back in the studio…

by | Sep 24, 2014 | Artistic Endeavors, Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint | 37 comments

It was so nice to be back in my studio today after being away for several days.  I just love having the creative space to work…it’s rejuvenating and fun and seems so full of possibility.  I’m still a little fuzzy-headed from my cold, but I was able to get some good things done today.  The light was really soft and pretty today when I arrived, so I carried some new products across the parking lot to the old white and gray building to snap some pictures.

Miss Mustard Seed-0687

The soft colors, chippy paint and old texture are just perfect for me!  I was shooting pictures of our new topcoat, Tough Coat…

tough coat | miss mustard seed

 tough coat | miss mustard seed

…and of our new sample size bags.  I photographed them with the quart size, so you can see the difference.  It’s so cute and small.  The Tough Coat is available for our retailers to order and the sample sized bags will be available in a couple of weeks.  I’ll be sharing more about the Tough Coat in upcoming posts.

sample size milk paint | miss mustard seed

I mostly took pictures on a loading dock, in front of a sliding barn-style door and on a door threshold at the side of the building.  It really is the perfect backdrop.

product shoots | miss mustard seed

I was informed today, though, that they are painting it.  Ah, no!!  I had a brief thought of Frog-taping myself to the building, but that would be a little extreme and inappropriate.  I was happy to hear that they are painting it white and I think you’ll still be able to see the amazing old texture.  As they’re cleaning up the building, though, to get it ready to paint, they found some signs and an old crate and gave them to me.

economy sign | miss mustard seed

I let them know I’ll take any old wood, doors, hardware, whatever off their hands if they’re just getting rid of it, anyway.  It seems to be an arrangement that’s working well for both of us.

Kriste and I worked on pricing and putting away the milk paint stock I got in.  I forgot to take a picture of it, but we filled each drawer of the shirt counter with one color of milk paint.  I have 18 drawers, so it’s perfect.  If you’re local to Biglerville, PA and have been waiting, I do have milk paint in stock now and you can purchase it directly from me.  My studio is not a regular shop, though, so it is only open by chance or appointment.  Just send me an e-mail if you want to stop in.  We’ll have an official open house at some point…

I also worked on white washing the tables Jeff built for the workshops.  (I’m still debating on painting the chairs…)

white washed studio table | miss mustard seed

I really like the white washed wood, but I wanted to give them a bit more dimension, so I’m waxing them with a mix of White Wax and Antiquing Wax that makes a soft gray wax.

mix white wax and antiquing wax to make a gray wax | miss mustard seed

When brushed on, it brings out the grain and adds depth to the color.  It also provides the finish to protect the wood and make it resistant to water.

mix white wax and antiquing wax to make a gray wax | miss mustard seed

I mixed about two parts White Wax to one part Antiquing Wax to get this pale color.

mix white wax and antiquing wax to make a gray wax | miss mustard seed

I am loving taking pictures against the washed wood.  It looks almost limed or faded with age.

milk paint mixers wrapped as presents | miss mustard seed

As Kriste and I were putting all of the product away, we couldn’t figure out a cute way to display the milk paint mixers, so we decided to wrap them up like little presents.

brown paper packages & baker's twine | miss mustard seed

The rest of the accessory products we put out on shelves and in ironstone bowls and sugar jars.

wax in an ironstone bowl | miss mustard seed


counter display | miss mustard seed

counter display | miss mustard seed


I’m hoping to get the rolling walls/backdrops finished next week and my office area set up and functional.  And I need to put the pedal to the metal with getting ready for The Chapel Market…


  1. Phyllis

    I would leave the chairs alone. It is going to be too much white and no contrast.

  2. marian

    Oh, I was thinking of painting them a color. Not white… 🙂

    • Michelle

      Think the chairs would look great with a pop of color! BTW, love your new place. How exciting!!

  3. kristin

    As a side note (and after reading the first comment) I agree that the different shades of the original wood tones on the chairs is perfect as is. I really wanted to say…. I just can’t believe how perfect this all is, it still amazes me. ENJOY!

    • kristin

      Yet, if you did a bunch of different colors it would be a great way to showcase your colors! I am so glad I don’t have to decide!

