Friday, May 27, 2011

Cottage-Style Dresser Chalk Paint Makeover

My original chalk painted dresser was intended for use in my new Richmond bedroom.  My daughter loved it so much that we went out in search of something similar for her room. In our very first stop at our local Goodwill, she and I came across this cottage-style dresser.  Not the French-Provincial we'd had in mind, but for $15, this was a deal we could not pass up!

The drawers were bigger than the French dresser, so I decided that I would keep this one for me and my daughter could have the first one she had been admiring.

Since I had chosen the paint color based on my bedroom, I decided this new dresser would also be Annie Sloan's Paris Gray.  And, as luck would have it, I still had plenty paint left from the quart I had purchased.

The drawers drying in the sun.
Waxing the paint after it dried. The color darkens slightly after waxing.
Sanding a little after waxing brings a nice texture from the brush strokes.

The knobs I purchased at Hobby Lobby were a little too long,
so I enlisted Hubs to trim them.
I did just a little distressing along the leaf pattern.
Here is the finished product!
The knobs I purchased at Hobby Lobby.
I chose one with a leaf pattern to match the dresser's original detail.
...and mixed it up with a flower ceramic knob.
Kind of digging it, if I do say so myself!

Have you used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint?  What tips do you have for our readers?

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

We've Been Featured + A Visit With Robyn Story

We are thrilled to announce our latest feature!  Our Annie Sloan Chalk Painted Dresser was featured at DIY By Design's "Swing Into Spring Party" this week.

Speaking of Annie Sloan Chalk Paints...

We were having our very last "Tampa Bay" based AquaSeventy6 "business brunch" yesterday morning (Autumn is in town from Nashville, and Yvette will be relocating to Richmond, VA next week) when we decided to check out our local Annie Sloan Stockist, Robyn Story Designs and Boutique.

Besides all of the amazing finds at Robyn Story Designs, the customer service (by Robyn herself) could not be beat.  Robyn's Annie Sloan Paint room took our breath away.  She had pieces painted in countless Annie Sloan colors and techniques.  We almost cried when we entered her workshop studio and saw pieces being transformed right in front of our eyes.  OK, so we (Yvette) are being a little melodramatic today.  It's our dream, what can we say??

We each left with a bag full of goodies and couldn't be happier with our experience at Robyn Story Designs and Boutique.

Autumn, Robyn and Yvette


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Christmas in May?

It must be Christmas in May because I am on a roll with the gift making!


A sweet friend of mine has started taking yoga and so of course, I had to make her a yoga bag! I heart yoga so much and dream of the day when I can get there more often. Until then I am happy to create these handy bags to keep a yoga mat snug.


Although this friend (OK fine! It's Holly!) could make one of these herself, I still wanted her to have something special from me. She is one of the most giving and thoughtful people I know and she deserves 100 yoga bags!

When I get back from vacation I will be making some more of these yoga bags and listing them in the shop ($20). Use the email button on the side if you are interested in one and want to see some fabrics for a custom order.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Two Gifts and Preview

I love a good parade. On Saturday, the rodeo parade came right in front of our house! (Would have been nice if I took a picture.) It was the perfect way to kick-off my weekend. The weather was dreary all weekend, which was the perfect excuse to catch-up on some gifts and an order.

I had an image of this wall hanging in my mind for a while. As you know, my Aqua Seventy6 partner in crime, Yvette, has a daughter who is preparing to decorate her new bedroom. I wanted to make her something special because "J" is one remarkable young lady! I chose the latin "Alis Volat Propiis" which means, "She flies with her own wings." Perfect for this amazing gal!


This week is the last day of school for my boys. I needed some gifts for their teacher - and one that would not break the bank. I decided to shrink down the pattern for my camera case and make a little lipstick pouch. Of course, I bought a few cute glosses to toss inside  - cause girlfriend likes a good shellacked kisser! I hope they enjoy!

I love making things for other people. I truly do think of them the whole time I am working and try my hardest to send the love! My dear friend, Heather, contacted me with an order and somehow when it was all said and done I had talked her into buying 4 items!


