Sunday, 2 June 2013

Chest of Drawers Painted Ombre Turquoise and White

Chest of drawers before any love...
You might have seen this old chest of drawers on my future projects page. This really was a piece that needed a bit of love. When I picked up this baby I found the paint discoloured (varying shades of off-white and yellow) and flaking off. I've tried to show in a close up photograph the condition of this piece before. It's also a bit of a cautionary tale- as tempting as it is to just whip out a can of spray paint and take to your piece of furniture, I don't recommend it! The problem is that without a good primer, the paint simple won't stick (hence the flaking) and the colour of the wood will seep through, causing discolouration. So although the piece might look great for a little while, the effect won't last the distance.

Close up of the condition of the drawers.
Why it's not a great idea to just use spraypaint
Anyway, back to what I did with this piece. After sanding it back I applied two coats of primer. I use British Paints 'Prep 4 in 1' water based primer. I remember when I started painting furniture I spent a lot of time trying to work out if I should use a water based or oil based primer. It can be really confusing when you are reading so many different blogs on 'how to'. In the end I went with the water based and I've stuck with it. I also found it really hard to find names of recommended products that are available in Australia which is why I always try to name the products I use.
I then painted the whole of the outside with a glossy white paint that I've used for all of my 'white projects' so far, British Paints H2O Enamel. This one does not require a top coat and is very smooth. It's quite sticky to paint with so you really need to ensure that the surface is completely clear of dust (and hair!) Another reason to buy a quality brush- the cheap ones tend to drop bristles that you then have to try and fish out without making marks.

All sanded back, labelled and ready to paint
Now for the drawers- I had removed the knobs and filled the holes with wood filler before two coats of primer and then had the fun of creating my graduating ombre colours. Here's a quick tip that I wish I had learned the first time I did a chest of drawers- especially a vintage piece. As you pull out each drawer, label it so that you know which runner to put it back on once it's painted. For some reason they are NEVER uniform. This is especially important if you are doing an ombre piece like this one because the effect will look stupid if it's not graduated, won't it?!
The base colour that I used for drawer 5 is Dulux Green Buoy, the same shade I used on my shabby chic table. I then took out four mixing trays. For each of the drawers I used a tablespoon of Green Buoy plus one tablespoon of H20 Enamel for drawer 4, two tablespoons for drawer 3, three tablespoons for drawer 2 and four tablespoons for drawer 1. Again, two coats for each drawer, screw in your hardware (that's the fancy word for knobs) and she's done!

Are you ready for the after? I love the result of this piece and (yay!) it's for sale... look for the link on my sales page.

The finished chest of drawers. Just the right amount of retro cool!


What other colour combinations do you think would work really well for an ombre chest of drawers?

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