Friday, August 7, 2015

Furniture Adventure- Part II

So in my last post I wrote about some thrift store finds, and the process of refinishing the chair that we found. Here is what I did to the trunk !

First I spray painted the trim cream...

Next I taped of the trim to paint the rest of the trunk...

Several coats of paint later(with some light sanding of some drips, and re-spraying of some areas) the tape comes off.

Not too bad, but the paint peeled some from the tape and there was no way to get it completely touched up. In addition the trunk looked a little blah for my taste. So I did some ageing w by dry brushing and rubbing some acrylic paint in strategic places.

As for the inside of the trunk; it was just plywood, and although there was no sign of mold, or rot, it did smell like someone spilled a large bottle of awful perfume in there and than decided to store  candles and potpourri in it... yuck.

  After scrubbing it with hot soapy bleach water (while wearing gloves and in a well ventilated place!) I sealed than sealed the wood with a polycrylic coating.

The next step was to Modge-Podge pages from A Midsummer Nights Dream, and Macbeth. on the inside. 

Following that I did two more coats of varnish, and as a finishing touch, I adhered some vintage luggage labels (I had printed off) on the outside, and added a personalized shipping label.

It turned out to be a much bigger project than I anticipated, but was well worth it!

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Furniture adventure- Part 1

I have always enjoyed watching HGTV. So, the other weekend I was watching some "Flea-market Flip" with my brother. We were chatting about how I needed some furniture for my apartment, and we ended up getting inspired to to some re-finishing of our own!

At the local thrift store we found a kitchen chair with good bones, but a lot of wear, for $3 and a gold metal trunk, that had seen better days, for $10.

Armed with spray paint ( found at the local Menards, much cheaper than the craft store!) along with sand paper and this nifty spray handle (about $3 and well worth it, saving my hand from cramping up!) we got to work. 

I washed down the trunk, and we sanded and the chair.

After two coats of spray paint, the chair already looked so much better!

All that's left is some light sanding, to smooth some rough spots and drips, and add a vintage effect. The chair is done!

Stay Tuned for Part II; where we tackle the trunk!

Thursday, July 16, 2015

"The Legend of the Starving Artist"

     As a college student I am often asked what my major is. When I respond that I am a studio art major, I'm fairly used to less than enthusiastic responses from both my peers and older adults about my chosen field of study.

     When you hear "studio art major" I think the image that commonly appears in peoples heads; is a sleep deprived, starving, poor, recluse living in a tiny decrepit studio apartment and creating disturbing abstract paintings  that look more like a crabby toddler made them than an adult with a hard earned  ( and very expensive,) advanced degree.

     To be honest this is mainly what I thought studying art meant for many years. So, while art has always been a massive part of my life, and one of my favorite things, I was determined not to be a "starving artist." I thought "i'll study design, or a social science or maybe even communication, but never art." Than things began to change, I started hearing more and more from teachers, family friends and other successful adults that getting a degree in Art might not be a terrible idea after all. I heard of, or met, people who taught, were illustrators, worked as designers, owned their own businesses, did consulting, and had non-profits, all of these people had either gotten an art degree, or explained that as long as you are willing to work hard, and be open to the variety of jobs within the visual arts, you can actually make a decent living. I was pretty excited.

    After spending a semester planning on being a social work major, than taking some time off due to health problems, I came back to college determined, with the encouragement of family and former teachers, that It would be an art degree or nothing. I chose a school that had a wonderful department, but was mainly known for agriculture and science. And you know what? Its working out just fine.

    In this day and age, even with the price of schooling and the messed up economy, having a college degree, or at least an AA or attending a tech school is generally a good idea.

   College isn't for everyone, and i'm not exactly your typical art student, but I love creating things and bringing joy to people through art and creativity. Maybe you still think that me, and other students like me are crazy, but hopefully this gives a little insight to how being a studio art major, might actually be a wise choice for some students, and that maybe we won't all be starving artists after all!