Monday, December 8, 2014

Girly Girl Dresser Reveal

I am trying out a new paint today for the reveal of my girly girl dresser for my daughter's room. Robin over at Mother Earth Paints gave me an opportunity to try out her paints, and I was really impressed with the results. Check out the transformation of this Bassett dresser.

pink white painted girly dresser

I will be following up this post with a full review of Mother Earth Paints later this week for anyone interested in hearing what I think about them. In the meantime, feel free to check them out for yourself.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Another Goodwill Makeover...Drexel Heritage Shelf

Goodwill is one of my favorite spots to find furniture rescues. Their furniture is usually pretty reasonably priced, and they even help you load it in your car. I try to hit up Goodwill every other week even if I am not looking for something specific. Frequent trips give you the best chance of finding that diamond in the rough.

I found this shelf while my daughter and I were waiting on our van to get its scheduled maintenance at our local Toyota dealer. I paid $15 for it, and from what I researched my best guess is that this is a Drexel-Heritage piece from the 1950s or 1960s which is around the time Drexel purchased Heritage, since it only has a Heritage stamp.  The company changed its name to Drexel-Heritage in 1968. I haven't been able to pinpoint its exact value, but I know it is well over $15.

two color distressed finish

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Duck Egg Blue Love

It's my favorite kind of day here at Pretty Distressed- a reveal day. I recently got to refinish this roll top desk and was totally grateful that my client let me come shoot it in her home.

duck egg blue

I have been wanting to refinish a desk for a long time, and I literally jumped for joy when she selected Duck Egg Blue (Annie Sloan Chalk Paint®) as her color. I have done accent pieces in this color all over my house, but have never been brave enough to paint an entire piece with it. I used Old White on the back of the desk to provide a little contrast and didn't wax it so it has a nice chalky look. The hardware was also painted with Old White and finished with Annie Sloan Clear Wax.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Preparing a Gender Neutral Nursery

For those of you that might have missed my recent post, we are expecting our third child next April. Like we did with our daughter, we decided to keep the gender of the baby a surprise until his/her arrival. 

There is something very magical about being in the hospital with the anticipation of not knowing if you are about to meet your daughter or son. A little bonus is that it drives our family crazy. Is it wrong that we love to hear them complain and moan about having to wait? Maybe we are a little power hungry or something. 

Like I said, we did the same thing with our daughter, but I have learned a lot this time around. I waited until after she was born to put together her nursery. Since I had a boy already, I knew I wanted to do a totally girly and pink room if I had a girl, so I didn't do one thing to the nursery except get a white crib and changing table. I figured I would have time to put it all together once baby came. I must have been totally delusional. 

It took me about six months to get her nursery together, and in the meantime, I sat in utter chaos and a very starch, uninviting room to feed her three times a night. It just added to an already draining and difficult season. One thing I am sure of this time around is that I want a completed, cozy and soothing room when I bring our little baby home, so I can enjoy those late night feedings and snuggles without obsessing about needing to complete the nursery. And since I have one boy and one girl, I am a lot more open to having a gender neutral nursery.

I am going to bring you along for the ride as I plan and design my gender neutral nursery. Here is the first of many inspiration boards. I already have a baby blue upholstered and oh so comfy  chair and ottoman, so I am working on incorporating that into my color scheme. I could always make a slipcover for it, but my initial research proved that is going to be a time consuming project that I am not sure I want to commit to just yet. So here is my first thought...

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Why Buy New When You Can Make Craigslist Furniture Look this Good

A while back I shared an Antique Kitchen Table makeover with you that was painted with Chalk Paint® decorative paint by Annie Sloan in the color Coco. This table was so beautiful, I was really bummed that I didn't get to do a proper photo shoot with it and the chairs I refinished to complete the set. Recently, my client was gracious enough to send some pictures of this beauty in her home, and I am super excited to share them with you.

Just as a refresher, here is what the table and chairs looked like before I started. The table was a true antique and the chairs where more modern and originally from Pier1. They were completely different colors and styles both found on Craigslist. By painting them the same color, we were able to achieve a cohesive set which is great news for you other flea market and Craigslist hunters.


