As I shared last week, or was it the week before? I don’t know, time flies so quickly these days it feels like the weeks all blend together.
Anyway, as I shared, I decided to take this bench back to the drawing board.
It started out as a bed, then it became a bench, and then it sat unsold for about 9 months.
I decided it was either the color, the transfer, or the price. But I reduced the price and it still didn’t go. Let me take a moment to reflect on that. In all of my years of selling furniture I have found that lowering the price on a piece that isn’t selling almost never makes a difference. My prices tend to be on the lower side anyway, so if a piece isn’t selling it’s not usually because of the price. That being said, I do charge more for these benches because I pay Ken for the materials and for his time to turn them from beds into benches. So I tried lowering the price, and still, no sale.
Ken thought the problem was those posts sticking up above the seat level on the front corners though. Those has always bugged him, and he really wanted the chance to try something different. So he brought it back to his workshop and cut the posts off the front corners, tapered the remaining top of each post to make it look more natural, and then replaced those two outer boards on the seat.
I do prefer this look over the old one, it’s definitely a little less fussy.
Next up I sanded off the transfer.
Today’s q tip: when removing a transfer from something, you do have to fully remove it before painting over it. Otherwise you will see an outline through your new paint. I have found that the quickest solution is to put an 80 grit paper on my orbital sander and go to town on it. I have tried using mineral spirits and that didn’t work for me. After lots of elbow grease with a 3M scrubby pad saturated in mineral spirits, it still didn’t remove the transfer fully.
So, I sanded the transfer off, wiped away any dust and gave the bench a coat of Dixie Belle’s Midnight Sky. I had decided to just go back to basic black, which I know sells well. And you know what? I can’t really say why, but black just wasn’t working on this piece. So once again, I decided to pivot (because that’s the trendy thing to do now). I pulled out the Dixie Belle Drop Cloth and covered up that black.
The warm, almost creamy but not quite, off white shade of Drop Cloth just really does it for me.
The bench felt a little too plain without anything on that big framed rectangle on the back though, so I decided to add a fairly simple black transfer.
This is a section from a newer re.design with prima transfer called French Specialties.
The top section fit the space perfectly. It went on super easily. I love the ‘Paris 1889’ part in the middle.
It wasn’t until I was applying clear wax over it that I noticed a problem.
Do you see it? Let me give you a minute. I sort of gave it away in my blog post title.
Yeah. It says the same thing three times over. Top curved line, and bottom two lines. Cakes and pastries, cakes and pastries, cakes and pastries. What the what? Not that I don’t love cakes and pastries, and I’d be OK with the top curved line, and just one of the bottom lines. But those two bottom lines did me in.
All I can think is that because the wording is French, I just simply didn’t take the time to ‘read’ the transfer. I was too busy looking at the overall layout, admiring the fonts, thinking the scale of the design was perfect for my piece. And frankly, assuming that the wording was vetted by re.design with prima.
Once you’ve seen it, you can’t un-see it, am I right? Or maybe it’s just me. Am I too particular? Are any of you not bothered by the repetitive lines?
Since I’d already waxed over it, the process of removing just one of the bottom two lines becomes much more complicated. If only I’d noticed before waxing. I could have sanded one line off, touched up the paint, and moved on. But with wax on it, and because those lines are fairly close together, I’m not sure I can successfully sand off that section and blend the touch up paint into the waxed areas that remain without damaging the rest of the transfer.
So tell me, what are your thoughts on this?
Would you …
a. List it for sale as is because it’s just not that big of a deal and only neurotic perfectionists like myself are going to notice.
b. Try to remove one of those cakes and pastries lines from the bottom by sanding and hope that you can blend the repair seamlessly.
c. Shove this bench in the corner for 30 days while the wax cures and hope that you can paint over one of those lines without sanding (see q tip above before choosing this option!).
Leave me a comment and let me know what you would do!