Painting furniture is fun and so easy to do. However, occasionally we can run into a project that can be a little tricky and require an extra step or two.
This dining table was one of those pieces. My plan was to paint it but with the finish on it peeling and easily scratching off, the paint was not going to adhere. Painting over an unstable surface is problematic.
If you happen to have a project with the paint or finish peeling off, don’t worry, I have some great tips to help you make your project a success. Here are the steps to take and materials to use if you are working with a tricky piece.
The first step is to remove the finish (paint or topcoat). Use your favourite furniture stripper, wear gloves, grab your spatula and follow the product instructions. Once you have removed the unstable surface use a damp shop rag to remove any of the residue from the stripper.
Once dry, use your hand sander to remove any residue that may have been missed and to give your surface a smooth feel. The goal is to remove the unstable finish. Use a damp shop rag to remove any dust and let it dry.
With the original surface now removed, it’s time to start over. Since the table was laminate I used Slick Stick first over the whole table top to help the paint adhere. After 2 hours, I applied another coat and left it to dry overnight.
I was cautious about the possibility of bleed through (the tannins in the wood causing brown or yellow spots in your painted surface) coming through the Slick Stick. Since I didn’t have any bleed through, I was able to move onto my next step. If you do notice any bleed through on your furniture stop and apply Boss over your surface before moving on to the next step.
With my surface now properly prepped, I began painting the whole top in Cotton. Once dry I applied another coat and let it dry for approximately 2 hours.
Since this was my dining table I wanted extra durability and used Gator hide over my painted surface. For a seamless finish I used the blue sponge applicator to apply it. After a couple of hours, I applied another coat for more durability. After approximately 21 to 30 days my surface had cured.
I am so happy with how my table turned out. It has been transformed from a peeling and worn tabletop to a crisp, clean surface with a durable finish that won’t peel or scratch off.
Every so often we can run into tricky pieces like this table. Following these steps and using these materials will help you salvage your piece and create something beautiful and long lasting. Happy painting!
The leaves have started to change colour, the nights are getting cooler, fall is finally here! It’s time to start thinking about bringing some fall inspired thrifted finds into our homes. I love hitting my local Salvation Army thrift store whenever I am looking for unique and fun items. Check out what I found on my latest trip and thrift haul to get you inspired.
Everyone needs a favourite mug. Whether you are a coffee or tea drinker, this fun coffee mug will help get you ready for early morning wake ups.
Cozy Craft Corner
Looking to pick up a new hobby or need materials for a crafty idea? Thrifting is a great option to try out something new or to find inexpensive materials. This paint by number kit would be a fun craft to complete, or pick up some yarn and learn how to knit.
Bring a calming feel into your space with a trio of thrifted candles.
Setting The Dinner Scene
These gorgeous warm yellow West Elm bowls are the perfect way to serve warm pumpkin soups or stews.
This gorgeous moody, bold, floral tablecloth is right on trend and would be a beautiful contrast against the yellow bowls or other autumn inspired colours.
Fall Flower Power
Creating a fall flower arrangement is so easy to do. A thrifted vase, a bunch of grocery store flowers and this thrifted gold artificial arrangement is all you need to make a beautiful arrangement.
Make a colourful impact on your front door with a thrifted autumn wreath.
Make sure to head to your local thrift store to get fall ready with some great finds. Happy thrifting!
Creative inspiration can come from anywhere. I was stuck on where to go with this outdated side table, but after watching “Motel Makeover” a series on Netflix documenting a motel renovation, I was so inspired. I knew exactly how to transform this table. The vintage 70’s feel, the warm tones of the corals, terracotta and rusty reds, reminiscent of late summer sunset that they used in the Motel Makeover's colour palette, was the perfect vibe for this table.
Here is what you need and how to create this warm, fun, vintage feel for your next project.
Give your furniture a quick prep. Use White Lightning to remove any grease or residue, give it a scuff sand with 220 sandpaper and wipe off with a damp shop rag.
Use Dixie Belle Mud and a spatula to fill in any holes or damage. Let dry it completely and sand to a smooth finish.
Since my surface is laminate and very shiny, I applied a coat of Slick Stick to the whole surface to help the paint adhere. After 2 hours, I applied another coat and then let it dry overnight.