Monday, September 29, 2014

Applying Annie Sloan® Soft Wax with a Lint Free Cloth

I have been busy working on some client pieces this past week and was inspired to share another video tutorial with you. People always ask me if you need to get a wax brush to wax your furniture, and the answer is "no." In fact, I think most newbies out there will find it a little easier to apply wax for the first time with a lint free cloth versus a wax brush.


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

22 Inspiring Bathroom Vanities

Are any of you out there fans of Hometalk? If you haven't checked it out yet, it is your go to source for all things home including design, decor, outdoor living, organization and more. It is a lot like Pinterest for home and garden. You can save ideas and projects you like to clipboards, ask questions and even find professionals in your area.

Over the summer I had a big response to my Oak Bathroom Vanity Makeover post, so my friends at Hometalk asked if I could curate a clipboard of some of my favorite bathroom vanities on their site.


There are some amazing vanities out there. I put together a mix of traditional vanities, DIY and refinished ones. There is a little something for everyone. It is really inspiring me to finally getting around to making over the kids bathroom. Adding that to my long list of "to do's."

Monday, September 15, 2014

A Golden Experience at Goldfish Swim School in St. Charles

Over the summer, I was contacted by the owner of Goldfish Swim School in St. Charles, Alex Tyler. He offered a six week trial of lessons for both of my kids in return for my honest review of our experience. This place really lives up to its slogan. Our experience was truly golden. 

Courtesy of Goldfish Swim School
Goldfish offers a variety of classes from a 4:1 student/teacher ratio to one on one classes. At the introductory level, you are looking at $80 per month for one class a week per child. You can learn more about cost specifics by checking out their swim lesson fee page. While that might seem like a large investment compared to your local park district program, I can tell you first hand it is worth it. 

My son learned more in one class than he did an entire 8 class/2 week program at our local pool. I was really impressed that he was learning and accomplishing a new skill each week. He went from being a kid who wouldn't even stick his face in the water at week one to doing a "superman" glide underwater for about 5 feet by himself by week six. He also loved their ribbon system where kids can earn different ribbons each week for completing a new skill. It is a real cause for celebration.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Painting Fabric with Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint by Annie Sloan

annie sloan paint fabric
By now, most of you know about my obsession with Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint by Annie Sloan. You can paint almost anything with this wonder paint, and the best part there is no sanding or stripping involved. For my latest project, I was lucky enough to partner with the folks over at Annie Sloan Unfolded to makeover an amazing antique settee with my favorite paint.

This beauty came my way when Angel from Angel Michelle Photography contacted me to breathe some new life into this piece as she was wanting to use it as a photo prop. The shape and detail of this piece was gorgeous, but the current upholstery choice- not so much. Upholstery work and fabric costs can skyrocket pretty quickly, so I decided to give painting this bad boy a try. I had read about this technique in Annie Sloan's book Color Recipes for Painted Furniture and More. I am pretty impressed with the results.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Big Announcement

And now you know why my August hasn't been very productive. Pretty Distressed is adding another bundle of joy to the craziness that is my life. Our family is very blessed and excited!

Good news is I was able to complete one project in August and have an amazing reveal for you on Monday. I have finally completed my project with my friends over at Annie Sloan Unfolded. You are not going to believe what I was able to do with this antique settee. Check back Monday for the big reveal!

Monday, September 1, 2014

A New Look for Pretty Distressed

Pretty Distressed has come a long way since its inception in January of this year. It started as a little outlet for this burnt out stay-at-home mom and has blossomed into so much more. Since it is now a legitimate blog and business, I decided to get rid of my DIY logo and turned to Bre at Triple B Creative to give Pretty Distressed the look of professionalism it deserves.

Introducing the new Pretty Distressed...

