Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Appliques... The Finishing Touch

Over the past couple of years, I've been on a painting frenzy. I've painted most of our dark stained furniture a creamy cottage white. Since most of the pieces were originally primitive in style, they aren't very fancy. The lines, for the most part, are straight and simple. That's why I've enjoyed using appliques as "the finishing touch." It kind of dresses them up and takes them from a primitive to a "shabby cottage" style.

This is the applique that I used on the drawers of my dining room hutch and my corner TV armoire. (Yes, I am a drippy, messy painter! ha ha)

This is the applique that I used on the four cabinet doors of the corner TV armoire.

These little cherub heads were used in the three sections of my jelly cupboard door. I wish I had used the larger sized cherub heads. But once these guys are on, they are there for life!

This little flower basket applique is on the pull out door of our recycling bin.

And there are two of these cherubs on the bottom doors of my dining room hutch. (And yup - there's a couple of more drips!!)

The only major pieces of furniture in my house that are still crying for a cottage transformation are in the bedroom... Our king sized pencil post bed, nightstands, armoire, bureau, and mirror. All of those pieces were bought at an unfinished furniture store back in 1989 and promptly stained with dark brown Minwax (Jacobean)... It's hard to believe we've had that set for almost twenty years now! Actually, our whole bedroom is in a time warp straight from the 80's, so hopefully we'll tackle that project sometime in the near future. And, of course, I'll be sure to share the transformation every step of the way. Hmmm... I wonder what kind of applique would look good across the top of the mirror??

Updated note to Michele (and anyone else who would like to see the entire furniture pieces)... If you just scroll down through my past posts, you will find photos and posts of all the pieces mentioned above, with the exception of the dining room hutch. I just realized I've never posted photos of that, so I'll do that soon!

Update #2: I've purchased appliques from several places on-line (some on eBay and unfortunately I don't remember the seller's name(s) because it was years ago!!). I can, however, recommend Rachel & Pia's Cottage since I have purchased appliques from them (click on the DO IT YOURSELF tab in their shop). In addition, The Bella Cottage and Do It Yourself Chic also carry furniture appliques. All of those shops are listed in my "Favorite Shops" sidebar.

Update #3: I do use various shade of white when I paint, but for furniture, the one I keep coming back to most often is Wal Mart's "Color Place Interior Latex Semi-Gloss Wall & Trim, Country White 5435." It's a great creamy white shade rather than a bright white (although bright white is what I chose for my fireplace).

Update #4: Rachel & Pia's has the cherub head appliques, The Bella Cottage has very similar full figure cherubs, Do It Yourself Chic has some other cherubs as well as a similar flower basket applique...

Update #5: I don't use any wax... just the latex semi-gloss paint. The appliques are either white or clay colored so I paint them black or dark brown once I have applied them to the furniture; then when I paint the furniture white, I leave some of the dark basecoat showing through here and there in the crevices of the appliques or I sand away a bit of the topcoat here and there to distress the appliques..



Michele said...

Oooh, I love those appliques!!! I'd love to see the furniture with the appliques on them!! I'd like to do that with my furniture, too so maybe I could get some ideas from yours. Super cute!!


Anonymous said...

I just love the appliques you use they add just the right touch... I like the drips... it looks like a real person did the work

cargol said...

So shabby charming, drips an all! I might have to get an applique (where do you get them?) to add to my little nightstand in my guest bedroom.

Anonymous said...

This is beautiful! And so helpful to have the info. Great job! I'm a terrible painter, but I wouldn't mind trying this.

Sarah Taylor said...

Kindred spirits we are indeed! I just checked out the post on your old windows. I absolutely love your ideas! I'm looking forward to getting to know you!

joyh82 said...

What lovely appliques. I really like the basket and angels!

maria said...

do you use different shades of white or the same color on all your pieces?
:) maria

Robin said...

Hi Donna! I just asked Karla at Karlas Cottage where she purchased her appliques on her kitchen cabinets! Now this! LOVE them all! Can you share where you get them?

Life on the Edge said...

These are awesome! I am in a mood to start painting furniture and have two projects that I hope to be able to start soon: a rattan chair I was given from Freecycle and an old hutch I bought for my kitchen. Thanks for adding some tips so the rest of us can purchase appliques and paint!

Joanne Kennedy said...

I just bought a lot of appliques but I didn't see any like the cute cherubs you have. Those are darling.

Do you finish your pieces with wax?


julia said...

These appliques are beautiful...very charming idea...thanks for sharing the pics(have to convince my dh that they are indispensable)

maggie said...

I love your appliques and thanks for all the info re where to get them and tips for painting furniture. It's on my to-do list.