I wanted to replicate an abstract, curvy, vintage 70’s design on the table top. I used an image I found online for inspiration and as my guide to free hand my design on my table top. I used a pencil to create my design over the whole table top, making sure to give it a flowy look.
Pro tip- Don’t be afraid to try out a free hand design. Abstract art does not have to be perfect. Keep an eraser on hand in case you feel the need to change your design and have fun.
To replicate the colours of a late summer sunset, I used a fine artist brush to apply paint colours in Lemonade, Terracotta, Apricot, Flamingo and Rusty Nail on each of the curves. I continued this sequence of colours until the tabletop was completely painted. Once dry, I applied another coat of each colour and painted the base of the table in Saltwater.
I sanded the top of my table to give it a smooth finish, wiped off the residue and used the blue sponge to apply a coat of Glossy Clear Coat. Once dry, I applied another coat of Clear Coat and let it dry.
I love how this end table turned out! The curvy, 70’s vintage feel, and the combination of warm corals, rusty red and soft yellow is reminiscent of late summer sunset. This is a fun way to try out freehanding a design. Happy painting!
Please note these are affiliate links.
Thanksgiving is just around the corner and it’s time to add a little fall flair to your decor! I was so inspired by Dixie Belle's gorgeous new fall colours and had the perfect DIY to use them in. Here is how you can use these rich colours and transfers to create a fall centerpiece.
Clean the pumpkins with White Lightning to remove any oil and grease. Wipe off with a damp rag and let dry.
Since the surface is slick, apply a coat of Slick Stick to your pumpkins. Let it dry for 2 hours and then apply another coat. Let the Slick Stick dry overnight.
Paint each pumpkin in one of Suzanne’s fall colours- Cashmere, Juniper, Merlot, Latte and Pumpkin Spice. To get the best result, after approximately 30 to 45 minutes apply another coat of paint to each pumpkin to get a highly saturated colour. Let the paint dry overnight.
I love the Alice transfer and cut out a few small transfers to add more detail. Working with one pumpkin at a time, I pulled back the white backing and placed the adhesive side down. Rub it in place with your hand and then burnish it with the applicator. Gently pull back the adhesive, leaving the image on the surface of the pumpkin. Use your finger to gently rub the transfer into place.
Now find a spot on your dining room table or on a mantel and create a grouping or fall centerpiece. Here are a few ideas to get you inspired. Happy crafting!
An organic fall feel
A modern take
I love trying out new products and was thrilled when Dixie Belle released their new Silkscreen Stencils from their Belles & Whistles line. Silkscreen stencils are a great addition to your DIY project. They are easy to use, adding visual interest to your project. Each package contains three 8" x 10" sheets with 7 design styles to choose from.
They are so easy to work with, they have an adhesive backing so no tape is needed when securing it in place. The silkscreen creates a crisp, clean, highly detailed stenciled image, without the worry of your paint bleeding through your stencil. Silkscreen stencils can be used with paint, gel mousse or gilding waxes on surfaces like furniture, decor and even fabric. They can be reused up to 8 to 10 times. Here is how I used the Silkscreen stencil and transfer to transform a thrifted pitcher and bowl into farmhouse decor. Here is what you need and how to use it.
I started by cleaning the pitcher and the bowl with white lightning, wiped with a damp rag and let it dry.
Since the surface of the pitcher and the bowl were very slick, I applied Slick Stick to help the paint adhere. I painted both pieces and left it dry for 2 hours. Once dried, I added another coat and left it to dry overnight.
Using my synthetic brush, I painted one coat of Fluff on both the pitcher and the bowl. After about 30- 45 minutes, I applied another coat of Fluff and let it dry.
My plan was to place the silkscreen in the middle of the bowl. I started by peeling off the white backing of the stencil and placed it aside. I put the stencil in the middle of the bowl and made sure to press it firmly to help it adhere to the surface. I placed a small amount of paint on a paper plate and used the Thing.a.mig.jig to evenly spread the paint over the entire stencil. For best results, make sure that you place your Thing.a.mig.jig at a 45 degree angle. Wipe off any excess paint with the Thing.a.mig.jig.
