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Ready to Paint, But What Color?

Friday, January 20th, 2012

Anther great reader question this week, and one I’ve had a couple of times before.  My mantra has always been if you don’t like an old tired piece of furniture you own, then paint it!  Lots of people share that idea and want to reinvent their furniture with a coat paint but like Mina, they get stuck on deciding what color to choose. 

“I would like some advice on some pieces of furniture for my bedroom. I am new at this and really don’t know where to start.  For my bedroom I’d love some color mixed with black, grey, and white.  I want to mix in new pieces of furniture (like a headboard) with old/repainted night stands and an old chest.  What color do you think I should paint them?  Should I brush paint or spray paint? Any thoughts or ideas you have would be greatly appreciated.”  ~ Mina

The answer is completely subjective and depends on so many factors, your favorite colors, the space itself, and of course the style of the piece of furniture. I like to think of it this way.  If you’re looking for a piece that will harmonize with other players in the room then choose a classic or more neutral color, like cream, gray, or black, and then pull color into the space with your wall paint, textiles, and accessories.  But if you’re looking for a showstopper, or one that will be a focal point and be more dominant in the space, then by all means, choose a brighter color.

There’s a great source of inspiration for painted furniture and a site I absolutely love. I wrote about Somerset Bay two years ago, and I find their entire collection so inspiring, every color is spot on.  

Take a peek at a few of their classic neutrals …

little pine key chest somerset bay

somerset entertainment

gloucester chest

 

 

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50 Things to Write About When You Have Writer’s Block

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

A new blogger Abby wrote to me last week asking how I find stuff to write about everyday and I had to really think about it. I don’t often suffer from writer’s block but I used to in the beginning. These days, it just sorta comes to me at night which is why I keep a notebook by my bed of thoughts and ideas. I also get inspired from a lot of what I read online.

Writer’s block is a real issue that bloggers encounter at some point. It can be mild or it can be crippling.  It’s that feeling of not knowing what to say, what to write, what to put out there and to be frank I didn’t really know how to answer Abby’s question.

writers block button

But then it came to me last night. How about 50 blog posts from writers that I’ve bookmarked or remembered from the past year. All of these posts are great because they’re personal and/or offer a takeaway. So here you go Abby, fifty great examples of what to write about when you can’t think of anything at all.

1.  Answer a reader’s question (like Kristi did).

2.  Rediscover your home (like Courtney).

3.  Share your vacation photos (love Stefanie’s).

4.  Make a funny observation (like Steph).

5.  Share a great bargain (like Emily).

6.  Teach readers something technical you know all about (like Amy).

7.  Start a clever series.

8.  Try something cool and wacky. (like Ree)

9.  Share some pretty pictures.

10.  Talk about a device that makes your world complete (like Holly).

milk frother life int the fun lane

via In the Fun Lane

 

 

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8 Essentials for Painting Furniture

Friday, December 30th, 2011

It’s no secret I love to paint furniture. Call me strange, but I find fixing up and painting an old piece therapeutic. What was once a hobby is now becoming creative outlet and a small source of income for me. I’ve picked up a few great pieces from thrift stores in the last two weeks that I can’t wait to paint, so while the hub and I were running errands the other day, we made a stop at my local True Value Hardware for a few supplies. Our conversation went something like this: 

“I just need some paint and Floetrol for those pieces in the garage”  and he asked, “Have you written about that?” and I replied “Yes” and he said “Well have you showed them what you’re talking about?” and I said “Yes” and he said, “You should make a video” and I thought well I’m not prepared for that and he said “Just do it” and so I said, “OK”.  So what was supposed to be a quick pit stop turned into an impromptu tour of a few aisles of the paint department at my local True Value and the eight essentials you’ll need for a basic paint job on a piece of furniture.

Let me preface by saying there are several techniques for painting furniture and many many products to choose from. I’m a fan of a quick spray paint job and also the latest sensation, Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and I’ll continue to use those products in the future. There are also glazing and distressing techniques and more advanced tools you can use like a sprayer (I got a Wagner for Christmas and will be trying it out soon) and all of that will make a great eBook someday.

But for those of you just starting out and not knowing how to navigate the aisles of a home improvement or paint store and also staring at a piece you’ve scored and just want to change it up with a coat of paint, here are eight of my essential tools for a basic paint job on any piece of wood or laminate furniture.

I apologize for the the distracting conversation and 80s rock in the background, but this was spur of the moment. Feel free to name those background tunes in the comment section if you can! 

 

 

Like I mentioned in the video, both water based Minwax Polycrylic and Varathane are great for satin to gloss sheens but for a matte or hand rubbed finish turn to waxes.  Fiddes & Sons, SC Johnson, Minwax, and Briwax are just a few you’ll find on the shelf depending on where you shop. 

More great makeovers coming in 2012, can’t wait!

 

True Value Blog Squad legalese: “I was one of the bloggers selected by True Value to work on the DIY Squad. I have been compensated for my time commitment to the program as well as my writing about my experience. I have also been compensated for the materials needed for my DIY projects. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.”

 

 

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