Thursday, 10 October 2013

Buffing it up

Today I had the opportunity to try a brand new product find from Spruce Collective.
This little gem attaches to your drill and is used to buff! Now as much as I enjoy busting my ass to polish up the never ending assembly line of waxed furniture, this is an AMAZING time and energy saver. It lost quite a few bristles during my first session, but it didn't affect the finished outcome. It buffed the wax up to a beautiful shine with very minimal effort. The most effort was trying to keep the buffer stable and avoid it from running away on me. 
I wouldn't recommend using this attachment to apply your wax, only to buff it after you have applied a thin, even layer with either a soft cloth, or a waxing brush. I would also recommend having two. One for clear and one for dark wax. I was happy that the bristles didn't end up gunky after I was done, unlike a wax brush after an application.   
All in all, I really loved this product. With a price point of $28.00, I think it's completely worth the investment. Considering the time and effort I saved, it earned points during the first use! You know that I love finding new ways to avoid effort! You can find this product in store at Spruce Collective on Montrose Ave in Abbotsford BC. 

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Table for firewood?

This is my kitchen table. We've had it for about 6 yrs, and it was really starting to show it's wear and tear. A couple chairs had some minor damage and the top looked terrible, thanks to my children using their cutlery to "trace" things into the finish.

I went ahead and clamped and glued the fractures, and filled the spots with gaps and sanded it all smooth. Then I took to painting the chairs....all 8. This was my first attempt with a paint sprayer and once we got it all figured out, I was quite impressed. I did the first coat with the sprayer and the second coat with a brush. Because I wanted really minimal distressing and a fairly smooth finish, I opted to dry sand the chairs. It feels like I have been painting chairs for weeks....oh wait, I have!

This was the first time I had worked with Endurance Finish from Ce Ce Caldwell. I started with the Satin Finish, but I wanted something a bit more durable as the table clearly takes some serious abuse.I was SO impressed with this product. It dries to a really tough finish and applies like water. Then as I got to the bottom of the can, things took a turn.....

(Remember that I have been plugging away at this for the entire month of July in small portions. It's been a VERY time consuming project and I am completely bored and over this stupid table. Keep that in mind as this post continues.....)

 After 2 full coats of Beckley Coal on the table top, I decided to wet sand the top and edging as it was still in my dining room. Dry sanding makes a HUGE mess, but leaves a great finished product. I wanted to avoid the black dust on the dining room floor. Soon as I started wet sanding, the paint started pulling up instantly. (ahhhh crap) This was one of the few times that I should have listened to my instinct and done a light sand. The top was clean, but had a really laminated finish on top. It just didn't adhere. So I repainted that spot and then went ahead a dry sanded the ENTIRE table. Then it took me an hour to clean the ENTIRE floor. 
Soon as I started to apply the Endurance to the top, it started to bubble in certain spots. (great! just what I needed)

I did a light dry sand over the entire top again and smoothed out the bubbles, and applied my third and fourth coat on Endurance.....then the bubbles CAME BACK! (not kidding about turning it into fire wood at this point)

Then finally at 10:00 last night, after kids went to bed, I set to using the last bit of Endurance on the apron and legs of the table. When I turned the can I noticed a thick "sludge" at the bottom. It was too thick to even stir evenly into the product with my brush. I needed a spoon. Once mixed, I started to apply it and noticed it just wasn't applying smoothly. As it dried, I noticed it took on a gray chalky appearance. (awesome...just great)

So, after 2 FULL cans of Beckley Coal, and one entire can of Endurance Finish I am debating setting this jerk of a project on fire in the back yard. I am SO OVER this entire thing that I can't even muster up enough steam to want to finish the stupid thing....... to Spruce I go today to pick up another can of Endurance, which I will thoroughly stir, not "swirl in the can" as suggested in the instructions.
This is not a reflection of the paint or the product. The Endurance on the table top is AMAZING. I am really impressed with the sealing properties of this product...I am less impressed at ignoring my internal voice that told me not to half-ass the table.
On a bright note, there is no problem with the chairs and although time consuming, turned out BEAUTIFUL. Thank fully...maybe I'll spare the four I have completed from the fire and only burn the four half finished ones....maybe?
I will keep you posted as I attempt to finish this project by the end of summer!
Thanks for enduring my rant, and hope you learned something from my error. :)

Monday, 29 July 2013

Sunshine and Chevron

So my hubby stumbled upon this little gem while working. She was a bit banged up and drab. I wasn't quite sure what she was going to grow up to she sat.
It took me a VERY long time to be struck by inspiration with this one. When it finally hit, it was worth it!!
I decided to try a Chevron Print for the first time. I wanted to step out of my comfort zone and try not only some different color combos, but start trying some new techniques. I'm not going to lie, it was a giant pain in the @#$.......
Once I figured out a system, it went much smoother. However, it was still more difficult than I had anticipated. Mostly because it involved math. Not my favorite!
Once all the stripes were dry, I did a combination of wet and dry sanding to complete the aging process. 

I finished it all off with a coat of Endurance Finish from Ce Ce Caldwell. Because it's a table, I wanted a little stronger finish to prevent any paint chipping or scratching. I LOVE the way the Carolina Sun looked after the sealer was applied.
This little beauty is on her way to my virtual showroom and is available for purchase. 
Thanks so much for popping in! 

