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    Coffee Table Color Wash with Luckett's Green Milk Paint

    I picked up this coffee table at a local thrift store, with every intention of refinishing the top in a dark stain, and painting the base in a neutral shade of white. As with many well-laid plans, the end result was nowhere near my starting vision! And, thank goodness. I went waaaaaaay outside of my comfort zone on this one, and....surprise!....I sort of love her. This is how she started {well, sort of}. Why am I so bad at taking Before photos??  So, 3/4 of the photo is how she started. The other 1/4 was step 1 of my mission to refinish the top. It's obviously a veneer top, so I had to be careful not to sand too far down - just enough to remove the beat-up old finish. That also meant she was left with some scars from deep scratches I just couldn't fully remove. We call those Character. 20140421-180943.jpg I was too impatient to sand the whole top before seeing how it would polish up. I ran out to the garage and grabbed my can of Dark Walnut stain. Mixed it up, applied it, and ..... it didn't look anything like Dark Walnut. Turns out, I left it out in the {un-heated} garage all winter, and it'd gone bad. Chad had all of the good cans across town in our workshop. Ugh. 20140421-181000.jpg   Before I jumped to a decision on the top, I thought I'd try a color wash {a paint mixture with high water content, that goes on like a stain} on the base of the table, using some Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint in Luckett's Green that I happened to have in the house from a birdhouse painting project I did the previous week. 20140421-181014.jpg   Hm. Not in love. Maybe with another coat. 20140421-181032.jpg   It's a terrible photo, but nope - still not the look I wanted. So, a complete change of course, I decided to sand down the remaining top, do the color wash on the now raw wood, and a full-color paint on the base. 20140421-181048.jpg   Here she is, after painting and sanding, but before a finishing coat. 20140421-181105.jpg   I did not use a bonding agent on the base, so I got some nice chippyness over the original table finish. Awesome! 20140421-181120.jpg   Here she is, after a top coat of clear furniture wax. Look at how much more the color pops on her base after adding that finishing coat! Perfectly springy and green, feminine and functional. 20140421-181136.jpgLuckett's Green Milk Paint Coffee Table | Carver Junk Company | Recycle. Repurpose. Relove.   Luckett's Green Milk Paint Coffee Table | Carver Junk Company | Recycle. Repurpose. Relove.   This lovely lady still needs a home! Give us a shout if you have the perfect place for her! Have a piece of furniture that needs to be rejuvenated? We offer a few avenues to help: Take a Milk Paint workshop, and learn various techniques for painting your own pieces! Request a quote for custom painting {you supply the piece, we paint it to your vision}. Email info@carverjunkcompany.com with a photo of your existing piece, dimensions and details on what you'd like for it to look like!

    Milk Paint Workshop: Paint Your Own Piece! Before & Afters

    Sunday afternoon's Paint Your Own Piece milk paint workshop was a blast! We turned the store into a workshop space for the afternoon, so we could hang out, shop, chat, and check out already-finished furniture while coats of paint were drying. Here are a few of the awesome before & afters: [caption id="attachment_185" align="aligncenter" width="665"]Small Side Table Before & After - Milk Paint French Enamel and Grain Sack This beauty was previously used as a small table in a bathroom, and her top had seen better days (including those before someone took a pen to her). She first got a stain of curio on top and around the edges, then was topped with a custom mix of French Enamel and Grain Sack Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint! Lightly distressed, she's ready for a new home in an upcoming bedroom remodel![/caption]   [caption id="attachment_184" align="aligncenter" width="665"]Petite Coffee Table Makeover with Miss Mustard Seed's Kitchen Scale Milk Paint We love the vision Gaylene had with this piece - heavy distressing, while leaving the edge detail original (with a nice hemp oil polish, of course). Kitchen Scale is one of our favorite colors, and it complements the original wood finish of this table beautifully! {It does look a bit blue in this photo - but has a touch more turquoise in real life ;) }[/caption] Our Paint Your Own Piece workshops build on the skills learned in the Basics workshop, and you get to see your vision through from beginning to end, on your own piece. More details on upcoming workshops can be found on our Events & Workshops page!

    If only it were as easy as Flea Market Flip. A re-finishing rant.