I carefully remove the stencil while the paint is still wet. Then let it dry. Once you're done, clean your stencil with soap and water to remove the paint and allow it to dry, adhesive side up. Once dry, place your stencil back on the white backing.
I decided to add a small furniture transfer to the pitcher. I cut out a small transfer to go in the middle of the pitcher. I placed the adhesive side down and rubbed it into place with my hand. Once it was secured in place, I burnished it with the applicator. I gently pulled back the transfer paper, leaving the image on the surface. I added some Best Dang Wax in clear to add some sheen and softness to the pitcher and bowl.
That’s it, Silkscreens and transfers are so easy to use. Make sure to try them out on your next project. Happy painting!
Dixie Belle Chalk Mineral paint and Silk All In One Mineral are beautiful paints to use on your DIY projects. You can achieve any style from rustic, to a coastal feel, to a sleek contemporary vibe. It is easy to use and creates a beautiful smooth finish. However, if you find it difficult to get a sleek finish without the brush strokes, I have 3 great tips for you to help.
The type of brush you use will have a big impact on your paint finish. Synthetic and natural bristle brushes are two commonly used brushes in furniture refinishing. A natural bristle brush will give lots of texture. It’s a great option for rustic finishes but not when trying to avoid brushstrokes.
Use a synthetic brush, the soft bristles will leave a smooth finish without any brushstrokes.
It’s also important to ensure that you are using good quality synthetic brushes. Inexpensive brushes can be coarse, causing lots of brushstrokes. Good quality synthetic brushes will last longer, are more absorbent, hold more paint, and are a dream to use to give an even finish. Here are some of my favourite Dixie Belle brushes to use.
Dixie Belle Paint Synthetic Brushes
2. Paint Application
How you apply your paint onto a surface can really affect your paint finish. If you are applying your paint in several directions on a surface you will create texture and brushstrokes. Additionally, painting in small sections on a large surface like the top of a long dresser will show very clearly where you (started and finished your paint strokes) stopped and where you started painting.
To minimize brush strokes, apply your paint in long even back and forth strokes over the length of your piece, and not the width. When using Dixie Belle Chalk Mineral paint use a Continuous Spray Mister to help smooth out your paint. The Mister will help the paint move more freely while giving you a seamless finish. When applying Silk All In One Mineral paint make sure that you have enough paint on your brush to get to the opposite end of your surface from where you started. Do a final finishing stroke to smooth it out before moving on to the next section.
3.Relax & Don’t Overwork it!
One of the biggest culprits of getting brushstrokes in your finish is overworking the paint. Going back over a spot that is almost dry will cause texture. This can be really frustrating, as the more you try to "fix it" the worse it gets. Here are a few ways to deal with this.
Remember the great thing about painting furniture with quality products like Dixie Belle paint is that mishaps can be easily fixed. Have fun and happy painting!
Using a mirror in your home is a great solution to reflect more light in a dark space. It can give a small space the illusion of being bigger, and can create a beautiful focal point. That is why I was so excited when I found this wooden mirror at my local thrift shop. It was very tired looking and outdated but I knew that it could be easily transformed into more of a modern, industrial feel with some paint.
Do you find painting a mirror a little daunting? You may feel that painting a mirror may be too much work with having to carefully place painter's tape between the frame and the mirror, trying to avoid getting paint on your mirror. I will show you how you can easily paint a mirror without the hassle of using tape or worrying about getting paint on the mirror. Here is what you need and how you can paint your mirror for your next DIY project.
Always start your project off on the right foot and make sure to prep first. I used White Lightning to remove dirt and residue, gave the wood a quick scuff sand with a sanding pad and wiped off residue with a damp rag.
I used Silk All In One Mineral paint since it goes on smooth and does not require a topcoat. Using a smaller round 1" brush offers more control while cutting in tight areas. I gave the paint a good shake and began applying paint to the mirror.
To help avoid getting paint on the mirror, use a piece of paper and slide it between the mirror and frame.
If you get paint on the mirror, just use a damp cloth to wipe it off while it’s still wet. It will come off easily.
Apply the paint in long strokes to avoid any brushstrokes.
