Paint effects

There are a hundred and one things I keep meaning to do – things that aren’t important and so get put aside for “some day”. And some day never seems to come. Yesterday I did a couple of those things which made a nice change!

Some of the things included giving a coat of paint to various items that I liked but weren’t colours I was particularly keen on. I was given these lovely little lanterns ages ago – the original flat apple green shade of the powder coating really isn’t me but I liked the style and I often put candles on the table at dinner. So last year I redid one in Annie Sloan paints and waxes as an experiment and really liked the rustic distressed finish and how it matched my kitchen. I just never got around to doing its twin. I also have these little wooden tulips which were a gift from friends who holidayed in Amsterdam. They’ve sat on my shelf for a couple of years but I always wondered what they’d look like with a little bit of a colour change…


I popped the glass out of the lantern and got to work.


A flat finish wasn’t the point otherwise I would have chosen spray paints. I’m unconvinced about Annie Sloan paints – I’ve seen some fantastic things that other people do with them but I don’t seem to have the knack! However they are quite forgiving to use in situations like this as they apparently stick to anything! And the waxes are quite an interesting way to finish the surface.



I rubbed it all over with the clear wax to seal the paint once dry and then daubed on spots of the dark wax and them buffed it off slightly. It’s meant to give it an aged patina. I’m not convinced I achieved this but heigh ho! I then dabbed some gold wax on areas for a bit of a lift.

Yesterday was quite gloomy and overcast so the “after pic” is quite grainy and indistinct. I might have to take another when the sun comes back! But on the whole I’m happy with the pair of lanterns now.


The tulips got a coat of chalk paint and then I played around with the dark tinted oils sitting on the lids of the pot (I’d stirred the paints thoroughly to mix them but they separate out over time). I used the tints and to drag over the surface of the wet paint to give tulip-like markings and make the paint less one-dimensional. Because this was unmixed paint it took a lot longer to dry than regular chalk paint – I propped them up in a vase whilst they dried. I then painted the stalks with a tester pot of Farrow and Ball Inchyra Blue which I had left over from another project.

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Once dry, they also got a coat of clear wax to seal and then a little bit of gold wax to finish. They’re a lot more subtle than before – I just used these paints because they were colours I had so they blend in with the kitchen now. But if I was choosing colours from scratch I would probably have picked out rusty oranges and deep Burgundy and mustard to compliment the lighter bluey-green shades in this room.

But again, it’s fine. And was nice to spend time doing something different to textiles for a change!!




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