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Provincial - Vintage

Karolina Lolo’s Distressed Green Painted Stamped Chest

Karolina Lolo posted this lovely picture on facebook of her new furniture makeover of 2018. The piece looks so well done, it could have been an authentic piece from a old house or chateau

I don’t use candle wax in distressing:) more sand paper and spatula:) Images are from Prima stamps.” 

Karolina lives in Poznan, Poland.  Follow Karolina Lolo on Lolo’s Craft

The piece in it’s natural state

 

The finished chest

 

 

 

 

 

5 Ways To Update Vintage French Provincial Furniture

French Chair With Raw Wood

French Provincial Carved Oak Linen Dining Chair

 Vtg Link Taylor 12 Drawer French Provincial Dresser

So you bought a vintage set of French Provincial furniture, and it looks as though it hasn’t been touched for 40 years. Is it salvageable? The answer is yes, heck yes! We show you the best techniques to update this style of furniture that will make it look like several hundred dollars.

1. Strip Your Set and Go All Natural

Raw wood has always looked good, and has never looked better. Over the summer I took all the furniture in my basement and united the finishes by removing the paint. Most of all the furniture I had in this one room was all miss-matched sets, but interesting enough, they all had the exact same wood underneath. The sofas we bought came with a mahogany finish, but underneath they were pine. After removing the paint from 6 pieces, I had a fully united set. I could then introduce color with the slipcovers and the paint finish on the walls.

Inspiration- A Louis XV Limed Oak Chest- here

Instead of Using a non-toxic stripping agent to get rid of the old paint or stain is the greenest way to go. Products like Franmar’s Soy Gel Paint and Urethane Remover work well to remove all types of abrasive paint and stain , while still being gentle on the environment. This product is also 100 percent biodegradable. It works by trapping particles within itself and keeping you from being exposed to them.

Soy Gel Paint Reviews:

Garden Web“My current fave is Soy-Gel, which I got from the Real Milk Paint Co., though it can be ordered from the manufacturer and other suppliers. I added it to a recent order more out of curiosity, and without much hope. But holy smokes, it works like gang busters if left alone to do its thing. I haven’t done a big project with it yet, but I plan on stripping a pine floor. My test patches have been great! I have tried just about every chemical and mechanical method, and So far Soy-Gel is the best I’ve found.”

My Experience With Stippers:

After using many of the most popular strippers on the market and having very limited success, I decided to try out other methods, which lead me to Heat Guns.

After purchasing a Wagner Heat Gun for about $20 dollars, I was thrilled with the results. Not only did it work fast, it also saved me a great deal of money with chemical stripper. The heat gun I purchased has two settings, one high, and one low. After the heat gun starts heating up, you will notice the paint start to bubble, which you can scrape off with little effort. The best technique for removing paint is to slowly move the paint gun along the paint, for an even amount of heat in each section. Heat guns can also ruin wood if they are left on the wood too long, so you don’t want your heat gun positioned in one area for two long. The wood can turn dark, which can be impossible to sand out. While some suggest wood tools, instead of metal tools, I enjoy working with a multi purpose metal tool, such as this one from Shur-Line. Working with heat guns for stripping paint, it is imperative to buy a Respirator made for fumes. One of the draw backs of heating up the paint, is the fumes they produce, so a respirator is a must have when using this technique.

Products That Might Be Worth Trying:

– Wagner Power PaintEater – $59 Removes paint, ergonomic handle, and may be better than those attachments meant for your drill.

Electric Paint Remover Sold through Chicago $63

TruePower Electric Paint Remover-$39-

  • Removes paint, paint chips, paint oxides and mildew, and feather finishes paint edges.
  • Use on wood, masonite, concrete and steel
  • Will not abrade surfaces – Perfect for large, flat, solid surfaces

MUST Have- Safety Gear

Breathing in fumes from stripper, stain or paint can create heath problems that can effect your lungs long term. If you have a garage, workshop, or even a storage shed, working from within it will help contain any harmful dust or debris from being let out into your yard or the surrounding area. Purchase a heavy duty respirator designed for paint fumes. I am so glad to come across the MSA Safety works Paint and Pesticide Respirator because it is comfortable to wear for several hours straight, and it will save your lungs for today and long term.