Pro tip- when painting pieces with lots of molding and corners, make sure to check for paint pooling every so often, and before moving on to your next section.
Continue painting until your mirror has one coat.
Once your paint is dry (approximately 2 hours) add another coat of paint. Be sure to follow steps outlined in step 2 to help avoid brushstrokes and paint pooling in the corners. It will take another 2 hours to dry, and 30 days to fully cure to a durable finish.
This orangey, outdated mirror has been easily transformed into a sleek, contemporary, industrial statement piece that has brightened up my stairwell landing. So put aside the painter’s tape and try out these great tips on your next DIY project. Happy painting!
Please note these are affiliate links
With summer winding down, it’s time to start getting ready to head back to school. Whether you are heading to a new apartment, dorm room or need to create a workspace in your home, thrifting is an inexpensive way to furnish and decorate your space. Here are some great finds from my local Salvation Army to inspire you!
This black faux leather office chair is on trend and will keep you extra comfortable while working on your assignments.
Make a statement by bringing in large scale artwork into your space.
Need a quick pick me up the next morning after a late night study session? Get the day started off right with the perfect coffee mug.
You don’t have to be an art major to add this wooden mannequin to your decor. Place it on your desk or bookshelf for a bit of whimsy.
Thrift stores always have a great selection of furniture. If it needs an update, you can easily paint it in a fun colour with one of the many furniture paint brands on the market.
Thrifting for dishware is a great way to find colourful and unique dishes.
Ride to class in style with a thrifted cruiser!
There are so many great finds to help you get ready for school. Head to your local Salvation Army thrift store to see what you can find. Happy thrifting!
📣Big announcement time! 📣 When I started my new life as a DIY coach and decor expert, I'd never have known how my life and my calling would evolve. I started this journey by opening my shop--Bluebird Upcycle--and I thought that was going to be the core of my work. At Bluebird, we have sold you the paint and tools to DIY your treasures for years now. Bluebird gave me the chance to showcase my skills and learn new ones. But what I didn't expect was that slowly, my work became less about the paint and more about sharing knowledge and expertise.
For months now, my team knew that the shop was becoming less important than the other work I do--that's why I launched Erin Rochon Design. Under my new brand, I have been guest-blogging on DIY sites, television, and in magazines. I have been busy with interior decor consultations. I've expanded my focus well beyond paint.
So we've made the exciting and bittersweet decision that it is time to say goodbye to the Bluebird Upcycle shop. As of September 30th, I'll be closing the doors on Bluebird, and focusing 110% on Erin Rochon Design. Erin Rochon Design will offer more content, workshops, consultations, and design planning; we'll be making more videos, articles, and tutorials for everyone. We'll still help you choose and find the best paint and tools for your DIY projects, by referring you to partnering shops and retailers. And as we phase out paint sales, we'll be offering DIY kits of all sorts through my website.
The next 60 days will be full of exciting announcements, workshop dates, new offerings and a big street sale; so click on the link in my bio to my website and join our mailing list to keep informed! Our new website is being built as we speak and we can't wait to share it with you.
Also: expect a big paint sale announcement tomorrow!
August 5, 2021 by Julia Weaver
It’s no secret that our day-to-day life can be overwhelming and hectic, and sometimes it seems that there aren’t enough minutes in the day to get through our to-do lists.
No matter where you live – be it Vancouver, CA, Tucson, AZ, or anywhere in between, life is busy. For some people, bringing inner peace and balance into their everyday life is just wishful thinking. However, small changes over time can make a big difference. Maybe it’s creating a calm and inviting home, spending 10 minutes each morning reading a novel, or dedicating a space in your home to find peace. Here are 9 tried-and-true ways to find inner peace and balance at home – straight from the experts themselves.
Transform your space into your very own meditation studio
Turn your home into a private meditation studio – no pillows, candles, or masks necessary. All you need to do is cast the Unplug Meditation app to your TV using Airplay. With highly curated video-based content on the big screen, you will instantly feel like an expert meditation teacher is inside your home, guiding you to feel peace, presence, and positivity. – Unplug Meditation
Create a warm and inviting environment to find inner peace
It can be hard to relax and let your mind settle if your decor clashes, or even something as simple as having the wrong temperature light bulb. Many people don’t realize that you can get different temperature light bulbs and end up with one space with a variety of tones or just the wrong tone for their intent. To create an environment of peace and comfort, you would want to go with light temperatures around 3200k giving you a warm honey-like tone. If you’re wanting a more sterile and cold feeling, then 5600k would be better. Don’t forget, all the lights in one area should be the same temperature. – Cory Simmon, owner of A Lamp and Fixture Corp.
