Monday, March 12, 2012

Antique Secretary Makeover

My aunt wanted me to give this old secretary a new look for use in her kitchen.  I knew it was going to be a fun project because of how cute this piece is! Here it is before:

 The first thing I had to do was sand everything real well to "rough it up" a bit and to remove the decoupaged flowers on the front. It was previously painted with an oil based paint so I also had to prime it in order for my latex enamel to stick.

After the priming was done I painted it "Panda White" by Sherwin Williams using their all-surface enamel paint. Its pretty durable and can be mixed in any of their colors in an finish you want. Panda White is also one of my "go to" colors for when I want a soft white.

My aunt also sent along some samples of the paint used in her kitchen as well as some fabric from the curtains. The fabric had a really cute pattern on it and I thought it would be neat to transfer the pattern onto the sides of the secretary for a playful look. I took the piece of fabric I had and scanned it to get a digital copy of it. I made sure to scan a full repeat of the pattern. Since the fabric was not solid, I placed a black piece of construction paper behind the fabric to really make the pattern stand out when scanned. Once I had the digital copy I upped the contrast to make it black and white in photoshop. At this point I could have adjusted the scale to make the pattern or smaller or larger but I thought it was fine just the way it was. This is what I came up with:
 I then printed it out and taped it to a piece of poster board. Then I took an exacto knife and cut out all the pattern to make my stencil. This step took forever! I nixed all the tiny details and just went for the larger shapes. You can see my stencil below:

I traced the pattern onto both sides with a pencil and then filled it in with paint. The painting took awhile too because of the amount of detail and it took two coats.

Here is the after:

Here's a picture she sent me of it in her kitchen. I think it looks pretty darn cute :)

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