My New Obsession: Annie Sloan® Graphite

I have a new color obsession to share with you- Annie Sloan®'s Graphite. Any fans of PrettyDistressed™ know I love me some Old White, Paris Grey, French Linen and an occasional Duck Egg Blue in her Chalk Paint™ line. In the past, I have shied away from using Graphite. It is the darkest color in the Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® pallet, and I had heard it can be tricky to work with. But let me tell you now that I have used it, I am dying to paint something in my house with this color. It's so rich and unique. Then once you put the wax on, it comes to life!



I am so grateful for my clients, and the way they push me out of my comfort zone. She selected Graphite for this dresser I was refinishing for her son's room. She has an amazing old century home and has a lot of antique brass throughout the home, so we knew we wanted to do a brass cup pull on the dresser. I selected the Martha Stewart Bedford Brass Canopy Cup Pull from HomeDepot.com. Graphite is really the ultimate complement to the antique brass. The cool thing about it is it's not a true black but more of a slate like a chalkboard.

My client only wanted mild distressing, so I went with a different technique than I usually use. Instead of making big brush strokes in every direction, I kept my strokes smooth and in one direction. I did two coats and really covered the wood. Then I took a 400 grit sandpaper and smoothed the entire piece down. This technique exposed just a smidge of the original finish on the edges of the drawers and corners. I finished it off with Annie Sloan clear wax.
antique brass pull



graphite

annie sloan graphite


chalk paint

I am really excited about working with Graphite more. I need it in my house somewhere! Trust me, you have to check it out for yourself. I've got some more projects in cue right now and can't wait to share more reveals with you soon. Happy painting!

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.
pretty distressed

She is a girl after my own heart and really let me distress the tar out of this thing. I also used a lot of Annie Sloan Dark Wax to antique it even farther. I shot this piece in its new home, an amazing three season porch off their kitchen with tons of windows and natural light. The thing that got me most excited is how well the Duck Egg Blue looks against the rust colored concrete floor. Gorge!


annie sloan roll top desk
I am very excited to add this beauty to my portfolio and am thinking I need to find a piece to paint Duck Egg Blue for my home. How about you? Would you be brave enough? If you have doubts, I hope this piece puts them at ease.

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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.


Here is the completed set all styled and looking gorgeous in its home. I told you my client has amazing taste. Thank you so much to her for giving us a peek into her home!



I don't think anyone should buy brand new furniture for their house. Why should you when you can make something old look this beautiful!

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.

annie sloan cream

Here are all the fabulous products that Annie Sloan Unfolded was gracious enough to send me for this transformation. I used Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint by Annie Sloan in the color Cream for the upholstery and French Linen for the frame. I finished the frame with both Clear Soft Wax and Dark Soft Wax, and I got to test out my first Annie Sloan brushes, the Annie Sloan Pure Bristle Brush and the Annie Sloan Wax Brush.


I started out by wetting all the fabric down with a spray bottle. You don't need to douse it, but it takes the paint better if you dampen it. You only need to do this on the first coat.

There are two ways to go about painting fabric. You can dip your brush in the paint and then in a cup of water or you can make a water/paint mix with a 1:1 ratio. The paint will be really thin like the consistency of skim milk. I found I liked using the watered-down paint better as the coverage was more consistent for me. 

The idea is to paint on several light layers of really diluted paint. You don't want to glob the paint on because it will be very hard when it dries and could crack your fabric. Think of it more like dying the fabric versus painting it. I did four coats total on my fabric, and I let them dry completely in between coats. The fabric can only take on so much paint when wet, so I waited a full 24 hours between coats. Also, don't worry about getting paint on your frame as long as you plan on painting it like I did. If not, tape it off.
painted fabric

After I was happy with the coverage of my fabric, I moved onto painting the frame which I used the Annie Sloan Pure Bristle Brush. This brush is great for making expressive movement with the paint, and the paint really grabs onto the brush which makes getting the perfect coverage even easier. 
annie sloan cream

Once the frame was painted, I roughed it up a bit with sandpaper then waxed it with Clear Soft Wax and Dark Soft Wax. I was able to try out my first Annie Sloan Wax Brush, and I am obsessed. If you are looking to invest in a good quality wax brush, this is it. The wax went on seamlessly without having to use much elbow grease. Other brushes I have used make the wax ball up and you really have to use some muscle to work it into the paint. Another awesome feature of the brush is its tapered edge that allowed me to get in all the cracks and crevices of the frame with ease. This is a great brush to have if you are working on a piece with a lot of detail and definitely worth the investment in my opinion.

Angel and I were both amazed by the transformation of this piece. I can't wait to see what she comes up with for her client shoots with this gem. I can just see a little newborn perched on it or a family shot in an open field. I am for sure getting a photo session with my family on it soon! 
painted couch


chalk paint fabric

Thanks again to my friends at Annie Sloan Unfolded for making this project possible. If you want to find your local Chalk Paint® Stockist, you can use their Stockist Locator. Anyone out there intrigued to try fabric painting for yourself? 

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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.


I did minimal distressing on these because I didn't want any of that red paint peeking through. These were finished off with a coat of Annie Sloan Clear Wax and Dark Wax. These chairs went from looking dark and modern to rich and cozy. I am really digging their new look.


Dining tables and chairs are no joke. It has taken me quite a while to finish this project, but it was oh so worth it. The results make it all worth it.