I mentioned in my Dresser Project post, that I had also recently done another furniture painting project..... this time I tried chalk paint for the first time! I've had this corner cabinet since before we were married and since we moved it has resided in the office (see this post for a better view of the room). As time has gone on, I've come to complain about how "inefficient" the cabinet was in displaying things. The wood line down the middle where the doors meet obstructed a good portion of the view, and the reflection off the curved glass didn't help either. As my antique/primitive collection has grown, so has the need to display it. I had a few ideas here.... one was to sell the cabinet as is and then use the money to buy something else that I liked better. I also had a few other shelves around the house that I tried, but since they weren't corner specific (more square or rectangle) they just did not look right. Finally, I decided to revamp it.
My plan was to remove the doors and fill the holes, but leave the bottom doors on. Well, as I got into the project, I decided to leave the bottom doors off too. It seems you can't go to any flea market or antique shop lately without seeing chalk painted furniture, so I decided to try my hand at it. The appeal? No prep work!!! No sanding (which I hate). No priming! So I ran to one of the local shops in Jackson that I knew carried it to make my purchase. Since I always play it safe and do neutrals, I knew I wanted to do something different. I choose "totally teal" and was pleasantly surprised to see the particular line of paint they carried was created and made in Battle Creek when I had previously lived for 12 years! When I looked up the site, I remembered visiting the shop before we moved but was unaware they made and manufactured their own paint. So, I got to painting. I did two coats. There are so many options with chalk paint in regards to finish. For example, you can do a clear wax or a tinted wax. Since I wanted an aged look, I picked a tinted one. In addition to this being my first chalk paint experience, it was also my first experience with any type of furniture wax. You have to work really fast - put it on only a one foot area at a time and then wipe off to your desired look. Here's a good example with the doors (before I decided not to use them) of what it looks like with and without the wax.
When I was waxing the inside of the cabinet, when the shelves were out, I was very critical of thinking that you could totally tell where I stopped and started each wax area - like it looked streaky and bad. But just like the paint, you have to do a few coats of wax to get the look you want and once I had the shelves back in I felt better about how it looked. I LOVE how it turned out and it suits our decorating needs/style so much better!
I knew I wanted the shelf to house my ever growing wheeled animals collection, but I started at the top first. Since I did such a styled display on the other corner cabinet in the room (see post here about that cabinet and the wheeled animals) I knew I wanted something equally as styled here. The two peacock tins I got at The Antique Mercantile, where we've had our booth space. I swear, every time I go in there to work on our booth, I find something to buy! But, I love supporting the business where I sell at, and the other booth vendors. Everything else I already had.
Once I had the top complete, simply placing the animals on each shelf was much too blah. So tried to think of what else I could use to add to the look without taking away from each animal. Empty picture frames and books did the trick! Having a stash of these items around the house really helps in so many ways. You have to think about decorating in "layers" sometimes to make things look like they were meant to be there. Three of these pieces came from The Antique Mercantile too! The bunny, bear and chicken. Although I think I may repaint the bear since he is a bit gaudy. The blessings sign the boys got my for my birthday.
I most definitely would use chalk paint again! In fact, I can see how it could become addictive.