the greyson.

A couple of weeks ago my BFF’s sister texted me to say that she pulled a piece of furniture off the curb in her neighborhood for me (thanks again for thinking of me Laura!).  I’m always a little nervous about ‘free’ stuff, because it usually tends to need a lot of work.  There is often a very good reason why the current owner has kicked it to the curb.

But she then sent me a blurry phone photo and I was intrigued.  I do love a good MCM piece, and this one looked interesting.

Greyson before

Once I got a closer look at it, I could see that originally there would have been sliding doors on that bottom section, as well as a shelf in the top section.  I’m not really sure what the original function of this piece would have been, other than just a book shelf with storage on the bottom.  It does not have a pull out desk top, so you have to rule out desk.  The top part is not deep enough for a phonograph, so you have to rule out record player stand.  Although the bottom section is sized right for album storage.  Any other guesses?

Well, whatever it was, it now is a bookshelf.  I asked Ken to cut a new shelf for it, which was child’s play for him!  He also had to re-attach one of the legs.  No problemo!

greyson blog title

This piece is painted in a color called Greyson from Little Billy Goat.

Unfortunately, this piece had some pretty significant water stains on the inside.  You can see them in the ‘before’ photo.  I painted over them with two coats of Greyson, but those stains were going to just keep bleeding through.  I could have sealed them with some shellac or Tough Coat Sealer, but in the middle of the night a brilliant idea came to me.  Paint the back in Fusion’s new metallic, Brushed Steel.  Eureka!

Greyson corner

It’s a little hard to capture in photos, but I think the Brushed Steel looks amazing at the back of the cupboard.  It works beautifully with the Greyson.  And by the way, I finished the Greyson with my custom mixed dark wax which darkened up the color considerably.

Since I was loving the Brushed Steel so much,  I decided to ‘dip’ the feet in it too!

greyson feet

Oh boy, now you can see just how dirty the floor in the photo cottage is!  Please ignore that!

At first I wasn’t at all sure how I was going to stage this one, but then I pulled out some of my vintage cameras …

greyson cameras

and some vintage suitcases …

greyson suitcases

and they added the perfect touch!

I have to admit, I’m kind of wishing I had a spot for this bookcase myself.  I need a bigger house.

greyson collage

But, I’m not getting a bigger house, so I have to let this one go.  If you are interested, leave me a comment!


17 thoughts on “the greyson.

  1. The dipped legs are a nice touch. This may be one of my favorites, although I think I say that about all of your pieces. I just love that color. What did you mix into your wax?


    1. Thanks Teri! I bought a can of Dark Brown Briwax at a garage sale for $1 (ha!) and I mixed it with clear Johnson’s Paste Wax ($6 per can) because the Briwax on its own is VERY dark. The consistency of the Johnson’s makes it easy to mix with the Briwax. I mix about 1 part Dark Brown Briwax to 3 parts Johnsons. So for a little more than $6 per can, this is a much more budget friendly option than the $30+ versions from MMS, Annie Sloan, etc. I find both of these waxes to be too smelly for indoor use though, so I only use this dark wax when I can work outdoors.


      1. Thanks. I am about to buy MMS clear wax in a 40 oz. tub for $80 with free shipping. I have been trying for months to find a way to buy wax without paying tax and/or shipping. This should do it for awhile, for years hopefully, and I will just mix my own pigments into the wax. I can’t use the cheaper, more available stuff because it gives me headaches. I am such a wimp.

        Unfortunately, I don’t have the experience with MMS wax long term, the way I do with CCC wax. I feel confident selling items sealed with CCC wax because my own experience is that one coat lasts for years and years and years. I am putting a lot of faith in the MMS wax. So far, it gives a beautiful finish.


      2. If you have headache issues, my custom wax mix is definitely NOT for you. Wimp, or no wimp, it needs massive ventilation (a.k.a. outdoors) to be viable. Have you tried the MMS hemp oil? I know it’s not quite as durable as a wax, but I used it on my own buffet (painted in MMS Kitchen Scale) and it has held up extremely well. I actually store my paint supplies inside this buffet in the winter, so I’m in and out of it all the time. I’m constantly piling stuff on top of it too. I also move the piece about once a week in the winter, since it sits in the spot that becomes my photo staging area. So, my point is, it takes a beating. And it still looks great after about 2 years of this. The hemp oil is not quite as water resistant as a wax, so I don’t think I’d use it on a table top, but otherwise I do like it. Another benefit, in my opinion, it’s much easier to apply than a wax. It’s also cheaper. I does have a smell … sort of a green, weedy smell (it is hemp oil, after all). It’s not a chemical smell, more of a natural smell, if that makes sense.


    1. Thanks Kristy! I have to say that the MCM look is really growing on me. I still don’t have any in my own house, and I maybe never will. But I can appreciate it, and love the look of a well done MCM home. I also think using MCM pieces in an industrial loft type space is an awesome combo.


  2. Linda, I do have hemp oil. I use it on wood (usually without stain) when I want a rich wood finish. I did use it once over milk paint on a bookshelf, and I must have needed more than one coat because it got pretty scratched up taking books on and off. The only thing that keeps me from using it regularly is worrying about trying to paint over oil if I want to repaint at some point. Oil stains cause bleed through, so I just wasn’t sure. I should repaint my bookcase to see what happens. Have you ever repainted over anything with hemp oil? Oh, by the way, I used it on my dining room table (4 coats, I think) and it resists water nicely.


    1. I think you’d have to use a good de-greasing type product to remove the oil if you wanted to paint over it again. After all, we use it to force a ‘resist’ with milk paint, so I know milk paint won’t stick to hemp oil. Not really sure about chalk paint.


    1. You think so? I know it’s hard to really judge the size in photos, but it’s rather petite. I think that’s why I didn’t really get a china cabinet vibe from it. But it certainly would make a great china cabinet for a smaller dining room.


  3. I love your site!! We also sell Little Billy Goat Paints, and your site is such an inspiration! Whenever anyone asks me how a color would look, I always refer them to your site. Amazing stuff!


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