Monday, August 29, 2016

A Vintage Pair of Side Tables

I spotted these lovely side tables yesterday morning at the Mansfield Flea Market and adored them at first blush. The form is absolutely exceptional, I've never seen anything quite like it, and they're beautifully built, probably from about 1950. They still retain the original label on the inside of the drawer, made by Maslow Freen Furniture of New York, and I suspect they were quite pricey when first made.
       The thing I love most about these is how modern they are. The perfect example of timeless design. I'm sure they looked fabulous in their first home, and now sixty five years later, with just a bit of paint, they look brand new and chic once more. They're a nice size and sturdy as can be, perfect either as nightstands or side tables. I wish I had a spot for them in my house. I know I'll never see another pair as elegant and charming.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Great 25k Giveaway!

Well hot damn if we haven't flown past 25,000 likes on the Heir and Space Facebook page!! It happened so fast it's hard to believe we were at somewhere around 500 two years ago at this time. And to celebrate I'm hosting another giveaway! One of you is going to win this beautiful c.1925 solid poplar vanity table. It's so cute and cheeky and I can't wait to give it away to a lucky winner.
Just like with the other giveaways- a few easy rules.

and remember all you have to do to enter is click below!

And for all my far away furniture-istas, fear not! You can be a winner too! the 2nd prize will be a custom watercolor painting which I can ship to you anywhere in the world! Rules for that are below as well.
GOOD LUCK!!!! Woohoo!!

Da Rules-------

1. I don't ship my furniture. If you live far away and want to enter, that's fine, but you're fully responsible for any shipping costs and logistics.

2. The contest will start tomorrow morning at 8:30am and run until Friday Sept. 2nd at 8:30am at which point some fancy computer stuff that I don't understand will randomly select our two winners and I'll shoot you an email to tell you you're the winner!!!

3.  In order to enter I ask that you just help spread the word about Heir and Space. Tell a friend, share one of my Facebook posts, follow me on instagram (@heirandspace) or like the Heir and Space Facebook page. You can also follow me on twitter but I swear a lot there, so just fair warning. This is on the honor system, and I'm trusting you. You can enter once a day, just share or tell someone or whatever once a day. That's fair right? Totally fair.

*if you live far away and don't want to deal with shipping, don't worry. I'm also hosting a giveaway for a custom piece of artwork, which I will ship to the lucky winner! You can enter that giveaway here! (and YES, you can enter both contests!!)

2nd prize ruuuuuules

1. I will paint you a custom watercolor!!! the piece can be no larger than 9.5" x 7.5", 
but I will custom mat and frame it. I'm pretty good at house portraits, seascapes and landscapes, and total shit at everything else. So choose your requested subject matter wisely. That being said, if you want an atrocious painting of your cat Fluffy, let's do it. 

2. I will cover the shipping charges of mailing the painting to the winner, so feel free to enter, wherever you live anywhere in the world!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

An Antique Oak Dresser in Blue

I'm determined to get caught up on my backlog of blog posts today! For those of you who follow me on other social media, some of this content will be a repeat. For those of you who only follow the blog- Today is your lucky day!!!

I bought this sweet c.1900 solid oak dresser as part of a group from a gal out in the country in Columbia, CT. It is SUCH a pretty drive between my house and hers and I have to say, that is one of my favorite parts of the job. Connecticut is a gorgeous place in every season, and the drives to pick up furniture are always a treat. The drives to deliver furniture, on the other hand, are white knuckle torture sessions as I imagine every possible thing that could go wrong before I get the furniture safely inside the client's house.

           So I knew as soon as I saw this dresser and mirror that I wanted to paint it blue. I mixed up a custom medium blue with a hint of duck egg and highlighted the raised carving on the mirror with a lighter shade. I was so pleased with how nicely the top sanded out, a hundred years of use and now it looks brand new once more. I stained it a honey color and sealed it. I opted to keep the original stamped brass drawer pulls because they're funky and silly and wonderfully Art Nouveau.

