Take a subject you’re familiar with and imagine it as three photos in a sequence. Tackle the subject by describing those three shots.
In the bottom photo is a painted antique kitchen cabinet. What you do with this depends on what you want to happen to it. Do you want to sell it or keep it? If you want to sell it, you may not want to touch it, as the original finish sometimes sells for many more dollars. If you want to sell an item, never paint it. You can touch up with a scratch cover product, maybe run some tongue oil over it to revive the wood, but other wise, leave it alone, and place your mark-up on it and a sale sign, and you won’t have it very long. It will be snapped up!
If you choose to keep the piece that you bought or maybe inherited, and you want it to compliment your living space, and you are pretty sure you will not sell it for a long time, then you may want to consider refinishing it.
Most woods that I have done in my own shop I have hand-finished. Dipping furniture is a lot easier, but it loosens glue, and a lot of glue was used in earlier pieces, so I never dipped furniture.
I bought liquid strippers for the most part, with using a small can of semi-paste gel type of stripper, that holds its shape while doing its job. Hopefully, if you are lucky, there is only one layer of paint on your item. If there are more than one layer, then one layer is what you can take off at a time.
One of my first pieces I bought and refurnished and placed in my store for sale, was a ladder back chair. It was painted heavily with an enamel paint, and I thought, this was going to be a snap, but it wasn’t. The first coat was a snap, but there were ten coats of different paint colors underneath in total, and I had to strip each layer off one at a time, but the reward underneath, was worth all of my work. A hand carved Indian head was carved into the wood. This piece finished was beautiful and brought me bigger dollars than I had thought.
Tools that you may include to refinish any piece of furniture will be cheap paint brushes, all sizes, chinese eating sticks, detail miniature pointed tools, old towels, wash rags, trash bags, sandpaper, sanding stone, drill with sanding attachments, clean soft rags, rubber gloves, metal cans, large,( I used an old horse trough so I could sit section by section inside the bucket in order not to spoil the grass or ground, and to be able to re-use the strippers), water hose, stains, tongue oils,soft scrapers,(plastic), furniture putty. These are the basics, I had a lot of odd pieces I found at sales, and at home, that I used for picking out paint of tiny lines and curves and crevices. Never use anything sharp. There are very few woods that can not be scratched, when softened by the strippers and being wet!
So, you put the stripper on, and you make sure you are in a well ventilated area, better yet outdoors,and always in warm weather. Strippers don’t work in cool weather, and if they do work at all, it takes a lot longer. You let the stripper set according to direction times, and while it is setting you take pointed tools, and with the gel-type stripper on those intricate, detailed areas, you start picking and wiping, removing the paint. When you get most of those small areas done, you can then go ahead and let liquid strippers run over it and keep wiping the paint off.
All of this takes time. You really have to have a love for antique furniture in order to do this type of work. A lot of strippers smell to high heavens, and if you are bare-legged, the back splash can burn, like a mosquito bite on your legs or arms. I never did, but some use face masks to protect the lungs.
After the paint is totally off, the strippers that I have used, can be washed off with clear water. When you see no more paint remaining, dry with a soft cloth, and let sit for 24 hours to dry the wood completely. You will not be drenching the wood, so don’t worry, it will dry nicely and not lose its shape.
When this has all been done, you can put a finish all over the piece. Some come with a luster glaze in them, some are water proofed for drink marks, but what I do if I am especially going to sell the item, is run lemon oil, or tongue oil completely over it.
My favorite pieces to own are completely natural looking, back to what they looked like originally. This is the only type of furniture I sold.
I had my own business for several years. I bought and sold antique furniture, and refinished it for clients wanting work done. I also helped to run auction houses, and sometimes bought antiques to flip in the business only. We all need a quick buck sometimes!
The love of antiques is in my blood, and if a customer came to me once again, I can tell you this, it would stir my blood up to a boil once again, just thinking about the joy I get out of it.
So the pictures above are in three stages, painted cupboard, beginning to strip the piece of furniture, and finally the finished product.
A life has closed one door
Never to look back anymore
Another door has opened wide
The width of this is oh so wide
Mysteries held for all to seek
For those who are sick and very weak
More help is coming for him today
I only have to stand out-of-the-way
The love I have will carry all through
But I can’t help feeling a little blue
I release him into your hands of care
For his care I will open and I will share
Remember he is only on loan
It is always with me that he has grown
He may be six feet tall today
But he’s my baby brother all the way
Take good care of him as I walk out of his door
Don’t let me come back to find him no more.
I love you my brother you have filled my days
But now I realize there are many more ways
To keep you safe and free from harm
I have walked you to the door and let go of your arm.
