french farmhouse chippy.

That title sounds like some sort of rural floozy from Provence, although apparently the spelling should then be “chippie” (and if you don’t understand what I mean, look it up).  But in this case it’s this fabulous dresser.

french farmhouse corner

I started with this dresser that I purchased via craigslist.

tall dresser before

As usual, it looks great in the photo, but it had some flaws.  For one thing, the top was falling off.  Ken waved his magic wand and fixed her right up.  The finish was not in terrible condition, but there were some water rings on the top.  The main flaw, in my opinion, was that someone had put a rather shiny poly on it.  I am not a fan of shiny.

But shiny can work in your favor sometimes with milk paint.  In this case, I was able to get the absolutely perfect amount of crackling and chipping thanks to that previous finish.

french farmhouse close up

So, what do you think of the green?  I’ll admit, I wasn’t sure at first.  This is the same Sweet Pickins’ In a Pickle that I used on the farmhouse table.  At first I thought it might be just a bit too bold for a dresser and that it might have an adverse effect on my ability to sell it.  I seriously considered putting white over it and letting just some of the green peek through.  But then I thought to hell with it!  I love it.  If no one else loves it, too bad.  If it doesn’t sell, I’ll just keep it myself!

french farmhouse side view

This time I used my custom mixed dark wax (a mix of Johnson’s paste wax and dark brown Briwax) instead of the Miss Mustard Seed furniture wax.  That deepened the green a bit and helped bring out those fabulous crackles.

french farmhouse chippy

I used a new trick to get more chipping; tape.  After my paint had dried for about 24 hours, I pressed some blue painters tape along the edges of each drawer and then ripped it away pulling some of the paint with it.  It worked beautifully.  Maybe this piece would have chipped anyway once I vacuumed it, but it’s hard to say.  I recommend trying the tape thing yourself.

You can see that I switched out the knobs for glass.  I just felt like they brought out the vintage farmhouse look I was going for.

Why am I calling this a french farmhouse dresser?  Well, not because I know what kind of furniture they have in french farmhouses, but because I added a french stencil from Maison de Stencils to what I feel is a very farmhouse style piece.

french farmhouse title

Plus, I looked it up and the Pas-de-Calais region of France has 2,000,000 acres of farmland (Wikipedia said so).  So really, this stencil is very apropos for a french farmhouse dresser.

I’m a little disappointed that my stencil looks fuzzy in all of these photos.  It really isn’t fuzzy in person, but I continue to have problems with my photos looking fuzzy on WordPress.  You’ll just have to trust me when I say it isn’t this fuzzy.  Or, better yet, come and see it yourself at the grand opening event for Eye Candy ReFind in Hastings.

french farmhouse stencil details

My vintage “Young Folks History of France” book was the perfect shade of green for staging this piece, along with my grandmother’s green depression glass canister.

french farmhouse styling

So what do you think?  Are you in or are you out when it comes to green?

french farmhouse longshot

41 thoughts on “french farmhouse chippy.

  1. Absolutely love this green! So much, in fact, that I am writing down the name of the paint and the paint color for a future project! Where did you get the stencil?


    1. That’s awesome! If you click on the words “Maison de Stencils” (in blue) in the post, it will take you right to the site to order the stencil. I should note here that I am not compensated by Maison de Stencils in any way for including this info in my posts, I just do it because I get a lot of requests for the info. Also, a tip for you, they have a lot of sales and promos at Maison de Stencils, so if the stencil is a little expensive for you, keep an eye out for a sale. Currently she is giving $10 off a purchase of $40 or more, so the stencil will be $34.


  2. Green is seriously hot in the design world right now. The chippiness and crackle are perfect on this! The stencils do it for me every single time I simply adore them. I do have a client that I am pretty sure will love this look. She prefers a more yellow green than a blue green. From this photo it appears MMS green (she may have more than one I am thinking of a dresser) is more yellow than the Sweet Pickins. We are working with some shams and bedding any suggestions appreciated.


    1. I did not know that green was hot! I am glad to hear it. As for the greens, Miss Mustard has 3 shades. Boxwood (a darker slightly olive green), Luckett’s (that sort of 50’s kitchen green) and Layla’s Mint (self explanatory). One of the qualities of milk paint it that the pigments can settle while you are painting, and that is especially true of the greens. The yellow pigments will tend to settle to the bottom of your container. Thus I find that these colors can really vary from piece to piece, depending on how well mixed your paint is. Just sayin’.


      1. Aha I forgot to come back and see if you had time to reply. Ok I went and watched a couple of the videos by Marian and she seems to keep stirring the paint a lot as she is painting a piece. Lots of differences between all the types of paints. Maybe not the best for a novice. Thanks for the advice.


  3. I think it looks great. I like the glass knobs on it. It gives it another texture. Some rooms need a pop of color and this would be great for that. Also, I have that same green canister. It belonged it husbands grandmother. It’s in my kitchen filled with her cookie cutters.


    1. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen others use the tape trick, but can’t for the life of me remember who. And to be totally honest, it was sort of a fluke. I taped the stencil in place when I used it, and when that tape pulled off the perfect amount of paint a little light bulb went off in my head. Ding! Serendipity!


  4. Love the color and the stencil really completes it. I like the green better than the blues I think…..keep up the good work!


    1. Thanks Teri. I often forget to use my custom wax combo. It’s a pretty smelly concoction, so I will only use it when I’m working outside. So I was glad I remembered it and pulled it out to use on this one!


  5. I love love love the color! I think it is just perfect! I was glad to read that the MMS paint would work well over “shiney” finishes. I really enjoy your blog!
    Smiles, alice


    1. Well, this is actually Sweet Pickins milk paint, not Miss Mustard Seed … but I think they perform in a similar way. And I should warn you that I did sand the entire piece lightly before I painted, which is why I got a nice amount of chipping. Painting over some shiny finishes may not give you the same result, you may get a lot of chipping. With milk paint I recommend going in with an open mind, you never know what you might get.


  6. I so wish I read this last night. I have a fab dresser I painted in kitchen scale. I must have prepped too much as only the back chipped (alot). I ended up sanding/distressing the front but I wonder if the tape would have worked. But alas I already top coated it. Next time.


    1. I’m not sure if the tape would have worked for you or not, but it would have been interesting to find out. Definitely try it next time and let me know how it goes!


  7. Don’t much like the color green unless it’s foliage or little rectangles of paper with pictures of dead Presidents on them. Can’t ever have enough of either.


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