I continue my adventure into the blending technique world. There are so many ways to play and explore it. Today I am going to show you one more.
The story of this chest is a cute one. Remember this other bohemian chest I painted? Well, even after I sold it, I kept receiving messages from people who had seen it on my Instagram or Etsy Shop, asking if I had another one of those for sale. One of these people was this lovely lady from South Carolina, who wanted a storage chest to gift her granddaughter for her 13th birthday. She decided to place a commission order and I went on a quest for a pretty piece that I could paint for her. I soon found this large, beautiful Lane chest not too far from my house and we agreed it was the perfect one for the project.
The original idea was to replicate the finish of my previous bohemian chest, but my client and her daughter went back and forth on the subject and concluded that their soon-to-be teenager would grow out of those colors in a few years, so they decided to go for something more neutral. The final choice was shades of gray. Well, you know I love me grays too right my friends?
I prepared some samples of possible finishes and mailed them to her. Once she picked one, I went to work.
Only the preparation of this piece took me three days! There was a lot of scratches, missing veneer, and a huge piece of the front left foot was missing. I had to rebuild that foot with wood filler.
When I was halfway done with the painting, I decided I should record the process because there was a good chance the final result would be nice enough for a tutorial, so I made this video.
Here are all the supplies I used and some affiliate links* for your convenience.
- Electric Sander and Sandpaper
- Bondo Wood Filler
- Water and Vinegar for cleaning
- Zinsser Clear Shellac
- StaalMeester Flat Paintbrush
- Fusion Mineral Paint “Lamp White”
- Fusion Mineral Paint ”Ash”
- Modern Masters Metallic Paint Black Pearl
- Modern Masters Metallic Paint Silver
- General Finishes Water Based Top Coat, satin
- Chip brushes
- Artist brushes
- Paper plate
I don’t know how this technique is called, but I decided to name it “texturized blending” because I blended two different colors using a lot of water, and at the same time, I added some texture by dabbing the surface with my chip brush instead of brushing it smoothly as I usually do.
After I made all the repairs and cleaned the chest throughout, I applied a coat of shellac and let it dry for about an hour. It dries super fast.
Next, I used my high-quality brush to apply a base coat of antique white over the entire piece. I normally start painting with my pieces upside down to make sure I don’t leave any spots without paint.
I let the base coat dry overnight, then started the fun part. The actual blending.
I used a very old, worn-out chip brush for this process. The worse the bristles, the better the texture they give.
I wanted a smoky, cloudy effect, so I just kept dabbing my wet brush with both colors, starting from the center and expanding to the sides. I chose to leave the edges and the bottom parts darker, but you can go with whatever pattern you prefer.
I kept my brush wet at all times, by spraying water directly on my brushes, and not on the piece. The water is what allows the colors to blend smoothly, and avoid harsh lines between them.
I painted the legs with a mix of ash, which is the dark gray, and a metallic color called Black Pearl, by Modern Masters.
This chest had these beautiful appliques, and I thought I needed to do something for them to pop, so brushed a little bit of silver with a small artist brush.
The last thing I did after all was dry was to seal it with General Finishes top coat, satin.
The final touch, which was one of my client’s request, was to paint her granddaughter’s initials on the chest lid. I showed her some design options I found on the internet, then drew the one she chose on the lid using a transfer paper. I painted the monogram in a mix of Black Pearl and Ash, using a small artist brush.
And now, all the pictures!
I’m shipping this beauty to Georgia (where my client’s granddaughter lives) in a few days. My client is very happy with the final result. I hope her dear girl will appreciate such a thoughtful gesture from her grandma.
Let me know what you think! I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. If you have questions, leave them in the comments and I will reply to all of them.
Thank you so much for reading!
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* If you buy an item through my affiliate links, I receive a small commission from Amazon. There is no additional cost to you.