Friday, 12 July 2013

The Big Winner!

I have drawn a winner for the FREE PAINT CLASS on Saturday at Spruce Collective. 
I used the random number generator, and here's what was drawn.......
Number 10 on the list is BARB KARK! If Barb is unable to make the class, I have drawn a runner up.
Kristy Wiebe Butterworth you are second in line!

Make sure you stay connected with Refresh on my FB page, and check in on the blog to see all the tips, tricks and newest items posted in my showroom for sale.

For more information about the class, please check out Spruce Collective on Montrose in Abbotsford

Friday, 5 July 2013

July's Big Giveaway

This month, Refresh is working with Spruce Collective to get the word out about Ce Ce Caldwell paint! I will be giving away a FREE SPOT at the next Level One paint class, on July 13. Just Like and Share Refresh at my Facebook page here, and you're entered to win.

This package is a valued at $170.00! 

  • 4 hours of hands on education with Ce Ce Caldwell Chalk & Clay Paint.
  • Take home starter kit
  • 10% off any paint purchase
  •  Lunch is included
Summer is the perfect time to start those projects you've been putting off, and refresh your roost! 
Contest closes Thursday July 11 at 10 pm. Winner will be announced here, on Friday July 12. Check in to see if you'll be enjoying a day in the classroom with me at Spruce! 

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Chesapeake Blue Cabinet

Some of you may or may not know that I do custom painting for people. I'm not just a one trick pony you know! This week I painted a piece for a customer at Spruce Collective. She requested the new Ce Ce Caldwell color, Chesapeake Blue, with minimal distressing. Typically I wet sand to remove the paint, smooth it out, and create a distressed look. However, this piece was a little different. I rarely find a piece of furniture that I need to prime first. Typically if I want a very crisp white over a very dark brown, I will apply one coat of primer, just so I don't use so much paint, and ensure a clean coverage. I never have to apply primer with a colored paint. Two coats usually does the job quite nicely. This time however, for the first time ever, I needed a full three coats. Now, this particular color is a brand new release, so I haven't actually worked with it before. I am unsure if the pigment isn't as strong in this particular color base, or if the furniture has had so many years of furniture polish and oil build up that the surface was just too smooth to adhere to the paint. Either way, it needed a bit more tlc than the average piece that I work with.

The coverage issue was a deciding factor in my choice to dry sand vs wet. In some cases I really like the result of dry sanding. It creates a flawless smooth finish, and removes a small amount of paint where you want to show distressing. At times with wet sanding, if you haven't had the paint adhere as well as you would like, it can wipe right off. I wasn't afraid of it all coming off, but I was afraid of achieving too much distressing. So dry sanding was a good choice in this case.
The downside of a dry sand, is that it make a giant mess. It is very similar to dry wall dust. It sands very easily, but creates a cloud of dust. I looked like a smurf.....
Three coats of paint was a great choice. It covered flawlessly, and had enough base to sand, that it turned out crisp and clean. I sealed it with satin finish instead of wax because dishes would be sliding around on the surface of the shelves, and I wanted it to be more durable for her.
When all was done, I encountered a small dilemma. Because of the three coats of paint and satin finish, the bottom door was dragging on the shelf.  Just when you think you're done....
To solve this problem, the only viable solution is to sand the underside of the door to prevent drag. 
When all was complete, and the glass was cleaned, I must say that the cabinet turned out beautiful. 

I like that this color has the perfect balance of gray and blue. I am looking forward to layering this color with either Vermont Slate or maybe Pittsburgh Gray. I want to capture a masculine feel on my next piece I think. Hubby said there isn't enough "boy furniture"....

Thanks for stopping by! Hope the tips and tricks help you on your next project.

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Special Delivery

On March 20-2013, we welcomed a baby Girl!
8lbs 10oz
23 inches long
8:45 am

Flynn Allyn Edi-Mae made her rapid arrival into the world, 13 days early and in 1hr 42min. Although daddy missed her birth, and was forced to go back to work after only 3 days, arriving home at one month old, I will be honest in saying " I ever glad that's done"! And am I ever happy to have another little girl in our house. After struggling with some food sensitivities, and a very rough first few weeks, we have finally figured out how she works. (we think)...

I am not one to sit still, and being as ill as I was during my pregnancy...and having a very unhappy newborn...I finally feel ready to jump (or crawl) back into my life. Although I won't be blogging very often, or working nearly as much as I was, I promise that I will do my best to keep you in the loop of what I'm working on and offer up as many tips and tricks as I can along the way. 

They say that if you can find a job you love, you'll never have to work a day in your life. Well, I LOVE and thrive from being creative. This is my passion, and my joy (besides my family of course).  I have been blessed with everything I have ever wanted, and sometimes it truly takes a pause in life to make you see that. Flynn has arrived in our family as though she has always been here, and belonged. I am overjoyed at her arrival, and I look so forward to being able to be with her everyday, while I also get to paint and create. Life couldn't get any better! 
 Thanks so much for checking in! 
We are so thrilled to share our news