2. Old World Patina – Paint Or Stain?

After centuries of trying to perfect our furniture, it comes at no surprise that many companies are selling the all natural chalk paint and milk paint products that our ancestors used. Milk and chalk paints can be a sensational source of color. If you are after an old world Provence look, consider either stripping your furniture and staining it, or painting it, and distressing it.

Take the Finish Off

I have found for my furniture, stripping the existing finishes off allows the piece to age naturally over time without seeing several layers of existing paint. I sit at a beautiful curvy French desk all day long, and one of the areas where my arm hits as I type on my keyboard shows the white paint that the desk was painted in originally. The desk is blue, and the white just sticks out like a sore thumb. If I would have put the extra work into the desk, and removed the paint, then over time, the natural ware would show the wood. Wood or existing paint? Wood is so much more attractive.

Distressing looks so much nicer with the natural raw wood. Something about having the all natural wood showing through the finish allows for a nicer aged finish than simply painting over the existing paint or varnish. Working with the raw wood really can go a long way for creating the old world distressed finishes. Stripping all the existing paint gives you a raw look, rather than working over a poly finish.

Layer Your Colors:

Layering paint can produce a sensational old world effect. Try several tones of blue, and combine it with a layer of white. Consider several layers of paint which you can then hand sand, adding the right amount of distressing. Layer on a translucent glaze, or wax to complete the look.

Work With Stain Finishes:

Consider doing a “wash” instead of a solid color. After removing your paint finish, consider mixing your paint with part water, and applying a stain. You can also buy semi transparent stains through your local hardware store. Using a beige, and then white stain would produce the aged old world looks that are so well loved.

Add Texture:

In this article we show a chest with beautiful texture on the drawers. A gray toned blue is used under a creamy white, with beautiful texture that shows off an old world paint finish. Adding texture can be easier than you think. Simply get a box of un-sanded grout. Paint your furniture using a base coat with NO grout added. Once it is dry, mix together a bit of grout with the existing paint. Next stipple on the finish with your paint brush and let it dry over night, or for two days. Once it is dry, lightly sand it, and add your top coat. Using the same technique, mix together half and half paint and un-sanded grout and paint on an even coat of paint. Using two colors like the picture shown in the article will produce the best results. For a subtle effect, consider using a creamy beige and white together. The colors don’t have to be opposites to work well. Once the dresser has dried over night, take a hand sander and start sanding the finish. The texture from the first coat will show through to the second coat. Add additional wax, or glaze to make the finish pop, or leave it as it is.

Old World Techniques -Additional Articles:

-Improve Your French Dresser Or Sideboard With Faux Marble – The French Provincial Furniture
 
-Decorating Secrets- 60 Quotes From The Best Experts In Design – The Swedish Furniture
 
-Add Dimension To Your French Furniture- French Style Authority
 
– How To Faux Crackle French Provincial Furniture- The French Provincial Furniture
 
-Designers Pick Their Favorite Gray Paints- The Swedish Furniture
 
-How To Paint French Provincial Furniture A Perfect White – The French Provincial Furniture
 
-How To Paint French Provincial Furniture Black- The French Provincial Furniture

3. Go New And Modern With Color :

Do you like vibrant colors? The lines found in the French styled furniture can powerfully pull off the sensational bright colors. There are so many bright colors that I admire but don’t have the guts to put up on the walls, so why not put it on a piece of furniture.

Do you like the brighter colors, or the patterned printed chests? You might want to just buy spray paint for those high gloss mirrored finishes.