Triple B also did some awesome business cards for me. I can't wait to hand them out! No more post it notes with my blog and email.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Modern Chairs to Aged Beauties

This week I finished up a set of chairs to go with my recent antique kitchen table I completed for a client. Another great thing about painting furniture is that you don't have to have a complete matching dining or kitchen set. These chairs are originally from Pier 1 Imports and had a black finish with red distressing coming through. I painted them with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® in Coco to match the table.


Monday, August 11, 2014

Revisted: Top Five Furniture Picking Tips

I am super busy right now finishing up some pieces for clients, but unfortunately don't have any reveals to share right now. I always get a lot of questions about how I find my non-client pieces, so I wanted to revisit my Top Five Tips for Furniture Picking that I put together back in January. I hope they inspire you to find some pieces of your own to paint.


Let's turn some trash into treasure! So, I recently shared with you my new obsession for Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® along with all the cool things I have been refinishing. Well, I have run out of furniture to paint around my house, so I have been out on the hunt for used items around town. Furniture picking for newbies can be intimating, so I have come up with some tips I have learned from my recent hunting trips.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Antique Kitchen Table

One of my favorite things about working with clients are the amazing pieces that come my way that I wouldn't get to paint on my own. Recently, I completed this gorgeous antique table for a client. She is a woman after my own heart, a Craigslist bargain hunter. She practically stole this table from its previous owner. And while the finish was beautiful and in decent shape, it did not fit in with her crisp, clean decor.


Monday, July 28, 2014

Birthday Tradition - Frozen Applique Shirt

My little princess turned two this weekend, so not much crafting or painting was going on. We threw a small family party at our home and covered it head to toe in all things Frozen. I am sure all you mothers out there can relate. My daughter is obsessed! 

Today, I thought I would share with you a quick little project I did for the party. Ever since I got my first sewing machine a couple of years ago, I have a tradition of making an appliqué birthday shirt for my kids. 
frozen birthday shirt

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Starting Small is Smart and Just as Fun

When you think about getting into painting furniture it is probably because you need a big change. You think your bedroom set would be perfect if you could lightened it up with some white paint. Or maybe you think, grandma's dining set you inherited because no one else would take it could really look great with a few coats of paint as well. While I agree with you whole heartedly, projects like these are a huge undertaking.

I have preached on here that starting small is always best. Get your feet wet and see if you like painting before you commit to painting a whole bedroom set or the like. I even tackle small pieces now and then to practice new techniques.

A client of mine gave me this little jewelry box to refinish for her daughter's room. It was the perfect opportunity for me to practice the modern finish I just learned from my class at Carter's Cottage. The best part of working with a piece this small is that if you mess up, it is super easy to just start all over again.


Monday, July 21, 2014

Chalk Paint® Quick Tip - Painting a Decorative Leg

I have had a very busy weekend. After a long break from painting, I now have three client pieces sitting in my workshop, aka my garage. So, I will have lots of reveals coming down the pike soon, and it feels so good to be painting again!

One of these pieces is an antique table with some great detailed carving on the apron and legs that I am painting in Coco. I was inspired to pick up the camera and show all of you how I paint a piece with beautiful detail like this when I am using Chalk Paint®. This stuff is so amazing with detail, but there is a little trick for making the it really stand out.


If you are new to painting, I have some more in depth tutorial videos for working with Chalk Paint decorative paint by Annie Sloan. I am hoping to do some more of these "quick tips" as I get inspired. If there is anything you would like me to cover, leave a comment below or shoot me a note. Happy Painting!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

It's Not Too Late to Update that Outdoor Space and DIY Nautical Pillow

It might seem like summer just started, but the stores are already reducing their outdoor furniture and accessories to make way for those school supplies. If you are thinking of making any upgrades to your patio or deck, now is the time you could really get some sweet savings, and you still have plenty of time to get good use out of them.

In honor of the stores trying to push fall upon us, I thought this would be the perfect time to share my little deck upgrade with you. I am a huge fan of navy, but it totally doesn't fit in with the color scheme of my house. So, when I was looking for a rug and umbrella to spruce up the backyard, I thought it would be the perfect place to showcase some navy and nautical, two of my favs. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Get Your Chalk Paint® on at Carter's Cottage

It has been almost a month since I have painted. I am starting to lose my mind a little, but it was a much needed break. I am ready to jump into my new projects with a fresh perspective. 