Give yourself time to have space in your mind and home
When we think of meditation, we may have the idea that we have to carve out hours of time and block out all of our thoughts. And then, when we still think during our meditation, when our mind becomes distracted, or we are not able to sit for hours (or even 40 minutes), we relegate our belief in ourselves as a meditator, that we are a failure. We might view our meditation practice in the same category as trying to clean up our junk drawer. Instead, set up one-minute meditation breaks for yourself. Start training your mind to embrace empty space. Begin with a minute and then extend it to five minutes, and then maybe 10. Recognize that if your mind wanders, that’s okay. Sometimes part of our meditation practice is to allow our mind to wander. Creative thoughts can be part of our meditation practice. You could even sit in a room, allow your gaze to soften, and see everything around you differently. You might recognize where you really want your plants to be, how to arrange your books on your bookshelf or other ideas. – LA Yoga
All you need is a space to call your own
Finding inner peace can be hard when you’re at home with others surrounding you or possibly limited space. Here are a few of our best tips to help create inner peace and comfort at home. Find a location or spot in your house that is just for you (it can even be your closet) and clear space so that you have room to lay down, sit on a cushion or practice some movement. Find a meditation cushion (or couch pillow), a soothing scented candle or incense to burn when you begin- this will help trigger your body and mind that you are entering your safe and calming space. Commit to 10 minutes a day (if you can) to spend time laying down or seated and just focus on your breath- 3 counts in, 5 counts out or pick a word (peace, calm, acceptance) to repeat as you breathe. Keep the mind on the breath and when it starts to wander, come back to the count. – Buka Yoga
Create a morning ritual that works for you
In the same way that you may turn inward during a yoga or meditation practice, your home can be a place of refuge. We’ve incorporated colors, designs, and decor that make us feel at ease in our space. Our homes are a place to retreat from the outside world. To find inner peace each morning, start the day with an inspirational book and a soothing beverage of your choice. A morning ritual can facilitate calm and peaceful feelings. – Pilgrimage of the Heart Yoga
Set up a reading nook
One of my favorite pastimes is curling up on my couch to a great book with a cup of tea or glass of wine. Globally diverse books have the power to transport us to the beaches of Cape Town, the mountains of the Himalayas, Parisian cafes, and the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea. Set up a reading nook for you and your family with a comfy couch or bean bag complete with fluffy pillows and a cozy throw blanket. Add a snack basket with favorite treats or even a tea station just for you, then fill a small bookshelf or basket with books set in different parts of the world. -Bunmi Emenanjo, founder of Atlas Book Club, a book subscription box company focused on globally diverse children’s books.
Reconnect with everyday objects or sounds
At particular moments during the day, we can choose to give our undivided attention to what we are doing, this can be a great way to reconnect with our bodies and become more mindful. Choose an object or sound with which you come into contact every day. This might be a bunch of keys, a pen, a door handle, or the sound of your phone notifications. Whenever you hear the sound or encounter the object, stop for a moment and reconnect with your body. This involves noticing the breath as it enters the body and taking a moment just to be still. You’ll find inner peace in no time. – MindEasy
Immerse yourself in a book to find inner peace
The best way to find inner peace at home is to immerse yourself in a really good book. Reading is a peaceful activity for every season, whether you’re enjoying your favorite story lounging outdoors in the shade, or curled up by the fireplace. – Tattered Cover Book Store
Relax and unwind with a creative DIY project for your home
Adding creativity into your life is not only a great way to relax, unwind but is also very therapeutic. Find a comfortable spot in your home, try out knitting or embroidery, paint a tired piece of furniture to transform it into a statement piece, or check out Pinterest to find a creative DIY. Once you have created your DIY make sure to find a great place to showcase your creation for your friends and family to see. – Erin Rochon Design