In the past I have hand painted gloss only to find paint lines from my brushes. With brighter red, or yellow, it can take up to 7 or 8 coats of paint, so spraying your paint just makes more sense. Often times the gloss you find in spray paint can be so much more vibrant and glossy than regular gloss paint in the quart size. Oil paint can produce sensational glossy finishes. Overall, I have found for those really glossy finishes, it is worth buying the spray paint, than hand painting. The coverage is faster, and the gloss is so much more vibrant and glass like.

Glossy finishes are best achieved with spray paint, and why not buy a case of your favorite color online? For some of my last couple projects, I have been really impressed with Krylon’s Paint and Primer sprays. I started looking online when my local hardware stores spray paint failed to impress me. Never do I see the lavenders, the soft grays, or light blues. The nicer colors are online, and many companies are starting to sell by the case.

French Chests From Cote France

French Chests From Cote France

Krylon Spray Paint

Color Master Colors By Krylon. These colors above come from their website, and if you look on their website, you can toggle over the colors for the name of the paint swatch that you love. Type the specific paint name in Amazon, and you can buy it in cases of 6 with free shipping.

Additional Articles:

– Go Bold With Red- Part 1 Grand Sophisticated Interiors – The Swedish Furniture

– Go Bold With Red- Part 2 Country Interiors- The Swedish Furniture

– High Gloss Painted Furniture – The Painted Furniture Online

– Absolutely Breathtaking French Painted Furniture- French Style Authority

– How To Paint Black Furniture-A Dozen Examples Of Exceptional Black Painted Furniture- French Style Authority

– 10 Ways To Use Pink, Orange and Coral In Your Home- French Style Authority

– Decorating With Pastels For A French Styled Home- French Style Authority

4. Add Furniture Jewelry

Ormolu is the jewelry of the furniture trade. Antique and reproduction furniture ormolu can be found on ebay making it easier than ever to dress up that worn antique, or that vintage chest that is outdated.

Reproduction ormolu can be found in bronze, and there are sellers out there who also produce these beautiful appliques in stain-able wood filler. Being able to buy appliques in unlimited quantities allows you to dress up the chest of your dreams.

The high gloss looks found on bombe chests are often accented with heavy ormolu or furniture appliques.

Add Furniture Escutcheons

Dress up your chest with keyholes, or otherwise known as escutcheons. Buy a set of identical keyholes for each drawer of your chest. Keyholes can be gold leafed, or painted the same color as the chest. Consider dating your metal furniture appliques or keyholes with aging solutions. In this post ” 9 DIY Recipes For Rusty Hardware” From Hersite, you can get the look of aged hardware in your own home.

Additional Articles:

-French Furniture Restoration ~Gold Leafing Tips- French Style Authority

5. Pattern Your Furniture

Patterns can look so wonderful in a space lacking interest. There are several ways to get the look of a pattern on your chest, which range from complicated approaches to simple techniques.

One of the harder techniques would be hand painting furniture. For those who have the gifted talent of hand drawing, this may be a project that you can accomplish over a weekend. For those who don’t have the natural abilities of drawing, there are several other approaches that can give you a professional look without much try.

One of those ways is an overhead projector. An overhead projector may be your new best friend after seeing how simple it is to copy a design without much work than having a marker in your hand. With this chest, I simply photocopied a flower pattern from a cardboard box that I bought from Ikea. I had gold paint in one hand, and outlined the flower, and painted it in after I traced out the design. This zebra painted dresser was traced using an overhead projector, as well as this dresser. Overhead projectors allow you to trace a perfect, proportionate design right the first time. They also allow you to match up the existing pattern which has been already traced on to your furniture, allowing for even spacing for the next pattern. This also works quite nicely on walls. Take your favorite comic book, custom graphics from books and be able to re-produce them with ease.

5 Paint Color Choices For Provincial Furniture

Painting furniture can be an outstandingly satisfying craft. You can find an old, outdated piece and breathe new life into it with a simple color of paint. Once it’s in a new space, it can brighten and invigorate it, adding charm and drama all at the same time.

Sometimes the hardest decision of all is what color to use. When you want to go bold, here are some top color choices to consider.

