Creative chair at art show Southwest Visual Arts University

Sean Wells via iPhone

September 1, 2012 at 4:11 am Leave a comment

“Nice” packaging design at my local pharmacy

Sean Wells via iPhone

February 21, 2012 at 9:25 pm Leave a comment

Before & After: Sewing Table





A quick rehab of a 1970’s sewing table.  I was enamored with the lattice weave front, so I decided to accentuate the panels by using contrasting colors at the natural break lines.  I discovered four cans of black gloss spray paint at my Mom’s house, so that determined my base color.  Then, I had 1 can of “Ivy Leaf” Krylon gloss that I have been itching to use.  It’s a bright avocado color.  It was not enough to paint all the green, so I used a partial can of an evergreen color for the top.  I was disappointed at first that I didn’t have enough of the bright green, but I actually liked it better when I was done.  It’s much more sophisticated this way.  I kept the existing handles because i liked their lines and shot them with the black and a clear coat.  I put a hefty clear coat on the whole thing to give it a lacquer look.  I hit the top black trim a lot and let the overspray fall on to the evergreen.  This gave the evergreen a darkened edge, which I was going to correct, but then decided to keep.  It reminded me of the old leather table tops that get the weathered fade at the edges.

Here is the masking stage.  I did the majority of the masking and painting in complete darkness.  It’s not the best idea, but it made it more exciting to see it in the morning and it’s sometimes the only me-time option when you have toddlers.  I used blue painter’s tape and some scrap paper.

Step by step:

  1. Removed all hardware and hidden sewing machine using mostly a phillips head screwdriver.
  2. Light sanding with a fine 220 grit sandpaper.
  3. Gray primer on all exposed wood.
  4. Light sanding fine grit paper again.
  5. 2 coats of gloss black spray paint.  Remember to coat hardward, too!
  6. After completely drying, mask off any areas you want to remain black.
  7. If the second color is very sheer (usually colors that are saturated with not a lot of creaminess in them), I recommend hitting the panel areas with a good primer base coat (ideally white).  I had a can of emerald green that had been sitting around.  Let dry.
  8. Hit with 2 coats of Ivy Leaf Krylon (let dry in between).
  9. After dry to the touch, remove masking (oh, this step was soooo fun).
  10. Reattach hardware.
  11. Several coats of clear gloss (let dry n between).
  12. Voila!

lattice front detail before after lattice detail

This piece is headed for the consignment shop today!

August 17, 2011 at 4:53 pm Leave a comment

Grandma B’s cabinet

This cabinet has been in my husband’s family for years. Grandma B used this cabinet to house her canned goods in her Las Cruces home up until she moved to Albuquerque. When my husband and I moved into our Phoenix apartment we had a very small kitchen with limited storage space. My mother-in-law understood our need for additional storage space and offered us Grandma B’s cabinet. Over the years this cabinet has been moved numerous times and endured a decent amount of wear and tear. It was time to give Grandma B’s cabinet a fresh coat of paint. I anticipated it would take some time but didn’t expect that it would take me months to complete.
~ Beth

March 7, 2011 at 5:36 pm 1 comment

First Featured Redesign For Me!

Better After BlogJust got word my Elton chair before and after was featured on the ever-popular Better after blog!  It’s my first piece to be featured on another blog–what a compliment.  It’s a fun blog that just culls through the oodles of sites and just shows the yummy before and after shots of furniture refinishing projects.  It’s a great resource for inspiration and ideas.  Thank you Beth for forwarding my chair pics & thank you Lindsey for noticing our little blog!

March 1, 2011 at 8:39 am Leave a comment

Get A Handle On Things

Spotted at Home Depot (top row)–gorgeous undulating chrome handles. These remind me of watching the blob of mercury roll around after the thermometer broke (and before I knew it was deadly stuff). This would be a fun accent on asimple dresser. A bit on the pricey side at $5.95 for the large one on the left (measuring about 2″x6″), but maybe if there were just two drawers…

Sean Wells via iPhone

February 28, 2011 at 11:19 pm 2 comments

A Chair for Elton

Dumpster chair getting a coat of spray paintThis is the before and after of the chair I saved from the dumpster.  It wasn’t a true ‘dumpster dive’ since, technically, the abandoned chair was sitting next to the dumpster.  But, it was a classic salvage and refinish project.  I could not make up my mind on which direction to take this.  I toyed with keeping the original seat color (mauve) which was in good condition.  I pulled out all my seat fabrics and kept putting together likely pairs like similar color schemes (pink to mauve and avocado to olive) which were just ho-hum.  I have a ton of red velvet so I contemplated going with a red seat and a white chair, like the Queen’s throne in Alice in Wonderland.  But, then I stumbled across this crazy tiger print canvas fabric in orange and hot pink.  I’ve never put it to use, but I have yards of it.  Since I only have the single chair, I thought it could really be loud and be a stand-alone accent piece for someone REALLY daring or maybe for a funky hair salon type atmosphere.  Anyway, the refinishing was short and sweet.  Here’s the quick breakdown:


    Removed broken pieces

  2. Tightened and reglued connections
  3. Reinforced weak leg and arm joints
  4. Applied sandable wood filler on ding-ed areas
  5. Lightly sanded
  6. 1 can gray acrylic spray primer
  7. 1 can Krylon Bauhaus Orange acrylic spray
  8. Power staple gunned new fabric on seat
chair refinishing project


So glad I took the time to put on a new seat fabric.  I HIGHLY recommend investing in a power staple gun if you plan to refinish.  It is so much more pleasurable to work with than the manual gun.  I regret using a grey primer as a base.  The white primer was more expensive, but would have given me a crisper orange color.  The Krylon Bauhaus Orange is lovely, but pretty sheer.  OK, hope you like it as much as I!  It will go into my new booth space 37A at Antiques & Things 4710 Central Ave.  Oh, my Chinese Vanity sold for full price from the consignment shop–whohoo!

February 23, 2011 at 4:54 am 6 comments

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