  4. Catherine

    I definitely think you should paint the chairs. With the shirt counter, hutch, and floors being natural wood, I think painted chairs would be great. Would you paint them all one color? All different colors of MMSMP? I’m feeling something blue!

  5. Debbie Klausing

    Just love everything that you have accomplished in such a short time! I vote to paint each chair a different color, which would be so helpful to your customers. Eye candy for sure! I would definitely have a hard time choosing, because there are too many of your colors that call my name! Simply amazing how your mustard seed has grown-I have been checking daily for years!

  6. sandi m

    A thought – Painting each chair one of your colors would be a fantastic way to showcase the colors on real furniture, not just on your leg samples. Further, you could section each chair by using the different waxes, hemp oil ,etc. This would be a wonderful learning project for Kriste, too! They would look great around the neutral tables.

  7. Maureen

    It’s your workshop and a showcase for your milk paint line so I say paint them in the colors of your milk paint. Go for it! The chairs would have two benefitis…as seating (duh!) and as a showcase for your paint line….plus a pop of color would go a long way in your beautiful space. After all, you are Miss Mustard See and painting is your “thang!”

  8. KellieC

    Can’t wait for an open house and a a workshop to sign up for. Purchased some great ladder back chairs yesterday to go with a spool table I’ve painted. Pulled out Mustard Seed Yellow and need some more to finish the project. Love the Hemp Oil I used on a couple of projects last week and looking forward to the Tough Coat….may use that for my kitchen cabinets….???? Paint the chairs Lucketts Green and Shutter Gray. (Just my opinion…:)

  9. Michelle

    I can’t wait for your open house and to take a workshop or two.
    I love how you pulled everything together and how you can tell it’s your shop.
    Oh and that scale I love it! I have been watching one at a resale shop in my area but because of its size I can’t find a place for it in my home. It is beautiful.
    Can’t wait to see what you decide to do with the chairs. Painted or natural, either way will look good.

  10. SusanM

    I have lots of questions about the Tough Coat sealer: Where/when can I buy some? (I am not a retailer.) is it matte finish? Will it safely cover old lead paint? Is it appropriate to use on very old wood that has lots of chippy paint? What’s the best way to apply it? Your product comes at a perfect time for me because I just bought a 150-year-old door covered in lovely white chippy paint, and I want to get it done before the holidays! Thanks, Marian.

  11. Lisa

    it’s looking so beautiful!!!

  12. Julie @ Creating This Life

    Just fabulous, Marion! You have such an amazing eye. Those photo shots at the old building are just amazing.

  13. MaryLisa Noyes

    great arrangement, indeed! love to visit your area one day…

  14. wendy @ zoey's

    oh definitely paint the chairs … one for each of your paint colors. Then when you have a class…you could do a giveaway to one of the students based on the color chair they were sitting in….you know, pick a paint color from the hat and the person sitting in that color chair gets the prize 😉

  15. Barb

    I would definitely paint the chairs and in different colors perhaps leaving the seat the natural wood. I love this space, it’s come together so perfectly for you! Too bad about painting the dock, what a little gift of a MMS back drop for you!

  16. Grace

    YUM! Your space gets more gorgeous by the day! Your products look amazing. Free old signs and crates??? Wow

  17. Megan W.

    Your killing me with these pictures… like I want to just die with the photo above with the scale, and the wrapped packages and the brushes… die…..I mean like sleep and live and eat and work and play in this new space.!!!! I would love to have a space like that in little ol Cleveland…..on a bucket list of things I just don’t think I will ever live to see come true.

    Enjoy the blessings that have been put in your path and thanks for taking us along……..even though I want to jump thru my computer screen and would have a hard time explaining that to my family when they walk in….ha haha

  18. Jelena

    Your studio is looking better and better all the time!

  19. Shelly

    I vote for leaving the chairs as they are. They appear to have a good patina and the break from all the other painted things that you will be having or adding would be nice. I think painting them all different colors would make it look like a day care center. You can always paint flat boards with your colors and finishes for the visuals for classes. I know you are all about paint, but I also know you like antiques and original finishes as well. This is only my opinion as an antique collector and dealer. 🙂

    Whatever you do will be wonderful!