    A friend, and one of our dealers at Carver Junk, sent me this blog post a few weeks ago. It hit home, and I've been trying to think of a way to post it for our fans/followers/customers to see, without making it seem cranky. While noodling on how to do that, I've also been (completely unrelated) DVR'ing episodes of Flea Market Flip, and catching up on them on Sunday nights. We've had a ton of people ask us if we've ever seen the show, because they "LOVE IT!"

    Well, here's the scoop on Flea Market Flip. It's completely unrealistic, and gives viewers the impression that big repurposing projects can be completed with quality in less than 24 hours with no additional cost beyond the original purchase price {seriously, who is paying for all that paint, and all the people helping the flippers do the work?!}. And unfortunately, it leads some {not all} of those viewers to expect much lower prices than are feasible at stores like Carver Junk Company.
    To illustrate, let's talk about a piece we bought recently, and repainted: A round pedestal table - priced at $40. The price was fair, so we didn't low-ball or negotiate. We drove 20 miles to pick it up. Because the woman selling it wasn't able to help Chad move it, both he and I had to go, costing us both time - it took about an hour there and back.
    I forgot to take a Before photo, so I borrowed this from an online post. It is pretty darn close to the table we bought. {Although the veneer on this one is in better shape; price is also higher}.
    Purchase price:  $40 Gas: $7  {yes, our Jeep stinks for gas mileage, but it's great for hauling our trailer} Time: $40 {we value our time at $20 per hour} Then, when we got there, we found the reason the table was only $40 {which, of course hadn't been shared when we asked the condition} - the veneer was bubbling on both the top and the leaf for the table. Add an extra 30 minutes of veneer-fixing time. Fixing: $10 Once it was prepped {fixing the veneer}, we were ready to paint. We use Milk Paint or homemade chalk paint, both of which require no sanding prior. Woohoo! Time savers! But, what we make up for in time, we lose in cost of paint. It's worth it, trust us. Milk Paint: $18 Wax: $3  {a small portion of a large container used} Sandpaper, brushes, etc:  $3  {brushes are reused, sandpaper is cheap, but let's add something for supplies} Bonding agent: $7  {ensures the paint sticks and doesn't require the sanding prep work} Painting with Milk Paint is actually a time SAVER, because it dries so quickly. We chose a light color, so that meant it required a couple of coats. We'll call it three. Each coat takes about 20 minutes, so we're looking at an hour. Painting Time:  $20 Distressing/Waxing Time: $3  {about 10 minutes} It's done! That's it, right? Well, there is also the rent {and utilities} that we have to pay in order to have a place to showcase the table. Sq Ft Rent for Table:  $25 per month, but we'll assume it sells in one month. It's also possible that it sells in the first day of the sale, and we replace it with something else that sells - this is ideal :) And there are the folks we have to pay to work at the store while we're open. That only adds a small cost to each item, so we won't even add it here - but it's important to note the number of things that go into "selling" furniture! So, what does that total look like? Purchase price:  $40 Gas: $7 Time: $40
    Fixing: $10
    Milk Paint: $18 Wax: $3 Sandpaper, brushes, etc:  $3 Bonding agent: $7 Painting Time:  $20 Distressing/Waxing Time: $3 Sq Ft Rent for Table:  $25This table COST us $176 to buy, paint, and put in the store. We'd likely price this table at $249 {which is determined by a lot of factors like our market, the piece itself, current demand for this type of item, etc.}
    Can you see all the distressed and chippy goodness in this photo? And the finish feels like butter.
    Well, it's apparent that we aren't professional photographers, but here is the finished table, with leaf. It's she a beauty??
    So once we've paid ourselves, the bills, and sold the table, we will have $73 left over to go buy another piece of furniture and start the process all over again. And just for kicks, let's compare our table {$249} to a couple of major retail store tables & prices:
    Crate & Barrel,  $499
    Pottery Barn, $799
    Now, let's be clear. I am not complaining. We LOVE what we do, we LOVE our customers, and we RARELY encounter a situation where someone is disrespectful about pricing. I didn't blog about this in an effort to change anything that happens in our store, nor to make you feel sorry for us - it truly is more about education. In fact, we even offer painting workshops through Carver Junk, so YOU can do these projects yourself if you like! And now, you'll have an idea of what it will cost you in time and real dollars.{and, you won't be fooled by shows like Flea Market Flip! watch, enjoy, and take it as a great entertainment show :)  }