an experiment.

This summer I picked up another kid-sized chair at the Lowry Hill & East Isles sales.

There it is on the right hand side of this photo …

My original plan was to paint it and put a Christmas stencil on it like the ones I did last year.  But as it turned out, the seat was a bit smaller on this one and I didn’t like the way any of the Christmas stencils fit on it.

Then I ordered some new stencils from an Etsy vendor called Wallcutz, including this one …

honey bee stencil farm fresh honey stencil reusable stencil image 0

I purchased it for another project (which I’ll be sharing soon), but I realized that in addition to being quite adorable, it was also the perfect fit for the chair.

So this past weekend I pulled the chair out of the carriage house.

And one thing that struck me about it was that the finish was in pretty darn good shape.

Normally I would automatically paint a piece like this.  After all, painting furniture is what I do, right?  Also, my experience tells me that painted pieces almost always sell better than unpainted pieces.  At least historically.  That being said, I’m noticing that more and more people are returning to wood finishes instead of paint (which frankly is kind of a bummer for me).

So I thought I’d try a little experiment with this chair.  Rather than painting it, I decided to just add the stencil to the seat leaving the wood finish ‘as is’.  Well, sort of ‘as is’, I did sand the seat lightly to make sure the stencil paint would adhere well.

I used my method for adding a little bit of a shadow to the word ‘honey’.  Basically I stenciled just that word first using Dixie Belle’s Putty, then once dry, I moved the stencil just a hair up and to the right and then stenciled the entire design using DB’s Drop Cloth.

It’s such a simple thing, yet it adds so much depth to the stencil, don’t you think?

Once the paint was dry, I sanded lightly over the seat with 220 grit sand paper to smooth out the surface.  Then I added a coat of clear wax to the entire chair.

I staged my photos with a couple of tiny pieces of ironstone.

As someone who loves both miniature versions of things and ironstone, these are a couple of my favorite things.  Especially that little tureen, it’s only about 4″ tall.

So, now it remains to be seen.  Will this chair sell?  I’ll keep you posted on that.

Or maybe one of you local readers wants to snatch it up?  If so, be sure to check out my ‘available for local sale‘ page.

In the meantime, what do you think?  Do you prefer items that are painted?  Or do you think this chair works ‘as is’?

22 thoughts on “an experiment.

    1. Love the wood – it was in good shape to begin with, so why not just do the stencil. The stencil is adorable, and love the shadowing technique. I think this will sell quick!

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  1. I love how it turned out! What a great trick, too! Maybe, with the trends shifting, you can incorporate a little more of what you’re already doing with mixed pieces. I love the limewash look as well as bleached wood look which both go really well with painted furniture.

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  2. I love both painted, and unpainted if it’s beautiful wood. I have a mixture in my home and I think that chair is adorable!

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  3. I’m a painter too but have found myself drawn to beautiful wood pieces that are in good shape. I’ve actually found myself upset when I’ve seen people paint wood pieces that are in perfect condition (with beautiful wood colors). This chair, I think you made a great choice here with keeping the chair original and adding the stencil. While I love painted pieces, we all need wood accents in our home.

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      1. Very true! I’ve surprised myself by getting upset over things being painted since if it sits still, I’ll usually paint it. lol! I love paint and painted furniture.

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  4. Oh this is so lovely!! I’m loving the wood and paint look and I bet this sells in a flash! The shading is just perfect. Makes me want to try this on something myself. Kudos Miss Q and don’t worry, painted furniture isn’t going anywhere.

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  5. I love the chair Miss Quandie! It’s cute and warm……just that little bit of paint made it better (-; Your experiments will never turn out as Frankenstein monsters so keep it up when you feel like it!

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    1. Well, if I do end up with a Frankenstein I usually have a do-over before sharing it with you guys 😉 In fact, I have one of those coming up in the next couple of weeks.

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