would be great to sell lots and lots of items, particularly since every piece generates a donation of 10% of the price paid.  I think I might also offer an added incentive to buy at the show of 15% donation.
I'm also hopeful I might get some interest in some custom items.
We shall see right?
At the very least my work will get exposure and hopefully I will get some much needed feedback.

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