So, I’ve been busy here at No. 49 giving our TV unit a new lease of life and I’m so pleased with how it’s turned out!
Our old TV unit was the perfect size for our apartment but since moving to No. 49, and having more room, it looked really small and lost in the space and more like dolls furniture! I was on the hunt for a more substantial corner unit and I did have my eye on the gorgeous Padstow range of painted furniture by M&S but at £379 for this cabinet, it was way out of our price range.
We had already spent a lot of our budget for the living room on new wallpaper, sofas and a fireplace and needed to reign in the spending on other items. As a purse-friendly alternative, we started looking on Ebay and in charity shops for cheaper, pre-loved options.
We bought this TV unit for £20 from a local charity shop. As soon as I saw it, I knew it was just what we were looking for. (We also snapped up an incredible butchers block for £25 but more about that another time!) We were after a corner unit and I loved the carved detail either side, the brass handle and the bun feet. I did not like the orange pine though!
Soft woods like pine make ideal upcycling projects so it was nothing a little paint couldn’t sort out. I’d been on an Annie Sloan painting workshop (a birthday present from Adam, didn’t he do well!) which was a great introduction to using chalk paint and the variety of techniques and finishes you can achieve. It was both an enjoyable and informative experience as I got to paint a stool, a mirror and a chair under the guidance of an expert which gave me the confidence to try out a larger project of my own.
Visit the Annie Sloan website for information on workshops in your area.
I chose the shade ‘Original’ which is a warm, slightly creamy, soft white. A bit of a cop-out colour for me I know but with Farrow & Ball’s ‘Stone Blue’ on three walls in the living room (the real star of the show) I didn’t want anything competing with such a saturated colour.
Favouring a “less is more” approach, I lightly distressed the edges using sandpaper. I’ve found that when distressing paint, the key to achieving a natural look is to remove the paint in areas where natural wear and tear would occur i.e raised areas, corners, edges and areas around handles or knobs. I have seen pieces of painted furniture which have been sanded and distressed to within an inch of its life and I think this look can be quite forced and artificial looking.
I used two coats of clear wax to give protection and durability and a little dark wax to define the carved details.
So there you go! Have you ever used chalk paint to upcycle a piece of furniture? I’d love to hear your thoughts!