Emerald Green

Emerald green is the hot color of 2013, according to the design industry. It connotes thoughts of riches and a recovering economy, and its lushness can bring a look of jewel luster into your home.

Because neutrals are still popular to decorate with, a splash of bright, bold, emerald green can be a lovely contrast against beiges and tans. Think about painting a chest or end table emerald green and adding some gold or silver accents or hardware. You’ll have a standout piece that will take charge.

Red

It seems red is a classic for painted furniture, one that can last through the years. Every room can hold a bold piece of red painted furniture, and the colors can range from candy apple to deep garnet. Like emerald green, a deep jewel tone will add drama, and a brighter red will add cheer.

Whether it’s a chair, table, or something else, a red accent piece of painted furniture will work well with almost any other color schemes, from neutral palettes to brighter colors ranging from blues to greens to yellows. Red can add freshness, drama, or whatever look you’re going for.

Blue

Colors of nature are very in right now, so painting a piece of furniture with the bold tones of blues in nature will be just the thing to do in 2013. Blue can be soothing like the sky, or invigorating like the sea. Choose from any blue shades to create a bold standout piece that will bring the natural world indoors.

Like red, blue tends to work well with most other color palettes and is a wonderful contrast to black and white.

Lavender

Whereas pink or purple may be too young to place in areas other than girl’s rooms in the home, lavender is like pink all grown-up. A single painted piece of lavender furniture will pop in a room and add that vintage drama that can bring the room to life.

Lavender is a great color to mix with other bold tones, like yellow and green, or use it against a white palette for extreme drama. Have fun with it – go bold – remember, it’s not a kid color anymore!

Yellow

Yellow is taking off on the runways now, so why not bring it in the home. A bold piece of yellow painted furniture, from chests to chairs to dining tables, will add a fresh new feel to any room.

Yellow can brighten darker areas and works great with natural woods or metallics. Don’t be afraid to go bold – lean towards the canaries, lemons, and golds rather than the softer butter and cream yellows.

Adding that piece of boldly painted furniture to your home will invigorate your home. Take a look around at what you have already; you never know, the very piece you want may already be in your home…just waiting.

Heather Legg is a writer who writes about small businesses and Spokeo removal, the art of creativity and keeping a positive perspective every day.

DE TONGE Provincial Table- Famous French Furniture Manufacture-Coco House, Palm Beach, FL

Wrought Iron Leaf Iron Chandelier In A Happy Yellow- dos gallos

Antique Yellow Painted Wicker Fiddelhead Chair – BG Galleries -Weymouth, MA

French Painted Tole Garden Table – Milord Antiques

 

Cabinet de curiosités Clément Lafaille, après 1766. Style néoclassique. Muséum d’histoire naturelle de La Rochelle. Source

Yellow Reproduction French Vaisselier- Traditional Home

Yellow Painted Provencal Armoire – Cote Jardin Antiques

Louis XV Painted Buffet – Bremermann Designs

French Commodes – Available Through Cote France

Marieclairemaison

French Painted Buffet Deux Corps-  Jean Williams Antiques

Blue Painted French Furniture- European Paint Finishes

Etienne French Painted Furniture

Cote France Tables

Green Painted French Provence Styled Furniture- Available Through Cote France

Louis XV Period Painted Console Table,  Bermingham and Co – New York

Au Rendez-Vous de Montmartre, Paris And Beyond Blog– Red Painted Desk Cote France

Red Painted French Louis XV Chest- Cote Jardin Antiques

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Jenn Baker Details How She Refinished Her Vintage French Provincial Nightstands

The minute I see a pair of nightstands, I scoop them up instantly. They are the most highly sought after furniture pieces in my selling area. So when a sweet dealer at Morgantown Market had a pair of French Provincial nightstands in her garage, you better believe I bought them!

Read more at eighthundredfurniture.com

My Journey In Painting

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I have had a lot of fun over the years doing furniture makeovers, trying new paint techniques and giving old furniture an updated look.

