Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Insanity and Armoires!

Armoire before its state of undress - papered in old 
French pages from an 1800's book.

Today, hopefully, the flooring guys will arrive. They just called to say they have to finish yesterday's installation first so won't show here up until noon! It's a dry, cool day, OK for hefting furniture outside, perhaps even sitting in the gazebo and doing something constructive while they work.............I could fill in the new waiting (for two years!) address book, start on Christmas cards, catch up on back magazines, or even blog.........anything will be better than sitting here inside looking at my now totally empty of decoration home! But actually in a way I like it this way too. It's a clean slate awaiting lovely floors, followed by a good deep clean, and then the decorative layer can be reinstalled in a fresh way.....and soon the holiday decorations added. Like moving but not moving...........I haven't moved in so long I've forgotten what that's like, but hope I never have to do it again. 

So, after yesterday's packing up everything - and let me tell you 'everything' was a awful lot of stuff - what did I decide to do at noon?  Well, with the old pine armoire emptied of shelves, books, china, glassware, ancient bottles of things we no longer imbibe in, more glasses, and what appeared to be 50 lbs. of English tea stashed in case I never get back there, which is highly unlikely...............I painted.

The pine armoire. Love it, hate the color. 
As you can see we have stained woodwork - Bob's 'baby' 
which I've agreed to let him love forever as long as I 
have carte blanche with everything else!

The lovely can of Annie Sloane's Chalk Paint in Paris Grey was hiding in the corner on that lower shelf - it has been waiting there for well over a year. With sliders it was so easy to move this behemoth away from the walls and make the most of the day. Another plus, a huge one for me, my arms and hands are still pain-free due to the recent shots, so everything was in perfect alignment for the makeover. Bob thought I'd lost my marbles starting a big job the day prior to putting in floors - I thought it the perfect time as it didn't matter if I dripped paint on the carpet, hey I could even trip over the entire can and IT WOULD NOT MATTER! I could even drink red wine and spill it if I wanted.......of course I didn't do that but was tempted later!

On the way to loveliness.  Second coat applied and not quite dry so looks a bit blotchy. I do not want a rustic look or a factory finish paint job, more a full coverage (and how well ASCP covers) which I have lightly distressed to simulate wear and patina on the edges.......it's getting there.

Paint still drying last evening - I put another light coat on upper doors after sanding a few paint drips. This morning it looks fabulous and I'll be sealing and finishing with Annie Sloane's clear wax in a few days time when I can put my lamps back in the room for more light - we have no sun in this room as it faces north into the back garden.

What do you think? I know many of you do not paint your natural or stained wood pieces which is fine......I will probably never paint my pine farm table. As my cottage is small and needs a lighter look, my larger pieces are now just about all painted and my upholstered furniture slip-covered in cream or white. I do not really do 'shabby chic' any longer, more an eclectic mix of French/Nordic. 

OK I'm off now...........hopefully when I return here I will have more to show you and will be jumping with joy ON my 'farmhouse floors'. Keep your fingers crossed please.


  1. It sits in that corner much nicer doesn't it against those horizontal timber features (skirting board & furniture board above it) on the wall. I like the newspaper lining in the armoire. I think pine is fine to paint. I have a pine bookcase I painted many many years ago, and have been itching to paint again in a crazy poppy red colour ~ but this grey chalk paint look might be a more sensible choice. Your armoire has given me another idea about converting a mahogany TV cabinet with shelving. Hmm ideas ideas. I am sure those floors are going to be spectacular!

  2. I love, love what you did with the armoire. Beautiful! There are things I would paint in my house, but you know who would not be happy. I am still debating about painting the brick on my fireplace white, but now for some reason I am liking the black. Moving does help us get things cleaned up and fresh. I had to laugh at your comments on spilling on the carpet. Just for the fun of it, I think I would have spilled something or tracked mud on it. I look forward to seeing what magic you make after everything is put back together.

  3. I think it looks just beautiful, Mary. You have given this armoire a new life! I know it must have been a lot of work moving the furniture, not to mention packing up all the smaller items, but you are going to have a wonderful adventure rearranging and setting up everything anew! I'm looking forward to seeing the floors!

    Much love,


  4. Well,I would say you picked the perfect time to get the paint job done. If the flooring wasn't being changed out, you might never have gotten the gumption to do it. :) Good for you! Hope the installation goes well. Tammy

  5. Yes! Yes! Yes!!!!!! It look fabulous painted Mary. I can't wait to see your new floors all installed!!

  6. Yes, yes, YES! It looks refreshed! (And God bless fresh cortisone shots, LOL.)

  7. Dear Mary, I want to grab some of your amazing energy!!!!!!
    The armoire looks great - I've seen lots of Annie Sloane's Chalk Paint on blogs - Paris grey - what could be more perfect?!
    Floors sound fabulous too!
    Just back from a few days boating - no internet on our high seas!

  8. Oh it was time to paint out the armoire, Mary. And I love the new look! It is really beautiful and I know you will have fun re-decorating the living room and the armoire when your floors are in. I can't wait to see the new room! Hugs, Pam

  9. I agree with the light colored furniture. When we moved into this house five years ago we had almost no seating - so we did craigslist and got two brown chairs and a dark brown loveseat. Since then we've changed to two matching pale gold recliners - almost tan - and a white chair where the love seat was. The lighter colors make such a huge difference. I can' wait to see your new floors and new arrangements.

  10. It looks great, it will be wonderful refilling it again and then placing it on your new floors.

  11. Wow, Mary... it looks fabulous!! A wonderful transformation.
    I have read so much about ASCP, but have never tried it. Did you use a primer first?
    I have a golden oak armoire in my bonus room. I tried to donate it last year but it was too bulky to come down the stairs without hiring a mover. Maybe it needs a similar transformation.

    1. Kim, NO primer whatsoever for ASCP...............you just wipe off any dust and start brushing it on! It adheres to any surface but must be sealed with wax as the last step. There are chalk paint tutorials online - I liked Cindy's at Simply Reinvented - www.simplyreinvented.com
      We just donated some big heavy items from upstairs - a gentleman from a church came with helpers to get them down the stairs - no charge, and they were happy as were we!
      Thanks for the kind comments.

    2. Thanks for answering, Mary.
      Well no wonder it is so popular. No primer... that's great. I will check out the tutorial.

  12. Loooooove, love, love!! Looks wonderful dear! Miss you much! Love, Vanessa


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