- Protecting my family is one of my greatest challenges (unknowncystic.wordpress.com)
- Writing Prompt: He Walks To The Front Door (raynasybelle.wordpress.com)
Graduation day, had arrived. No more school for Dahlia. She had passed all of her classes
and was going to be graduating today at seven, along with all the other students. After their delicious breakfast of pancakes, they cleaned up the kitchen, and then Rachel and the ladies started to add ingredients to a bowl, to make the best-ever looking graduation cake that eyes had ever seen.
They were going to be making a white cake with lots of flowers, roses, that would surround the outer edges on the bottom of the cake, and then more roses with leaves and writing on the top of the cake.
While the ladies were busy in the kitchen baking, Drake and Ralph mowed the yard, and did some trimming around the house. They then washed the two cars and swept them out.
The smell coming from the kitchen filled your nostrils of sugar and vanilla. When the guys came in from outdoors, they wanted to help decorate the cake by licking a spoon or maybe dipping a finger in the icing. The ladies laughed, telling them to leave them alone and to leave the kitchen, so they could get their work done. The boys listened, but laughed as they were chased out of the kitchen.
When the cake was finally finished and every rose in its place, they called the men out to look at it. Everyone stood around the table eying the cake and wishing they could have at least a small bite now. Rachel went and grabbed her camera, taking a picture of everyone standing around the cake. This was a proud day for everyone inside this house.
Afterwards, the excitement started to grow as it was getting closer to the big event. The ladies got together and tried on their gowns, and compliments and suggestions were given, then they each slipped on their shoes and their gowns again, seeing how they each looked.
Each of them took turns using the bathroom, grooming themselves for the evening. After showers were done, they did each others hair and make-up. They did final inspections on each other and complimented each other on their looks.
The men didn’t do much while the ladies were getting themselves prettied up. They napped and watched television. They knew better than to try to talk to the ladies while they were in the beauty salon, part of the house.
As there was nothing much to do by this time, they realized that lunch had been skipped, until Ralph went to the kitchen and started rummaging through the cupboards. Rachel followed behind him, and suggested soup and sandwiches, since time was slipping by.
Lunch was made quickly and everyone gathered around to eat, but no one was very hungry from the baking of the cake, where sneaking a lick of frosting happened too much. The meal didn’t last very long, and Rachel volunteered to clean the kitchen up herself, since the ladies were ready for their graduation evening. No one argued with her, and left her to her thoughts, while leaving the kitchen.
Drake and Dahlia drove over and picked up her father. She wanted her father there for the big moment of seeing his only child graduating. Her dad was ready when they arrived and with a little help, they all got back in the car and went back to their home.
At home, there were no more chores to do, the house looked good, the cake was done, the yard looked wonderful, so they spent their free time chatting with each other. Before they knew it, it was time to get ready to go to the school.
They all packed themselves in the two cars, with Ralph driving one and Drake driving the other, and soon the school was in sight, and after parking they all climbed out of the cars and then the students began to hug each other and wish them good luck. The ladies looked themselves over once again, straightening their gowns and getting fly away hairs back in their proper place.
They walked into the doors and the students made their way to the room where they were to wait to be called in to the gym, where graduation was to take place. Drake and his parents went ahead to the gym and found the closest spot they could to the front. Rachel didn’t want to miss taking any photos so she wanted as close as possible.
The gym filled up quickly with many family members and friends. Soon the music started playing in the background, and the principal of the school appeared, and said his welcome speech, and speaking about how proud he was of the graduating students this year. After his speech a lady tapped Rachel on the shoulder asking if she could sit with them, and when Rachel looked up, she saw that it was the dance instructor. Rachel said of course she could sit with them. After being seated, the teacher leaned over and whispered how proud she was of Dahlia and she had been an outstanding student, and she knew she was going to grow much in her career as a dance instructor. Rachel beamed hearing this and said a heart-felt thank you.
The music got louder and the double doors at the back opened, and one by one the students made their way down the aisle and walked up to the stage, lining up one behind the other. The principal came to the podium once again, and giving another speech, then began to call their names one by one handing them their diplomas.
Flashes of lights were going off in every direction. Proud parents and friends were whistling and clapping. This was a huge moment in all of their lives. When the last of the line had accepted their diploma, all the students started clapping and tossing their caps in the air.
It was over, they had graduated and now the gym was full of buzz and laughter as each student was congratulated by friends, families, and teachers. Slowly the gym emptied out and the school became silent as they all went their own directions to celebrate.
Some of the students drove back to Rachel and Drakes home and for the rest of the evening. There was laughter and plenty of good spirits in the house. They had done it, they had worked hard, and it had paid off, graduation day had come, they received their diplomas and now they were ready to experience the world as a graduate.
- Continuing Story Part 42 (terry1954.wordpress.com)
- Sunrise, Garden Birds and Flowers (mybeautfulthings.wordpress.com)
- Dahlias and Gourds (lulumusing.wordpress.com)