In preparation for getting back into the swing of things, I was able to attend a painting class offered at my local stockist of Chalk Paint® decorative paint by Annie Sloan, Carter's Cottage. I have been using Chalk Paint since last November and have finished dozens of pieces for myself and clients, so I didn't really know what I was going to learn at the class. Let me tell you, it was definitely worth my time. 


Monday, July 7, 2014

Revisiting My DIY Bathroom Update

I was fortunate enough to have my bathroom vanity makeover featured on Hometalk yesterday. In response, I received a lot of questions about the other items featured in the bathroom that I never shared with you, so I wanted to provide you with all the details today.



If you want to learn about the vanity project including the paint color and hardware visit my first bathroom post.

Originally, my plan was to hire an electrician to hang two separate lights over each sink and get two mirrors as well because I couldn't find one large fixture that I liked. Then our furnace went out in the middle of February and blew those plans out the window. So, I went on the hunt for a single light fixture again and landed on the Argenta 5 Light Vanity Light by Z-Lite. While this was a big investment, I saved money in the long run by not having to hire an electrician to split the wiring into two separate fixtures, not to mention, patching up the wall. My husband was able to install this himself without the help of a professional.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

A Look Back at My First Piece

It is hard to believe at this time last year I was living in a completely different house in another state. This past year has brought a lot of change including, a new home, a new school for my son, a new church, new friends, renewed relationships, and everything else that goes along with uprooting your family. Even though it has been tough at times, I thank God for this opportunity and the ways He has blessed our family that I couldn't have even dreamed up including this little blog, Pretty Distressed.

Last November, I decided to buy my first can of Chalk Paint® decorative paint by Annie Sloan, and my life has never been the same. I started creating all over my home and sharing it with others as I found my passion for writing again. Then, I ventured out to selling pieces and even taking on clients. I can't thank you all enough for bringing this dream to life. I am so encouraged and inspired by your comments and messages I receive daily. 

Last week, I was contacted by Annie Sloan Unfolded, the sole distributor for Chalk Paint® in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. They like my work so much, they are offering me an opportunity to do a product review post right here on Pretty Distressed. It was honestly one of the most exciting emails I have ever gotten. I have been brainstorming like crazy and hope to be giving you more details as my project and post take shape.

Today, I wanted to share with you the first piece I ever refinished. It isn't anything special, but I dressed her all up to show you that dreams can start small. 




Monday, June 30, 2014

Guest Post: Creating Your Own Stencil

I am back from vacation, but I have a bonus guest post for you today. I had so many submissions I couldn't narrow them down. This post comes to you from interior designer, Rachel Rossi. Rachel blogs about home design and décor on her site, www.Rachelrossi.co/blog. Today she is sharing her stenciled side table project with us and showing you how to  create your own stencil, too. Take it away, Rachel.


Stenciled Side Table
It started with a yard sale, as most good things do. I found this tiny, adorable, and foldable table! I saw a ton of potential the moment I laid eyes on it, I had to laugh when I first saw it, it seemed so small, I wasn’t sure how it could be useful. But, once I looked over it again, I noticed that it the top folded down, making it a perfect piece for small spaces! I wanted to put a modern spin on it with some fresh colors and the shape was just begging for a stencil, so that’s exactly what I did!



Thursday, June 26, 2014

Guest Post: Getting a Manly, Modern Finish with Chalk Paint®

Hi guys! I'm Bre and I blog over at brepurposed, where I find those hidden furniture gems that most people would toss and turn them into something new and exciting! My journey started last year after I got married and needed a new creative outlet. I hope you'll join me on my furniture adventures and follow along as I stalk Craigslist, thrift stores and friend's basements for whatever I can get my hands on. :)
Pallet Board Topped Dresser

Monday, June 23, 2014

Guest Post: Five Space Saving Ideas for a Small Home

Hi, Pretty Distressed readers! My name is Krissy, and I blog over at Hot Commodity. I talk about reading, decorating, sewing, and home improvement. I am so excited that Christina invited me to share this post with you today. So without further ado, here are my 5 Space-Saving Ideas For a Small Home!