I love to paint because it allows me to experiment with faux techniques and it allows me to explore truly antique paint colors.  I also enjoy the challenge of turning something dated into something beautiful.

I make over furniture as a hobby, and I try to focus on classic upscale styles such as Chippendale dressers, French furniture, American styles which I usually make over with paint.

French furniture has become my choice of furniture because it has so much potential. You really cannot paint a classic chippendale dresser yellow or pink, but you can with a French dresser. The curvy lines of most French furniture pieces are just brimming potential.

There are three ways that French furniture pieces are typically redone….

1. Bright Colors and Patterns – Typically either solid colors or dramatic patterns such as the prints Jonathan Adler is famous for.

2. Faux woods and Marbles such as are found in the palace of Versailles, or Tuscan blacks.

3. Antique Swedish looks – High end white finishes.

So just how did I start painting?

I am Canadian, while my husband is American, so I wasn’t able to work full time when I first moved down to Virginia. We went through the extensive immigration process, which meant at first I couldn’t work right away after arriving in the United States.  It allowed me some time for small projects and makeovers.

But it wasn’t until the second year of our marriage when our apartment building went through a management change that things really opened up for me.  I ended up becoming manager of our apartment building. Actually, I managed two buildings, which allowed me plenty of opportunity to learn how to mix different paints, and do small DYI makeovers. It helped tremendously that the owner of the building was open to DIY changes. He was grateful for any improvement and allowed me great freedom in decorating the buildings.  I really took to painting and really took an interest in color theory. I have learned to love faux finishes and the possibilities they hold for creating period looks.

After the apartment buildings got sold, we moved on and I started painting furniture.  As we were in the process of moving, I needed to get rid of some furniture and I discovered the joy of selling things on craigslist.  I found that there were a lot of people out there interested in looking for nice quality furniture.

I decided to look for only furniture I loved myself. I focused on colonial and traditional furniture styles which were easy to find in Virginia. I learned that people really loved classic white and black finishes.  While some of my girlfriends painted colorful pieces, I learned that only certain types of furniture worked with certain colors.

Regency Barrel Chairs Cut Down And Turned Into Slipper Chairs

Regency Barrel Chairs Torn Apart and Re-Upholstered Into Slipper Chairs

As I got more into painting, our small 2 bedroom condo quickly became overcrowded with all my painted projects laying around. I felt so bad for my husband, but every business has to start off some way or another.

We constantly had wet painted furniture all over the condo, and there were times when it drove me kind of batty. I learned how to be a very neat painter, because often times I had carpet I had to keep a meticulous eye on.

My husband started blogging, which over the years turned out to be a full-time business. He left his job as an attorney, and we both moved towards making money online. Living in a 2 bedroom condo, with one bedroom holding all of our furniture, I painted furniture while he worked hard on our Internet adventure.

Today, we blog full time, and I don’t paint furniture anymore for re-sale, but still paint in my free time.  I really enjoy trying to master Swedish finishes. They intrigue me, and I am still experimenting with other finishes as well. I am still learning and growing, and I am hardly a master, but continue to learn along the way.

You can find more of my home here.

How To Avoid White Painted Furniture Yellowing Over Time With General Finishes Paint Products – Christine Adams

Christine Adams

Wood Finishing Technical Writer at General Finishes

A TUTORIAL ON WATER BASED TOP COATS YELLOWING OVER BRIGHT WHITE PAINT

Many you may have noticed that the labels on our bright white paints, Snow White Milk Paint and Chalk White Chalk Style Paint now carry a warning label regarding the yellowing of topcoats. All bright white paint will yellow slightly with time, with or without topcoat. Water-based topcoat is reactive and more likely to draw out substances in the wood such as tannins or unknown substances in existing finishes causing the topcoat to yellow. This is an industry-wide issue. Don’t carry the cost of white paint yourself– pass the cost on to the consumer who wants it with a fair upcharge. White paints, even if they did not yellow, require more coats to achieve coverage.

