Last week I shared with you the story of how my 2-year-old son helped me paint two tables. Here are the “after” pictures along with more detailed information for the painters out there on how to achieve these looks. I used the same basic technique on both tables and got dramatically different results. Isn’t paint amazing? I really like how both tables turned out. I should have Joey help me more often!
TABLE #1: My Grandmother’s Table
I must tell you my grandmother was a decorator. She had a beautiful home and was always changing things around and trying new looks. I did not hesitate to paint her table for one second because I know if she was here, she would have told me to paint it already!
(Although hot pink might not have been her first choice!)
BONUS: They match this pretty lamp that also belonged to my grandmother. I loved this lamp since I was a little girl. The crystals always reminded me of earrings. The lamp had been upstairs in our guest room, but I brought it down to put on the new table.
Once the blue dried, I took a damp sponge and rubbed it all over the legs, spindles and edges of the tabletop to reveal the pink underneath. This technique is called wet distressing.
I don’t try to force the color to come through in any particular spot. I just start rubbing and let the paint reveal itself wherever it wants to peek out. In some places, I rubbed a little too hard and it distressed all the way to the original wood. I decided I kind of liked how the wood looked so I left it alone. You can always come back with more paint if you find you distressed too much.
I originally distressed the tabletop, but decided it had too much pink coming through in big streaks. I didn’t like how it looked so I painted over the tabletop solid blue and left the pink on the other areas.
Now that I have the table and lamp in place, I think my Washington National Airport print needs to move. I have a spot for it on another wall in the living room next to its sister, the Dulles Airport print. I used to work at both airports and my husband used to travel a lot for his job. We spent many hours having coffee at both airports waiting for his flights. I used to joke that if I didn’t work at the airport, I would never see him!
Those were fun times and the artwork makes both of us happy. However, I think a pretty mirror would look better on that wall now. I happen to know a cute little shop up in Leesburg where I’m sure I can find the perfect thing!
TABLE #2: My Saturday Morning Find
I love the fabulously spindly legs on this little table, but the tabletop had some issues such as scratches and a circular mark where someone set down a drink. I could have sanded the scratches smooth. However, I am lazy. And I also like to leave a little bit of character on the furniture I paint, especially on cool vintage pieces like this table. This isn’t a brand-new slicky-smooth table from Ikea. It has lived a full life! I think something can be imperfect and still be beautiful. Just like a lot of people I know!
I started by brushing more navy blue on the legs in random swipes.
My plan was to wet distress like I did with my grandmother’s table.
Joey had other ideas! This is the table he had so much fun painting.
He wanted more blue so I opened a can of turquoise for him and he painted it on the tabletop and legs. I’m really glad I listened to him! Look at how much dimension that second color added when I distressed the legs and edges.
It also made the tabletop swirlier. I’m pretty sure that isn’t a word, but I like to say it. Swirlier! I also like how it looks. There’s so much texture on this tabletop. It somehow simultaneously camouflages the flaws and accentuates them.