This is it! My first blog post! Hope to keep good content coming to all you design loving, DIYing, nest fluffing lovely people out there!
So like everyone else in the free world I’ve always loved the Restoration Hardware stain, natural looking with a washed bleachy grayish wash. However when I was in the actual Restoration Hardware store last week, the store seemed to be going in a new direction. Very minimal, streamline, sleek, it definitely felt more Mid Century then rustic! I did find the beloved weathered wood on a table or two so its definitely still there, just pushed a little towards the back. hmpf!! None the less I’m still going to try and copy it! My previous attempts have always come out a little more on the gray barn wood side, still pretty but not exactly what I wanted. This is the best result I have made so far! I’m sure I will keep tweaking with it and it will evolve but right now I’m pretty happy with it. And its pretty simple to achieve!
This is what I started with. She needed help. I found this gem for peanuts on the new Facebook Marketplace. The shape was great and I loved the baluster legs. I have since found out that this particular color/stain of wood is perfect for the paint wash I was hoping to achieve.
I gave the table a slight sanding, nothing major just a couple swipes of a high grit sand paper, seriously less than 5 minutes. I used Heirloom Traditions chalk paint for this project. Pretty typical of most chalk paint, its a little less than other higher price paint and the quality is good. My local garden store carries it so its super convenient for me. However I’m sure any chalk paint you are comfortable using will work just fine. The color I used was called Mocha but basically you are looking for a light brown/tan color. I covered the table in a thin layer, I wanted some of the grain to show through but to tone it down a bit and soften it. I wasn’t super thorough because it was getting other coats plus a light distress so I really didn’t have to be super particular which pretty much works for me!
Next I used a light gray color in a dry brush technique. Basically a minimal amount of paint and just sort of pushed it into the piece. I did not worry about an even coat. I just kind of worked it all over the table in fluid strokes, without really worrying if some spots weren’t getting covered. This is much easier to do on the legs and feet but a bit trickier on the top. The main thing is to remember its not going to be perfect and it shouldn’t be. Your looking for a weathered bleached out look and that’s meant to look wonderfully imperfect. A little hard to see but basically you can see the bits of gray just pushed in.
The last step is the most important. In fact if you are feeling particularly lazy you could probably skip the prior step and just get away with going straight to this, if the wood is the right color. This step is White Liming Wax. Basically instead of using clear wax you use a white wax. This table was perfect for the white wax because of all the details and raised edges, really try to overly load these areas to bring out all the details. I apply the wax with a soft white tshirt directly onto the wood. Wipe off any excess wax or areas where you think the wax is too heavy. Once the wax dries buff to a shine and a little distressing! You really can’t mess it up!
That’s it! I promise it really isn’t too hard, the more attempts you make the better your pieces will get! I’m now painting everything that sits still long enough in this great finish and its all holding up well. It looks great on candlesticks and small accessories, if you want a touch of rustic without committing to a big piece. Good Luck and happy painting!