My husband and I have lived in a small home (1400 sq. ft.) for the last seven years. Over the years, our family has grown, but our house has not, so we have had to come up with some ways to use the space we have as best as we can. So here are five of my favorite space-saving things we have done in our home:

Thursday, June 19, 2014

In Summer

Hi, all! I have been working hard all summer and decided it is time to relax and spend some time with the people I love most in this world- my amazing fam. So, Pretty Distressed will be taking a brief hiatus to soak up some summer sun and fun.

But not to worry, I am bringing in some amazing talented guest bloggers next week to take over for me. I hope you enjoy their posts and check out their blogs. Until then...

©Disney Frozen

Monday, June 16, 2014

Using a Polycrylic Sealer with Chalk Paint®

I have another client reveal to share with you today. This is the second job I have completed for her, and again she brought me a gorgeous family heirloom. She grew up eating at this table. Now, she gets to gather around it with her own little ones and make some new memories.
painted kitchen table

Like I mentioned, this table has already lived a long life. So, the top was pretty beat up, and its finish was peeling in spots. Normally, I don't sand before painting, but I wanted the paint to go on smoothly since I was using white and it is a table top. I got my orbital sander out and used a medium sandpaper, 80 grit, to smooth it out.

The client selected Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® in Old White which I know you see a lot of on my site, but it truly goes with anything. It has so much more depth than your average pure white, and also really helps dark wood shine through when you are distressing.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

So You Want to Start a Blog? - Top Five Tips for Newbies

I am in between some projects right now and wanted to take some time to share my newbie blogging experience with anyone out there that is thinking or dreaming of starting a blog. If anyone would have told me a year ago that I would be running my own blog and that people would actually be reading it, I would have thought they were crazy. 

I started this blog as a way to share my love of crafting and my DIY adventures with family and friends, but it has grown into so much more than that. It has become a creative outlet for me that is really breathing new life into my everyday. For anyone that has toyed with the idea of starting a blog, I want to be the first to say, "Go for it!" 

By no means am I an expert, but I want to share just a few things I have learned in the past six months with Pretty Distressed.
starting-a-blog


Top Five Tips for Starting A Blog

1. Don't wait. You are never going to feel like you have enough time to blog. It is so easy to set up a template with numerous free platforms like Blogger, WordPress, Tumblr, Medium, etc. If you feel inspired, just jump in and start writing. You can slowly hone in on what you want your site to look like and what you want to share with each post.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Paint Color Selection for Dummies

Please don't be offended by the title of this post, because I am including myself in the "dummies" category. I have no background or education in design. I am just an everyday gal trying to make my home a space I can enjoy.

I recently repainted every square inch of my first floor myself and found the most stressful part was selecting my colors. I didn't have enough money to hire painters, let alone enough money to hire a designer to select colors for me, so my first stop was the Sherwin-Williams Pottery Barn collection. Clearly, Pottery Barn has tons of people with professional design experience and expertise, so I trust that the colors in this collection are on trend or classics that will stand the test of time.

I find it is easier to pin point what you don't like versus what you do like. My last three homes were warm neutrals, beiges or golds. After trying to decorate those homes, I knew I wanted to steer clear of those color families. I also knew I didn't want anything too bold. So that guided me toward picking a cool toned neutral, SW 7634 - Pediment.

