The weather has been amazing over the weekend! Just a couple of sunny days in the 40′s and 50′s and I’m ready to throw open the windows and go out for a hike. There’s still a lot of snow on the ground, though, so I had to settle for a walk instead of a hike. It’s given me the shot of energy I need to finish home and work projects. I was moving furniture around and cleaning out closets. That’s what warmer temperatures and sunshine does for me, so I’m ready for Spring. Bring it.
So, here’s where we left the bed yesterday. It’s fully painted, but the paint looks pretty bright and a little flat…definitely not like it was painted a couple hundred years ago like the inspiration bed.
It’s the distressing and antiquing that’s going to bring this piece to life. For distressing, I didn’t want to take off most of the paint or have it super chippy, so I, number one – used the bonding agent, and number two – only sanded the edges lightly with a fine sanding sponge. I also ran the sanding sponge lightly over the entire surface just to knock the “newness” off of the paint and reveal any imperfections in the wood. It’s a subtle technique, but effective. I then added the Antiquing Wax directly to the painted finish. Since I wanted the paint to absorb the pigment in the wax, I didn’t apply a layer of Furniture Wax between the two. You can see how it changes the color…
…and settles into the texture of the crackled and aged polyurethane finish underneath (that’s why I didn’t want to sand.) Can you see that wonderful texture?
I make sure to work it into the recesses and crevices of the bed frame to simulate the “grunge” that sits in corners of antique pieces. Those are the areas that are usually untouched when pieces are dusted.
I only apply the wax to a small section at a time and then wipe it away with a soft, cotton cloth. (This is why I wear gloves! The wax isn’t harmful if it touches your skin, but the pigment can get under your fingernails and make a mess of your hands.)
As I wipe the wax away, it stays in the “low points” of the finish, showing off the amazing texture and adding depth to the color.
It also shows off the dings, dents and imperfections,which I love when I’m trying to get an authentic looking aged finish. If your piece doesn’t have that, you can hit it with a hammer in a few random spots.
I’ve only done the headboard at this point, so I can make a video of the process on the footboard. You can see what a difference the Antique Wax makes below…
I can’t wait to get it all finished and in the room…hopefully next week.
While I’m putting a new bed in the guest room, I’m refreshing it a bit, too. It’s not a total overhaul, but I’ve moved the furniture around a bit, bought a chandelier to hang over the bed and am looking for a few other strategic pieces.
More on the guest room and the rest of the shuffled furniture soon…