I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter holiday and spring break! Mine was super busy, but also very nice.
I have been working on a cute little end table for a client. It is now complete and I must show you the result and process. It turned out better than expected. There isn’t anything extraordinary about the design, but the combination of the beautiful aqua color and the copper hardware make for a perfect combination.
The before picture is a classic design, simple lines, very beautiful. I love furniture like this. The castors don’t match and the hardware is very tarnished, but you can see the beauty in the design. As you can see in the picture, I used Poppies Paint Powder for this piece along with one of my favorite Sherwin Williams paint colors, Watery. It’s a near perfect aqua.
First, I had to address the top. My super nice client, Debbie, found this end table on the side of the road and it had a few issues that needed to be taken care of. The drawers needed to be reglued and there were some cracks from water that also needed glue, but the top was the worst and it had to be stripped.
So, I stripped the top using the Citristrip and a plastic bag method. I put the Citristrip on with a foam brush (this is not a good idea, use a chip brush instead) because that is all I had on hand. I go through chip brushes like crazy! I applied it per the directions (liberally) and then went to my hutch and got a plastic garbage bag, cut it down the seam along the side and bottom and placed it on the Citristrip. I made sure to get as many bubbles out as possible to ensure that the stripper could work its magic. I then left it over night, about 20 hrs.
In the morning, I used a metal scraper to remove the stripper and the laminate just came off like I was spreading butter! I love this method of stripping furniture. A plastic scraper is the better choice, but until I finish organizing my workshop and find mine, I, very carefully, used the metal one. I washed it with a scotch scrubby and odorless mineral spirits, then wiped it down with a warm rag. And ta da! No more laminate.
Then it was time to sand. I used my electric detail sander. First with 80 grit sandpaper and then followed up with 120 grit. Because this entire end table is laminate, I was very careful not to go too deep. I did not want an uneven surface because I sanded too deep. I only scratched up the glossy surface so that my paint would adhere well. I forgot the pictures of this part of the process. 😦
I removed the back of the end table because it just looks nicer to paint the entire inside of the back and then reattach. Much cleaner paint lines. With Poppies there isn’t any need for primer, but I did two coats of Zinsser Bin 1-2-3 anyway, simply because it was laminate.
Then it was time for color! I mixed my Poppies as directed and added it to my SW paint. Two minutes later I was painting. I painted two coats on the table, drawer front and inside back cover. You can see in the above picture that the back has been removed. I allowed it to dry overnight.
In the morning, I painted the inside of the drawer white. It needed a little contrast. My client requested just a little distressing, which means….do it like Pottery Barn. I used a 100 grit piece of sandpaper and distressed all the edges and corners. I was careful not to scratch the flat surfaces, just the high points including the edges of the drawer front.
After all the sanding, I needed to get rid of the dust. Handy dandy tack cloth to the rescue! I wiped it all down with my tack cloth then went to work on the top coat. I used General Finishes High Performance Top Coat in a Satin Finish. In between each coat (I did three), I lightly sanded with a fine 800-1000 grit sandpaper.
While I waited for the top coat to dry, it was time to clean the hardware. Normally, I would change the hardware out, but my client didn’t want that just yet. She wasn’t sure what direction she wanted to go. I just couldn’t put her hardware back on tarnished so I got to work cleaning it up. I notice that it looked like copper so I went online and looked up how to clean copper. I found three methods.
- Set your copper piece in the sink, pour salt over the top, then pour white wine vinegar, then more salt and it will do the work for you. Scratch that one, no white wine vinegar.
- Make a paste with baking soda and lemon juice. Rub with cloth or Scotch scrub sponge. Tried it, didn’t work.
- Make a paste with salt and lemon juice. Rub with 0000 (extra fine) steel wool. Ding, ding, ding…a winner!!
Man did #3 work! It took a lot of elbow grease because there was so much tarnish, but oh my gosh, it was beautiful!! By this time, I am getting so excited to be done because I cannot wait to see the copper hardware on the aqua! Two more coats of top coat and done.
When I put the hardware on, it was stunning, gorgeous….perfect. I told my client that I was more excited for her to see the hardware than the entire piece. She was thrilled when she saw it. She loved the color and loved the copper. She said she wasn’t going to change it because it was just too pretty. Yay!!
I will be looking every where for copper hardware. I know gold is supposed to be coming back in, but boy oh boy, I love the copper so much more.
Don’t you think that aqua and copper are a perfect combination?