From there I used the Sherwin-Williams ColorSnap® app to find its coordinating colors. I picked up a Color To Go® sample of each color and painted them on various walls around the main floor. This step cost me an extra $50 or so but it is so worth it. Don't trust paint sample chips from one of those strips you pick up at the paint store. You really need to put some paint on the wall and see how it looks in different rooms, on different walls and with different lighting. I decided I wanted a little more contrast between two of the colors and selected one shade lighter than what the app had suggested.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Dining Room - Before & After

It is reflection time again. I have shied away from sharing a before and after of my dining room because it is incomplete in my eyes. I still need some window treatments, wall hangings, a rug perhaps. But I am sick of waiting, and I want to share it with you because it is my happy place. Seriously, I sometimes just sit in my front room and stare at the dining room because it is so pretty and peaceful. 

Monday, June 2, 2014

Pin-spired: Antiqued Flower Pots Just in Time for Summer

Pinterest strikes again. I was Pin-spired last week to give my old flower pots a makeover just in time for some summer flowers. I learned about using petroleum jelly to distress with spray paint from Holly over at Down to Earth Style. I followed her instructions exactly, so head over to see how it is done. Her project is with a frame but the process is the same no matter what you are painting.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Grandma's Tables Upcycled

painted ethan allen furniture

These beautiful end tables were dropped off to me by a client several weeks ago. They belonged to her late grandmother who she spoke very fondly of and remembered her always loving the way she decorated. She wanted to pay homage to her by having these tables in her home, but their current finish wasn't meshing well with the rest of her decor. 

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® Video Tutorial #5 - Dark Wax


Today is the final installment of my Chalk Paint vlog series, and we are talking about dark wax. For those of you who haven't worked with it before, this stuff is amazing. It gives your piece a antique look in no time. If you love that lived in, shabby look, you will love dark wax.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Cottage Inspired Dining Hutch - Before & After

I know I owe you one more video tutorial on dark wax to complete our dresser makeover we have been working on for a couple of weeks now, but I have lots of other things I have been painting that I have been dying to share with you. So today, I am excited to reveal my cottage inspired dining hutch.



paris grey kitchen hutch

Monday, May 19, 2014

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® Video Tutorial #4 - Clear Wax


Here is the next installment in my Chalk Paint video tutorial series, clear wax. This is the trickiest step in my opinion. There is a learning curve with the waxing process, but I love the finish it creates. It is a lot prettier than a poly which can make your furniture look plastic coated.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® Video Tutorial #3 - Distressing

chalk paint video tutorial
In today's video, I am talking all about distressing. This step is one of my favorites, so much so I named my blog after it. Distressing really brings out the character of a piece. Instead of looking like something that was sprayed or dipped with some paint, it gives it depth and texture. Check out my tips on how to make your piece pretty distressed. 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® Video Tutorial #2 - 2nd Coat of Paint


In today's video, I am showing you how to paint your second coat of paint when refinishing a piece with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint®. It was a really windy day, so I hope you can hear me.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® Video Tutorial #1 - Prepping and 1st Coat


Over the next couple of weeks, I am going to share several videos that will document the refinishing process I use for furniture from start to finish. Today, I will cover prepping a piece along with painting the first coat.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Taking a Break...


My husband's brother got married this weekend, and it was one of the best nights ever. We danced the night away and are still trying to catch up on sleep from a long week. It is so refreshing to take a break every now and then. Stepping back and taking the time to enjoy life gives me a fresh perspective and burst of energy once I am ready to tackle a new project.

I will be breaking out my paint brushes this week. I have two pieces I am trying to finish up for our neighborhood garage sale and two possible jobs in the works for clients. Spring is in the air, and I am ready to create! Reveals coming soon.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

The Making of a Makeover

In my last post, I revealed my recent sideboard upcycle. There were simply too many details to share with you in one post, so today, I am going to give you the nitty gritty on this makeover. 

This piece arrived via a client and is something that I typically wouldn't gravitate toward refinishing on my own. The client didn't really have a vision of how she wanted it to look and gave me free reign to let my creative juices flow.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Sideboard w/ Leaves - Before & After

After a brief painting hiatus, I am back. I just completed another piece for a client this weekend. And I must confess, I was very scared when this piece was dropped off at my house. It was blonde oak, brass and in really rough shape. I don't know why I have such an aversion to brass, but it really makes me shudder.
09 10