Friday, May 25, 2012

How to Shabby Chic your dark furniture

Turning this standard kind of new bedroom 
furniture with a dark mahogany finish
into a shabby chic set is what this post is about today~
I start with Old White Chalk Paint®.
Well actually, I scuffed it up first with a sanding block
 as this finish was super shiny. 
Then I wiped it down and started painting. 
I always paint around the hardware first if I am going to
 paint the hardware~if you are removing the hardware 
to keep the original finish you will find it easier~
but in this case I will be wiping away some of the paint from 
the hardware when I am I used a small 
brush to get in the nooks and crannies first.
Then I use a nice flat brush to cover the rest
 of the drawers and nightstand/bureaus.
Then I go back with a second coat and hit inside the 
nooks and crannies again. I use a small foam roller for
 my second coat and then finish with a 
quick top coat using the flat brush again.
 Here is the chest with one coat~it looks like amateur hour,
 but remember,  thin coats are better than  thick coats all day long...
Here is the second coat~nice and perfect looking. 
Beautiful Old White! But not shabby chic enough~
so lets get to the distressing~I like a light distress personally.
(See my new alarm system on the wall!!! 
I feel much better having this system in place~!)
 Here is the distressed finish~I take a damp cloth and rub 
off the areas I want removed. This is the beauty of using 
Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan™! 
You can take as much or as little off as you like.
EDIT NOTE: many asked if I wipe off the paint while still damp. In
this case I did it after it was just dried. You can do it while it is still moist,
just take care to not remove too much as it is easier to remove while
moist than dry. Either way it beats sandpaper in my book.
 Then I rub off the hardware until I am happy with the look~
 And now it is ready for its 
coating of soft clear wax. I will do one coat
 on the entire piece with two coats on the top, 
and a light sanding in between~
I am still working on the bigger pieces.
 Here is the daddy chest....that's gonna be a lot of painting!!
 Now it is done with its two coats and I am working on the mommy chest~
all of these pieces will not even use up one can of paint!
So if  you are hesitating because of the cost, remember that 
Chalk Paint® goes a lot further than latex does!!
 Colin is one of our painters at Maison Decor,
and might be even better at it than his mother!
So that is the latest from Maison Decor! 
Hope these tips help you with your projects.



  1. Hi Amy,
    Whew girl, you sure got some big painting projects in front of you.
    Love your technique and the finished product.
    You are so fortunate to have Colin helping you. He's a cutie and a sweetie.


  2. The furniture pieces look great Amy! I love that little accent table with the graphic!

  3. Complimenti per il tuoi lavori!!
    Il risultato è bellissimo!!
    Ti auguro buon lavoro!!
    Baci dall'Italia!!

  4. I am thinking store ownership suits you Amy!
    Have a wonderful weekend

  5. Beautiful transformations, Amy! I love that table with the wreath transfer. Boy, you've got a lot of stoppers. They look so pretty on the mirror, too.

  6. Great post Amy, I love the new candy in the window.

  7. Another amazing makeover, cannot believe its the same chest!! You are one amazing lady!!!!! Love it and the stoppers are beautiful too. That small table with the stencil is so pretty so French and so Maison Decor! Love it all....thanks for sharing, have a great weekend Amy!

  8. Love the results! You have a lot of work ahead of you! Good thing you have a willing helper there! I wish I could see the shop with my own eyes! it looks so wonderful!!
    Blessings, Lorraine

  9. Amy. I love that chandy. You are a great painter:):) Smiles, Susie

  10. The furniture turned out beautifully!

  11. Great tutorial on the painting process. It was fun to see the way you do it. Love your new curtain panel in your shop. I love wispy, flowy, types of curtains these days.

  12. I love the chest you painted. Really enjoyed seeing your technique. I think you should price that chandelier really high--it is so pretty in the window!

  13. Amy - THANK YOU so much for sharing some painting tips with us! I learned so much today! Dumb question here: Do you rub off the distressed areas while the paint is still wet - or do wait til it's dry? You truly have the technique down, my friend. That end table is just beautiful! And the chandy....and the stoppers....and the drapes....oh my. LUV!

    Oh, I have a question for you. Are you selling those paint lids to people like us who can't make it to your store? How much are they? I desperately need a bunch of them!

    Have a fabulous weekend, sweetie! Hope you sell a ton of merchandise!!!

    xoxo laurie

  14. You are a painting machine. I am tired just watching what you are doing. Beautiful work as always.

  15. Praying that Andee's surgery goes well. Great post, Amy. The chandie is gorgeous, as is everything else.

  16. Finally getting caught up and blog hopping tonight! How wonderful your shop looks Amy and with all of your fabulous talent you should do very well. Looking great:-))

  17. This was the perfect post for me! I'm planning to paint my dark finish oak
    end tables and I want only a teeny bit of distressing. Good to know about being able to just wipe off the paint :-)

    And thanks for reminding all of us about Memorial Day. Many of my family was military and now both our sons are.