General Finishes background was originally on the professional side, and the incidences of yellowing topcoat over white paint were almost nil, and when our sprayable professional finish, Enduro White Poly, is used, there have been no incidences. But as the use of our paints has increased in the up-cycling and furniture refresh markets, we have heard more reports of our topcoat yellowing. Our response was to teach about prepping, testing you finish schedule and finally creating Stain Blocker, our stain blocking primer, but this is not enough. Just as we advocate prepping all finishes, we are now advocating NOT using a clear water base topcoat over BRIGHT WHITE paint.

General Finishes is in the process of developing a brushable version of our professional Enduro White Poly (available only in gallons), but that will take some time and rigorous testing before we can release the product. Here is what you should know to protect yourself and also some immediate suggestions to decrease chances of yellowing.

There is no way to reliably predict yellowing ahead of time. Sometimes yellowing occurs, sometimes it does not. Every existing finish is different and we rarely know the finishing provenance on an existing piece. Every tree is different and every piece of wood is unique. Wood can bleed tannins immediately after the topcoat dries or months later with a change in temperature that comes with a change in seasons. Oak, pine, mahogany, and Douglass Fur are particularly prone to bleed-through.

As is true of most “water-white” topcoats, our High Performance Water-Based topcoat is a clear drying finish over a non-reactive substrate such as plastic. When paint is used over something as unpredictable as wood, all bets are off. Yellowing can be caused by the top coat activating the tannins in raw wood or aniline dyes, stains or contaminants in a pre-existing finish. This is most evident when using BRIGHT WHITE paint and most prevalent in the sculpted details of furniture, where the topcoat can collect, intensifying the color change to an unacceptable level.

To add to this issue, all bright white paint will yellow slightly with time, with or without topcoat. You have probably tried to touch up white woodwork in your home after several and noticed that the new paint is brighter.

Summary:

• Whites have a lower “hide” quality and are more transparent than most other colors. Most bright whites require additional coats to achieve the desired color and minimize color variation. This can increase cost of paint finishing. Always include a clause in your contracts addressing the need for additional coats to achieve coverage.

• Bright white paints can yellow over time with or without topcoat.

• The underlying finish or wood species can affect the final color of light paint.

• Details and inside corners are difficult to cover with any paint color, but this property tends to be more noticeable with whites. This is a naturally occurring phenomenon in paint application and does not necessarily constitute a defect in the paint finish or your technique.

TIPS FOR PROTECTING YOURSELF AND PREVENTING YELLOWING

1. Use a disclaimer in your contracts or recommend a softer white such as Antique White or Linen. Upcharge for the extra coats needed and ever guarantee a white finish over a piece that you cannot trace the provenance on. Here is a suggestion: Terms of Agreement and Warranties: ________ (Initials) I have been informed that more coats are required when painting with bright whites, reds, greens or yellow. I understand that white paint can yellow over time and that water based topcoats can occasionally react with the substrate or existing finish under white paints causing yellowing, even is a stain blocking primer is used.

2. If it is a low use project, use a premium white paint that is self-sealing and does not require a topcoat. A clear top coat is not required on our Milk Paint for increased durability, as it is a self-sealing, exterior rated coating with very high durability and performance properties. However, top coats provide a smoother surface that is easier to clean and boost durability for high use projects such as table tops and kitchen cabinets.

3. Get a spray gun and use a professional “white coat” such as our Enduro White Poly. It is a white paint with “increased topcoat properties”, is a stand-alone finish when 3 coats are applied and does not require sealing with a topcoat.

4. If you are still brushing, try adding 10-15% of the paint you are using to the first or second application of topcoat. The last layer of topcoat should not have paint in it, to maintain durability. We have had good reports of this technique from customers but have not tested in the lab over a long period of time.

5. Always test your project’s entire finishing schedule (from cleaning to topcoat) on an inside door or a more hidden area of the piece. This does not help if the yellowing occurs later but you will at least know if there is an immediate problem.

