I rag rolled and sponged my way around our house and when our bungalow became a house I kept a piece of wall as a souvenir of those early sponging days, my first attempt was the baby's nursery, the one I was in labour with all those years ago.
Now I'm going full circle and going back to doing what I love, starting with a furniture painting workshop, just for fun and to dip my painted toes into the water again.
So off I took myself to a 3 hour Furniture Painting Workshop locally, leaving the 3 year old with daddy who took the morning off then took her to nursery at 12, leaving me free to not rush back madly as I usually do.
Emma Burt from Love House Interiors offers a range of workshops in her Southwick (near Brighton) studio to create artistically finished shabby chic furniture and signs using chalk based paints. I had seen these types of paints around but never had the chance to use them. She uses the Autentico brand which is a no-prep paint that can be used straight onto most surfaces including varnished without the need to sand first, music to my ears as I had imagined a cloud of dust and a lot of elbow grease!
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We were asked to bring along a small piece of furniture to work on. I took this sorry looking piece of furniture that was part of a nest of tables, long forgotten in my garage. I had wanted to take one of my pine bedside tables that I will paint to co-ordinate with my bedroom, but wanted a test piece to practice on first.
The table was quite dark but the paint covered really well even on the first coat, this coat was dried with a hairdryer, then a second coat applied and dried again. Emma then showed us some nifty finishing techniques using sanding blocks, sandpaper, waxes and varnish to achieve the shabby feel.
So a little sanding was required but really minimally just to smooth the surface and make it clean and also to add those shabby distressed look touches. I didn't go too crazy with mine, just outlining the edges and corners and a few other light touches, I will be more bold with my next piece!
We then applied the wax to infuse moisture into the paint and wood, this brought up the colour amazingly well too.
At this point you would finish off with a protective layer of varnish although I didn't have time so bought some paint, wax and varnish to finish off the piece and get going on my next masterpiece!
I came away from a very relaxed and enjoyable workshop with an old, forgotten piece of furniture which now has a new lease of life and now fits into my decor. Upcycling at its best!
Love House Workshops, bespoke furniture and interiors can be found here.