  18. Thanks so much for this post. I bought some AS paint about a year ago to paint an old chest of drawers. However, I have been procrastinating big time. Your post gave me the inspiration and courage to get started. Your son looks like a real sweetie and so handsome. I also have 2 boys (actually, young men now), and they are the light of my life. I wish you the best of luck in your new career. Oh, that reminds me, you wipe the paint off when it's wet right, but do you let it dry in between coats? That may sound stupid, but just checking. I have never painted furniture before.

  19. That bedroom furniture looks like my first real set. My tastes have changed so much since I was young. You sure did a gorgeous job of making them look shabby chic. Sure wish I could afford that Annie Sloan chalk paint.
    Better hold onto that gorgeous son of yours. What a cutie.
    My absolute favorite is the little oak table with the laurel wreath on it. I have a real thing about tables. Good thing I don't live close so I could buy things from you. I'd be in constant trouble. Love your blog and all your goodies.

  20. I would never paint around the handles still on the piece. That would never ever work with latex. But it looks like it comes out looking perfectly smooth with the chalk paint. I hate that kind of furniture but it's going to look nice painted white... I think I like light distressing too on my white furniture but then I always admire pieces with heavy distressing...I'm bound and determined to do it heavy one day.

  21. You can rub off with a damp cloth for a distress technique when the paint is either dry or still moist. Don't do it while its wet as you have less control and lots of paint will come off. I like to do it when it has just dried. This paint goes a long way, I did my entire kitchen with one the expense is justified! Give it a try!

  22. Love the makeover on the nightstand and the distressing on the hardware! It's so helpful to see your painting and distressing process.

  23. Oh have inspired me move forward with the painting project of our very first bedroom set....the furniture came out so beautiful and I love how you painted the gorgeous! are the best!...Have a wonderful weekend with your family! And a prayer for Andee, your blog friend...

  24. Amy,
    I just learned something new about chalk paint.I did not know you could wipe it down and not sand it.Bravo I need to try this technique.Your projects turned out lovely.Have a great weekend.

  25. AMAZING POST:) Your blog is so wonderful and I follow..I hope you will follow me back:)

    If you want some décor inspiration from Sweden, check out my blog:)
    Have an awesome week.

    LOVE Maria at

  26. Great post! I loved your step by step with photos. Thanks for sharing!

  27. I had things in my shop both physical and online that I sometimes hoped they would not sell! But you get over it when they do! That is so pretty.

    Love your painting tips!

    The shop is looking amazing and Colin looks adorable in his apron. It's so nice to have kids who help out.

    Have a great weekend,


  28. I can't believe you did your kitchen with one quart! I've never used Annie Sloan but think I might need to on an upcoming project. Thanks again for sharing!

  29. Its looking great AMY
    so fun to see the before and after pics
    great job

  30. Forgot to say...I love all those stoppers! I think a collection of them is just fabulous.

  31. Great post Amy! That chalk paint really does work miracles doesn't it. One of these days I am going to have to try it. Your shop is looking wonderful! Hope you have a great weekend! ~Stacy~

  32. I love the little table with the graphic. Your distressing is just how I like it - not too chippy! That paint is beautiful - so is your shop!

  33. Loved the furniture and the how tow

  34. So, so pretty, Amy!
    You make it all look so easy.
    Enjoy your time off.

  35. Love it your projects and for taking the time to explain each step. May I asked how you wax a piece? I am more afraid I'll mess this up and the piece will look horrible. Would you mind explaining how you wax a piece. I want to do my MIL's bedroom suit from 1939. I don't want to mess it up. Thanks for any tips you may be willing to provide.
    Love your blog and your homes you have worked so hard on in the past.
    Connie, IN

  36. Great tips on the painting, I didn't know about the wipe off before waxing. Gonna have to try that out.

  37. Everything looks beautiful! I love the new drapes! I have the table runner to match! Hmmmmm new drapes????

  38. I'm fairly new to blogging, & as I have a big project for this Autumn which is to paint some old French armoires which I have aquired here in France. So to read your post giving so many tips of how to use chalk paint is a god send.Thank you for sharing. All I need to do now is convince my other half how much more up to date they will look after I've painted them.!!!

  39. Love what you did and am going to do it over the next week or so to a large dining room table we've been wanting to distress. Also, the gold-framed picture over the daddy chest is exactly like one I had that was left behind in a move (by mistake). Would you know where I could get another copy?


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