  20. Christina

    Do not! I repeat, do not paint the chairs. I love them just the way they are. 🙂

  21. JeanFB

    Everything is looking so gorgeous! And as this has sort of become a forum for the chair debate…. I’ll put in my two cents and say that I would love to see them either stay unpainted, or have them all painted one of your blues – particularly Artissimo Blue. I say this because when I think of you I automatically think of blue and white, as your signature palette, and I think that upon walking into your shop/space, it would really scream “you” if you had blue chairs next to your white table. Especially if you plan on using that blue and white fabric in the space somehow. But seriously, I know anything you decide to do will be perfect!

  22. Jessica @ Dear Emmeline

    Normally I’d say leave the chairs as-is but since there is so much wood already in the counter and hutch breaking it up with some painted chairs might be nice!

    everything is looking awesome by the way!!

  23. Liz Thomas

    Please don’t paint the chairs! You will see your visitors and workshop attendees so much easier when they sit in chairs that don’t clash with their clothing. Everything is looking great!!

  24. Kerry Purcell


    A few months ago you talked about your disappoint in your home not selling. Today you talk about the joy you find in having a workshop to call your own. I am so very happy for you . . . when God closes one door, He opens another. Thanks for sharing your journey with us.

  25. kathy

    You were terrific on the morning show! I learn something every time I watch you! When we built our lake house, I had vintage Fiesta Ware in several different colors for my dishes. I had paint mixed to match every color. 20 years later, I still have the same dishes and still get complements on my chairs. Paint them some of your favorite colors from your milk paint line. They are all lovely!

  26. Mary Borgsmiller

    I love the idea of a chair in each of your colors and sectioned with different finishes! What a tool for your workshops!

    What did you use to whitewash your tables? Can you use your milk paint? I have a really large room of wood paneling that I am dying to paint but hubs says no. I like the whitewash idea and also your wax looks liquidy, how did it turn out like that if you just mixed the waxes? Did you add something else? I know I NEED a workshop but I live in Missouri! HELP!
    Mary B

  27. Loretta

    Love the chairs just as they are! I’m not anti paint, I just really like the contrast.

  28. Debra

    I’d love to see the chairs in different colors of your milk paint. I too am interested in how you whitewashed the table. I color washed my vanity with water and graphite colored paint. Didn’t like it, so sanded it off and mixed with glaze instead. It was easier to work with and the grain of the wood does show thru like I wanted (it was nice wood, but a golden oak color that looked very 90s, maybe 80s). But if there is an easier way, I have another vanity upstairs in the same color I haven’t tackled yet. . .

    We have a store here that painted large squares of colors they carry, then divided the squares and put different waxes on to show how each affected the color. It is extremely helpful when there are many colors to choose from, as well as finishes so I think it would be helpful to your customers and pretty!

  29. Suzanne O'Mullan

    It seems as though you have plenty of opinions on the chairs! My opinion is truly n/a – when you decide – it will be phenomenal whether you paint them or not – paint them one color or all – I think you are so talented whatever you do – my eyes will be blown away!!!! I do want to schedule an appointment to come there and make a purchase of milk paint and waxes. I would love to couple it with a workshop if you are maybe thinking of doing one … the drive is just under three hours one way… very doable … The tables are gorgeous!

  30. Kathy Fredrickson

    I would paint them in trophy….

  31. Cheri

    I can’t help it. I cringe at the thought of you painting those chairs. They are so beautiful! It all looks so perfect to me.

  32. Alicia T

    Hi Marian,

    The chairs – I’d leave them as is….however, it you were to paint them, what about painting each one a different color? Whatever you decide will be perfect.

    You are keeping us in pleasant suspense for the next blog and for the unveiling of the “wall on wheels.”

  33. Suzy

    I can’t wait to see your new workshop !!! Do you have a date for an Open house yet ? I am local and want to do a workshop with you so bad. 🙂

  34. Tina-Marie Hamilton

    I am waiting – sorry impatiently – for the tough coat sealer. I have some chippy furniture that REALLY needs it! I know, I know, it will be here soon. I am just hoping that I can find someone close by who carries it. Excited!

  35. Gwen

    Paint the chairs in different colors, but leave the headrails in their natural wood color. I’ve seen this done and it really looks nice. It unifies the chairs but still brings in the milk paint colors that you want to display.


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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