This is what she originally wanted: a summer bag that could travel to the pool, the beach, folk dance festivals and dock watch. That brown fabric on the sides are some serious deep pockets! And as you can see, this bag is so big it can even fit a T-Rex quite comfortably!

Heather couldn't resist the Fun Floral Apron and added that to her order as well. I just couldn't let her get that apron without letting me whip up two adorable coordinating mini-aprons for her two little minis! Her daughters are going to look so cute in these!


Truth be told, both of the girls' aprons are different but I had to leave something to the imagination. SO Heather, you will just have to hold your horses and wait to see what the other apron looks like upon arrival!

PS- Big shout out to my little Easton for modeling! My boy can rock a floral print.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Fun Floral Apron

I am a sucker for an apron. I like to wear them even if I'm not cooking, sort of like a fashion statement.
I made a lot of aprons for Blossom and Poppy and was really inspired by the creative freedom she gave me with her order. So I guess you could say I am on a bit of an apron kick!

I knew after this one was finished I needed to list it to the shop right away or I would keep it for myself!
Doesn't it make you want to cook up something fresh and tasty?

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Monday, May 9, 2011

Cute Little Cosmetic Case

For some time now I have been wanting to play around with a cometic case pattern. I need something sturdy and functional and -duh!- cute!

So a little bit of my Saturday was spent on this.

I am crazy for that burst of bright yellow fabric you see upon unzipping!


This small case could be used as a make up bag, pencil pouch or even a wristlet for on the go.

I will be listing this bag on the shop tonight!


Friday, May 6, 2011

Revamped Dresser Using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint

There is nothing that I love more than finding a beautiful piece of second-hand furniture at a great price.  A few weeks ago while browsing one of my favorite thrift stores I came across a French Provincial-style dresser.  It reminded me so much of the furniture I had as a little girl that I couldn't take my eyes off of it.

In its original state.

The quality wasn't great, mainly particle board and veneer, but it had such a gorgeous shape and details that I knew I had to have it.  But first it had to be in my price range.

Tip: A tip no thrifter can live without is to know when their particular thrift store marks down their furniture.  Many of the bigger chains (Goodwill, Salvation Army) will mark down weekly, or consecutively  after 7, 10 and 18 days.  Look at the date on the ticket and count the number of days.  There is a good chance that it's time to mark the item down, but the employees haven't gotten to it, yet.  If you don't point it out, you will be charged ticketed price.

It turns out that this particular piece was 25% off the ticketed price which was right within my budget!

Because the dresser was of less-than-awesome quality I knew I had to use just the right paint.  I had been eyeing a few blogs (my favorite being Miss Mustard Seed) and I'd learned all about Annie Sloan Chalk Paints.  I search high and low, and found a local Annie Sloan stockist, but they were back-ordered indefinitely.  I decided to order through Southern Institute of Faux Finishing because they had everything I needed in stock and ready to ship.

Three days later I was the proud owner of a quart of Paris Grey Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, a can of Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax, a chalk paint brush and a wax brush.  (Actually it was four days later, the original order accidentally came with Country Grey which was more of a beige and the ladies at  Southern Institute of Faux Finishing over-nighted me the right paint.  I only point it out to show their excellent customer service!)

I was ready to begin the transformation:

Here's the the most beautiful paint color EVER!

Chalk Paint Brush

I took the hardware off of the drawers and started to paint.

It took about 15 minutes for the first (and only) coat to dry. ONE COAT!!

About 25 minutes later the dresser was almost completely painted.

I literally took 15 minutes to wax the entire piece.  EASY PEASY!

Here is the end result.  I just love it!

Annie Sloan paint is great for distressing.  I did a little along the edges.

There was some damage that I decided to feature rather than to fix. 

I kept the original hardware.

I pretty much want to marry this piece.

 Annie Sloan Chalk Paints were a breeze to work with!  I will never use latex paints again.  So, what do you think?  Do you love it as much as we do?   Have you used Annie Sloan Chalk Paints before?  We'd like to know!