6. Always apply a stain blocking primer under white or light-colored paint such GF Stain Blocker or a shellac based primer. Always let any primer dry overnight. Some of the primers we have seen suggest a 3 hour dry time and that is not enough.

7. If you are working on period pieces such as a 1940’s serpentine mahogany desk which were often finished in stain containing aniline dyes that cast a pinkish bleed through under light paint, stay away from light colors. Not every piece of furniture is suitable for up-cycling with a light paint color. Pine, Mahogany, and furniture of the 1940’s and 50’s are a red flag.

8. Last, not all manufacturer’s topcoats are compatible with other finishes and may react with a color change. Always follow best practices by not rushing, and testing to your satisfaction first.

Hope this helps and wish us luck on our next paint endeavor- Chris


Andie Pauly’s English To French Highboy Transformation

 

I changed the vernacular from English to French because someone told me I couldn’t. lol. I changed all the hardware and added escutcheons. I also filled in the shell detail with wood putty.  I used Amy Howard Cartouche as the base, then Seashell by Vintage Market, then French Blue by Amy Howard.  The next step is a dark grey drybrushing. Then I sanded and waxed, first with clear, then dark wax.

Before And After

 

Handsome Husband laughs at me because I enjoy washing the dishes but wouldn’t you? Getting ready to put dishes away after the party.
Breakfast in the gardens.
 
Entry in Summer. Everyone told me not to plant ivy. I am so glad I didn’t listen!
 
Delores…
The Dining Room

 

 

 

Aged Silver Patina Painted Vintage Bassett French Provincial Dresser

Featured from Craigslist – NY Craigslist

You are viewing a stunning mid century French provincial chest of drawers, manufactured in the 1950’s to 1960’s by Bassett Furniture. The piece was in excellent condition prior to being refurbished. It was completely stripped (not just sanded) of its “Golden Bisque” paint, and given a makeover in a beautiful aged metallic silver patina with a satin clear coat. The 4 large drawers were embellished with a dimensional stencil design. All 6 drawers have also been painted on the inside and lined in an exquisite black and reflective metallic silver fabric lining. Hardware was refinished in a gloss black.

The furniture is made of solid wood, with no particle board or plastic pieces. The original Bassett brass seal is in the top left drawer, which was their guarantee of quality back in the day. And it truly is a quality piece of furniture that was made to last for generations. It is made of choice pieces of solid wood with quality dove tail constructed drawers and strong, solid hardware. They don’t make furniture like this anymore.

 

HOW To Upholster Your Provincial Headboard

French Headboard Featured on Bob Vila

French Headboard Featured on Bob Vila

Buying a French bed is a timeless furniture choice.  Classic French beds have been around for centuries, and are still as much popular as the French style is featured and popularized in the higher end interior design magazines.

French antique beds are normally made from sturdy wooden frames and are often delicately carved which makes them both interesting and elegant.  The workmanship that goes into a carved bed takes patience and skill in order to get the precision and detail which can make them quite a bit more expensive.

Many antique French beds are made from a variety of woods, depending on their particular country and location.  Some of the most common woods found are mahogany, walnut or Black wood.

Often seen in the rococo beds, the footboards are also delicately carved, which makes them highly coveted.  A common signature to French furniture is the curvature of the legs of the furniture.  You will see the circular feet on many footboards, chairs, and chests.

There are a number of great styles when it comes to antique French beds, but if you are on a tight budget and you really want the look of a French home, why not go for the reproduction French provincial beds of the 50’s and 60’s? Many of the beds were made to mimic the antique Louis styles but on lower end scale. The 1960’s French provincial furniture is pretty easy to find, and relatively inexpensive in price.

1. Painting- One way of recreating the antique looks is to paint the frame of the bed. There are three main French styles you can paint.

A) Classic Gold is a very traditional French look. Gold works with every single upholstery as it acts like a neutral, so you are free to choose a variety of fabrics, as gold goes with everything. One very simple way of painting your piece gold is to spray it gold, letting it dry and gold leafing it for a realistic sheen of actual gold. Tips on leafing can be found here. Once the leaf has dried, you can rub on gray and with a damp cloth wipe the excess paint off which will stick in the cracks.