Monday, August 22, 2016

A Solid Oak Dresser and Mirror in Blue

Can I whine for a minute or two guys and gals? Will you indulge me?
My teeth hurt SO MUCH. I had a broken wisdom tooth that I was actively ignoring, and ignoring and ignoring. And then a dentist told me I needed a double root canal, but I ignored it, cause it didn't hurt and who was $6,000 sitting around to throw at a miserable experience where someone claws at your mouth and tries to murder you via pokey metal instruments for several hours. 
And now both the wisdom tooth and the two molars are screaming at me. I am
And my truck broke on Saturday. I *think* it needs new brakes, buuuuuuut it might also need something else since the grinding noise continues even when I'm not braking. 
Needless to say I'm feeling very sorry for myself. I can't even sip my coffee without lightening jabs of cold white pain. Yay. 

The only way I think I'll ever be able to afford this is to sell all my antiques. The collection I've put together for a decade, the things that I found that were good and good deals (because I could never afford them if they were full price). 

Anyway, here's a dresser. It's a nice dresser. It's solid oak. It comes with a matching mirror. Probably one of you should buy it to help fund my dental torture. 

Friday, August 19, 2016

A Dresser with Jelly Fish

Ack! I'm sorry, I've been lazy and not posting nearly enough!! I've got a backlog of about seven pieces of furniture to blog about! Pro-tip, when I'm this lazy I still post my new projects on all my other social media fronts as I finish them, so if you want to stay in the loop, be sure to follow me on one of these

Fair warning- I swear a lot on my twitter page.

So back to business. Here's a great solid maple vintage dresser that I picked up from the ReStore in Cromwell last week. That place is fast becoming my FAVORITE furniture source!!

It's a fabulous piece of furniture in great condition, but was a little ho-hum. I refinished the top, painted the case, and then to add a little zip, I hand painted jelly fish swooshing across it.
I've got a new technique for painting detail work on furniture. I've found that by using highly waterlogged acrylic paint I can get a watercolor effect. I paint directly onto the painted ground, then distress the whole thing, then seal it with wax. It's just as durable as the rest of the painted surface!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

A Vintage Maple Dresser in Yellow

Ready for a fall preview? I am! Pottery Barn put out their Halloween sneak peek this week, and I've already poured through page after page of pumpkin-y goodness. I've got three candles burning on my desk right now: Caramel Apple, Rustic Apple, and Farmhouse Pumpkin, and I'm already dreaming of sweater shopping. It'll be fall before we know it, which is fine by me.

              I picked up this sweet vintage maple dresser at the flea market on Sunday morning and set to work on it right away. It's quite a large piece, both tall and wide, and offers considerable storage in its big deep drawers. For me its greatest charm is in the oversized bracket feet, they're sweet as can be! Often these mid 20th century dressers have smaller, plainer ogee feet, so these bracket feet are a standout- handsome and playful. And with that playful theme in mind, I painted the case in a warm medium yellow, not as bold as a mustard, not as simple as a butter. I kept the original turned drawer pulls, and refinished the top in a classic english chestnut shade. The entire piece is rock maple throughout and not surprisingly and it's nice and solid.

A Vintage Maple Desk in Pearl Gray

My home is a study in earth tones, primarily shades of ochre, terra-cotta, and olive, and I love it that way. I've gravitated towards those warm, deeply saturated hues for most of my adult life, and since they're not particularly popular and sell poorly, refinishing furniture for my house is often the only time I'm able to paint with those colors, an opportunity I always treasure.

          That being said, sometimes I end up refinishing a piece of furniture so enchanting and so far outside my own color scheme I want to burn my house to the ground and start from scratch with an entirely new scheme. This desk is just such a temptingly wicked piece. There is no gray in my house, it would stick out like a sore thumb, but ye gods I lust for this desk. Somewhere, somehow, I have some last store of self control, which I now must call upon. I will sell this desk, one of you will own this beauty.

