Sunday, September 18, 2011

A Lesson Learned (or when NOT to paint a table aqua)

Some of you may remember a post from a few Wednesdays ago when I had a really lovely day. I found a cute French-ish chair for $4 in a thrift store that feeds and ministers to homeless people. Later, I went to a women's event at my church and won a painting of a chair.  

The reason I even bring that up is because the first time I was at that little thrift store, I bought a table. They don't accept debit cards there. Debit is how I roll most of the time. I had stopped in while running an errand, and had a $5 bill in my pocket. I purchased a couple of small items, and said, "I like that little table, and I'd get it, but the only cash I have now is this $5." The man sold it to me for the balance of my change, commenting that he'd rather buy a gallon of milk to feed homeless than miss the sale. It was sturdy and a cute shape, but the top was in a sad state. Still, it had potential and it was a bargain. I decided I'd paint it some day.

Well, someday turned out to be yesterday. On Friday, I'd purchased a pale aqua spray paint (Krylon's Catalina Mist) at Lowe's so I could add some cuteness to the little table. (I bought some other items too, but that's another post!) 

Saturday is my big housework day, so I got up early and began cleaning. About lunch time, I made it outside to tackle some spray painting projects. I did remember to take a few before photos! 

I began painting, and got a good first coat on the base of the table. It was a warm and breezy day, so the paint dried quickly. It was time to turn the little table over and put a coat on the underside. Much to my surprise, I saw a mark that made me cringe. 

Well, needless to say, I was shocked! I knew Heywood Wakefield made those funky, clean-lined mid- century modern pieces of blonde wood, but I had no idea they made bent wood or rattan furniture! And I'd just completely de-valued a piece that is apparently fairly rare and probably worth at least a couple hundred dollars. Ouch. Note one to self: Before painting anything, inspect it properly for marks. Note two to self: Visit that little thrift store more often.

SO, now what? Forget painting the rest of the table and go get some paint stripper? It might destroy the rattan bindings, which were still tight and in good shape. I was totally out of my league. I had dinner plans, and I had to get a shower and make a trip to the store before 6 o'clock, so I snapped some photos and called it a day. After all, why miss an opportunity to publicly humiliate myself in front of a few followers (well, potentially the world!) What a great way to celebrate my one month milestone today! Woo hoo!

When I got home, I Googled Heywood Wakefield and discovered they were making wicker and rattan furniture since 1826 - well before the mid-century modern pieces I was familiar with. Follow this link for more information. My table was most likely made before 1920. 

I tried Googling more things like "what to do if you painted a Heywood Wakefield table." I love Google, but this time, I didn't get much information. I looked at some of the new posts on the amazing blogs I follow on Google Reader then went to bed.

When I got back to it today I decided to just go with it. I shared some love with the table top via my palm sander and some paste wax. It cleaned up nicely. 

I think the painted base with the natural top looks charming - like something you'd find in a Florida beach house. 

So, I pulled out some old books and a rose painting, mixed them with a new modern white glass vase, and voila!

What did I learn from this experience? Look more closely at every piece I find before I paint it - not while painting it! That said, I like the way this table looks in her new Catalina Mist outfit. I realize it may upset some purists; one of the pages I saw on Google read that a piece had been "violated by three layers of paint.

I may have significantly devalued this little table in the eyes of the world, but to me, she looks pretty cute. 

Word for the Day:

I Peter 3:3-4

3 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. 4 Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.

Until next time,


Linking with: - It doesn't have to be perfect...


refresh restyle said...

It looks great, did you find out if it devalued the piece to paint it? I love the color!

outjunking said...

You are still a lucky junker, at least you found a Heywood Wakefield piece and cheap too. It looks like you left the top natural and I like the way you finished it. You did good girlfriend.

Revi said...

Hi Debbie and Lisa,

I don't know how much, but on Antiques Roadshow, a piece is always worth a fraction of the value once it has been refinished or painted. If anyone knows anything about HW values and what happens once they've been painted, I'd love to know!

I HAVE been blessed in my recent junking adventures. Did you read about the sterling silver trophy lamp I found a few weeks back? That one was a bit more obvious to me. I didn't paint it :) I paint everything that doesn't move, so that's a good thing! Thanks for your kind words, and for stopping by!

Wendy said...

Oh well, it'll be devalued only when you sell it. Let your great-grandchildren worry about that.

Burlap Luxe said...

Hi Revi
Thank you for your beautiful visit, I too have painted piece that may be worth more if I had left it alone, yet the piece had more value to me painted :) I never shy from loving a piece to the point of not painting it if I have no plans of ever selling it. But if I had a piece that was worth enough to buy or pay off a morgage then I might have to rethink a shabby paint job :)

This is a beautiful piece to love girl!
let it live out its time loving you back for the new life you gave it letting the piece take refuge in your home of shelter!

God bless!
blessings to you and yours.

Amanda Dale said...

Hey Revi! Thanks for stopping by The Ivy Cottage Blog. This is my first time visiting you!

Don't worry about the paint! It is about your home and your needs, not the money after all. No worries, just enjoy . . . plus, I love the soft aqua color.


Amanda Dale said...

One more thing . . . we have a Facebook group for Texas Bloggers . . . want to join? If so, email me your full name and I will invite you to join!

Allison Shops said...

Ouch! Oh well, I do love the color! It looks great. I have a HW rocking chair that is not the norm. Great pieces.

Dropping by from Met Monday.

Vintage Gumwood Cabinet Kitchen

farmhouse-story said...

i just love the color, revi! and,in the end, you have a beautiful table to use and love!

Revi said...

Hi Lynn, Allison,Amanda and Dore,
Thanks for your kind encouraging comments! I can't tell you how much I love the community of positive people! Bottom line, it's a table I paid 3 bucks for and it's cute. Other than that, it doesn't change my life a bit. Nice to keep things in perspective, and I appreciate all of you!
Blessings, Revi

Suzie @ The Accent Piece said...

I agree - Florida beach house :) Looks great! I'm your newest follower!

Cassie Bustamante said...

ya know what, don't worry about it. things happen and frankly. i like the look of the table now better. so sometimes just do what you want. it's ok!!

Revi said...

Thanks for following Suzie, and thanks for stopping by Cassie!
Suzie, I'm coming over to see you now.

Unknown said...

Don't you love not being perfect? I do!! I'm your newest imperfect follower-stop by for a visit!!

Anonymous said...

Loved your post. I saw a small dining table and four bamboo chairs on a Facebook swip swop site and decided to get them. $75 took all. I really wanted the chairs having fallen in love with some at a furniture store at $350 each that were painted teal. Perfect for my beach house, right? So I figured I'd paint these and get the same result. When my husband helped me unload them I saw the Heywood Wakefield stamp. Now I am torn...paint and devalue but get the look I want or try to refinish. Sigh.