Friday, June 25, 2010

6 simple steps to transform a sofa table

I designed my dining room as an homage to my love of the Southwest. I love the bright colors of cactus blooms, sun drenched peppers, and glazed pottery that pop when paired with the muted tones of the desert, adobes, clay pots, etc. We used to live in and visit Arizona and New Mexico, however, I live in the Northwest now so I wanted to be reminded of the Southwest but not punched in the face with it by using too much themed decor. I choose elements that when put in the Southwest would be authentic, but here in the Northwest might be subtle. I tried to create the effect of Mexican carved doors by hanging "shutters" flanking the windows (World Market $20 total) and painted the details with turquoise and burnt orange. I was lucky enough to find an actual agave plant here in the NW, so I potted it along with a few other succulents and cactus in glazed pots. Finally, I painted the tray ceiling a muted gold. It was a nice way highlight the feature and define the space in my open floor plan.

 I picked up this table for $35 while antiquing a few weekends ago (same trip I found my breakfast table). Looking at it now in all its shabby chicness glory, would you believe that this is going to be a feature piece for my Southwest dining room?
Sorry, I don't have step by step photos, but I would be in big trouble if I had used our nice camera with my paint covered hands. So, a detailed description will have to do.

1)  I lightly sanded the whole table. 
2)  I painted the table muted gold using a foam roller and foam brush for the detailed areas.
3)  While it was drying, I pulled out my acrylics and started blending a dark brown to match the wood of my dining table, and the turquoise/burnt orange found on my "shutters".
4)  I painted the entire trim detail the dark brown, then I highlighted the details with the turquoise and burnt orange. 

The table looked brand new but it had to look aged to fit into the design and seem authentic. 

5)  I dabbed a little of my dark brown paint into the muted gold, just enough to make the gold slightly darker than its original hue. I then dry brushed the darker gold all over the table, highlighting the existing cracks and corners.
6)  After I was happy with the finish, I gave the whole table a good slathering of satin polyurethane.

Here is the finished product...

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