              The piece started as a fairly mundane vintage solid rock maple executive style desk by Pennsylvania House. Though wonderfully built and well preserved, it was dark, dreary, and dare I say, very sticky for some reason. I wanted to breath new life into the piece, fresh and airy and elegant as possible, so I painted it in a new custom mixed shade of the palest gray, Mother of Pearl. To further the iridescent effect I distressed and sanded the painted surface and then sealed it with a custom burnt sienna toned wax. I don't often use wax tones other than my typical dark walnut shade, but I am blown away by how superb the result was on this gray. I'll definitely be using this technique again!
              The ho-hum brass Chippendale pulls were holding the desk back badly, so I removed them, filled the old holes, and replaced them with re-colored salvaged brass pulls, the silver giving the desk a tone on tone sophistication that plays up the ornate detail of the pulls against the soft sheen of the pearl gray paint. I refinished the solid maple top in a pale honey color. It's flawless and beautifully figured. I know I've basically just written a love letter to this desk. Apologies but I'm obsessed with it.

Friday, August 5, 2016

A Vintage Maple Hutch in Red

I love a little hutch. They're so cute and so ridiculously handy in decorating a home. You can put a little hutch like this basically anywhere. The traditional place for one would be the dining room of course, but because this little guy is wonderfully petite, it could just as easily go in a bathroom, a hallway, a study, or a kitchen. But most of all I think it would make a fabulous coffee bar. Just picture it lined up with chunky white mugs and canisters of coffee beans!! I left the old hooks across the top shelf for that very purpose.
         The piece is solid maple and I refinished the top in a rich deep tone. From the moment I spotted this little guy at the Cromwell ReStore I knew I wanted to paint it red. And red's not a color I use very often, so it's a bit of a risky move. I custom mixed the shade, named 'Fraktur', which has a warmth that references the stunning dutch 18th century cupboards made in Pennsylvania and New York. I took the dutch theme one step further and painted the raised panels of the doors and drawer, and the scrollwork of the shelves in a sliiiiightly different shade that leans more toward taupe. The effect doesn't hit you over the head, but helps to give the piece depth and character. I used salvaged 19th century brass pulls painted soft black for the drawer.

A Vintage Sideboard in Aqua

This is a fabulous vintage cherry and poplar sideboard I picked up from the Cromwell Restore on Wednesday. It's got the best form, with that handsome curve to the center drawers, and excellent patina'd brass pulls with absurd diamond shaped post plates, and dainty brass capped feet that all but take my breath away. When I'm furniture shopping I am almost always either singing to myself under my breath (hey, it's a happy time for me) or muttering as I work through intense mental gymnastics such as "will this sell?" and "How much of a pain in the ass would this drawer be to fix?". As I walked by this piece, and checked the drawers, and the feet, and the condition of the top, and the price I said just one thing, "Oh hell yea, you're coming home with me".  The lady in the next aisle over shot me a glare and scurried away. Whoops.

         The sideboard is not marked by a manufacturer but I'll be damned if it isn't by the White Furniture Company. It has all their classic hallmarks- chunky well made rather whimsical bail brass pulls, cherry veneer, with solid cherry drawers and tulip poplar secondary wood, tapered rectangular under block brass tipped feet, and drawers that work like butter.

          So I know this is an intensely bold color choice on this piece, but it's meant to be a showstopper, it was always intended to be a room-maker, and in this next phase in its life I wanted to honor that design ferocity. It's a custom mixed aqua I've named 'Surf Board'. I highlighted the trimwork on the drawers with a detail brush and a light coating of a pale mint green. I left the pulls tarnished because I love how the oxidation plays along with the aqua and mint. The interior is just a simple mocha. I sanded the top to reveal the absolutely spectacular cherry veneer that was hidden under the old yellowed opaque surface. I stained it darker than sealed it with seven coats of oil based poly until it was whisper smooth.