B) Classic cream is always a beautiful French choice. Be sure to get a creamy white with a green undertone. Once your paint has dried, add a brown glaze to add to the antique feel of aged furniture. You can buy glaze at your local home hardware store, or home depot, or Here – Wm Zinsser 04201 Blend & Glaze Decorative Painting Liquid

C) Swedish Grays are always an upscale French look. It is often a grown up style because it is not found on new furniture, but classic antiques. You can get that antique feel with gray and finish it off with a yellow wash. I have tried most of all colors with French furniture, and a cornflower yellow works the best over gray. Like the steps above, (after your gray has dried) paint on the yellow, (doing small sections) and wipe it off using a damp cloth. The muted yellow should give your piece the feel of a white wash but leaving the gray color intact.

2. Upholstery – You can create the rich looks of higher end antique French beds by simply buying the curvy headboard that was popular in the 60’s and upholster them with rich French fabrics. Classic antique French patterns were floral and landscape scenes. It is a relatively easy process to upholster a bed frame, so don’t feel overwhelmed.

You will need 4 major things to complete the task. 1. Batting 2. Fabric 3. A Stapler 4. Nail head trim.

The batting can be found at your local sewing fabric store. Ideally you want to find a flat foam padding, or cotton felt. You can always stuff inside the flat felt if it isn’t fluffy enough, but you will always have a smooth surface when it comes time to upholster. You do not need an industrial upholstery stapler, but they cost just as much as your basic stapler, (check below for links)  . A t-150 will work just fine, which can be purchased at your local hardware store for 20 dollars.   (I have been using a T-150 for years, and haven’t bought a electrical upholtery gun, but after seeing how cheap they are, I might order one!)

When it comes to finishing off your project, I would highly suggest getting nail head trim which you apply with a real nail every 3rd nail head. It gives you a nicer and cleaner appearance, and saves a lot of energy of lining up each nail so it is perfectly straight and in line with the rest. You can buy 30 feet for around the 7-15 dollar mark from Nails to You on ebay.  With that said, you can have your stunning French bed with fractions of the cost of an antique.

Hitachi N3804AB3 1 1/2-Inch 18-Gauge Narrow Crown Finish Stapler

Surebonder 9600 Pneumatic Fine Wire Staple Gun with Carrying Case

Arrow Fastener T25P Wire Staple Gun


Cotton Batting Medium Grade Roll Natural
Hillman Fasteners 122682 Upholstery Nail (Pack of 6)

Today with the convenience of ebay, you can shop around for antiques from all across the nation (and world) from the comfort of your home. Many antique dealers are now listing their inventory online which has made it easier to locate the antique you are after. With all the antiques in one location and the option of comparison shopping, it has made the prices honest, in addition to healthy competition to get the consumers business. Always go with a seller with a strong reputation of positive feedback. Be sure to get shipping quotes before committing to the bid to buy.

White Painted Vintage French Provincial Country Furniture

Painted French Provincial End Tables – Jacki Keenan

Vintage Foot board Stenciled In Red For A Fireplace Surround – David Abrams

French Provincial Dixie Vanity Desk$700 (West Roxbury)

French Country Linen Daybed – Craigslist

French Provincial Chest of 6 Drawers by National Furniture Co

A unique way to make over a vintage French Provincial Coffee Table

– Amy Staton Pruchnic

White Painted Vintage French Provincial End table – Lorri Posey Fowler

Kathy Allen Walker Vintage Sewing Basket

Vintage French Provincial Chest – Jim Bobrik

French wrought iron folding daybed$750 (Branford)

Painted French Provincial Furniture – Megan Fulbright

Painted French Provincial Furniture –

Painted French Provincial Furniture –

Painted French Provincial Furniture –

Provincial Antiques

Vintage French Provincial

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