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A hub for all things to do with design, furniture painting, photography, style, event planning [and some foodie bits for good measure].  

PAINT TECHNIQUES: LAYERING COLORS AND WATER TO CREATE DEPTH

I love exploring different ways to layer and manipulate paint on furniture. I have this thing about combining greens and blues and figuring out ways to bring this color combination to life. I bought this piece, a vintage mahogany dresser, from a neighbor who had meant for it to be her own project, but a move to California meant I got to take this on as my own. Other than the fan detail at the center of it and a bit of fluting along the two sides, this dresser is fairly simple in style. I knew it would need a more creative finish to really allow it to shine.

I started off by painting the entire piece in Annie Sloan’s Amsterdam Green. I like to start with the darkest color as my base and then add lighter shades on top. This isn’t essential, but I just find it works best when I’m trying to achieve this layered effect. To create a sense of depth to the flat surfaces, I mixed up varying shades of teal, combining Annie Sloan’s Napoleonic Blue with Amsterdam Green and adding Pure White to create lighter shades. I quickly painted one of the shades of teal haphazardly all over the piece and immediately went over it again in a lighter shade of teal, making sure not to fully combine the two colors.

After letting it dry for just a few minutes [no more than 10], I started to spray the dresser with water with one hand and brushing over the piece with the other hand. Sometimes I’d let the drips stay, mostly on the drawer fronts, but I tried to avoid any sort of uniformity to how I did this. When it looks too forced, I feel like the paint finish loses that unique patina. Sometimes I won’t like how a certain area looks, and I’ll just paint right over it and start again. It’s a process and takes extra time to dry with the addition of water, but I just cant get enough of the end result!

I’ve been working on capturing this layered effect in photos, but it’s challenging to showcase just how stunning the finish really is. That being said, the photos I did take must have done the trick because this dresser sold only after a few days of being listed, and even more exciting, it’s my first Etsy sale! [did I mention I’ve started selling my pieces on Etsy so I can ship nationwide now?!]

I’m really enjoying getting more creative with my painting process, and I’m desperate to get my hands on another dresser to use this technique on! Which one will be next?! If you have a piece that needs painting or are on the hunt for something specific, contact me and I’ll help create something beautiful for you!

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