29 July 2013

Sweet Revival - Metallic Glazed Table

For the last six months I've been searching for a side table with traditional lines but a modern look, a transitional piece to help merge two competing styles. I finally found exactly what I was looking for in, of all places, my own home.

furniture glazing

It's exactly what I was searching for. But this table didn't start out looking so glam + modern.

When I first spotted this table hiding in the corner, it had a light pine finish and wasn't at all what I was after. But what it did have was classic lines. I knew that with a little dimension added, this table could be transformed from country casual to a classic modern.

Here it is with a coat of primer applied. See the potential in those legs?

primed table

After the primer, I painted it in my favorite shade of neutral. For me, that's any shade of grey.

Nice, but I think you'll agree the table is still a little flat and needs more depth.

painted side table
For me, that usually comes from a good distressing. But my goal was modern, and distressing would detract from that. In this particular case, adding rather than taking away was going to give me the look I wanted. So I chose to add a glaze.

antique paint finish
I didn't use a standard paint glaze for this table because I was looking for subtle sheen and a hint of drama. To create drama and dimension, I applied a metallic glaze instead.

When creating a metallic look on a piece of furniture, it's common to use a metallic paint with a stain or paint glaze applied over the surface. But that technique was too bold for my taste. By reversing the process, I was able to achieve a sheen of golden highlights that created a much more subtle effect.

creating a metallic glaze
When I created this glaze, I mixed it out of what I had on hand - one part Liquid Leaf  by Plaid to four parts paint thinner. But for anyone wanting to replicate this look, I recommend using an oil based glazing medium which you can find at your local art supply store or online. I say this because paint thinner is not sold as a glazing medium on its own and doesn't have the working time a true glazing medium would have.

But if you choose to try this method, remember that this glaze evaporates very quickly and is best made in small batches (in a glass or tin jar, not plastic). Also remember that a little goes a long way. I made my batches using 1/8 tsp. Liquid Leaf to 1/2 tsp paint thinner (a 1:4 ratio). For this small table, two batches were used.

glazing furniture techniques

Working in small sections, first apply the glaze into the crevices with a small artist's brush. Afterwards, apply the glaze over the surface with a rag and let set for approximately one minute. Using a second rag, gently wipe away excess until the desired look is achieved.

*If the glaze is too heavy in a particular area, simply add another layer and wipe away until the desired amount of saturation is achieved.

Apply this technique to the entire piece and allow to dry for 24 hours.

faux finishes for furniture
Do you see the hint of shimmer it adds? I love the result - just the right amount of glam.

gold glazed furniture

To complete this table's transformation, I replaced the wood knob with crystal.

crystal drawer pull
And here it is in its new environment all dramatic and making a statement.

gold glazed table
So pretty! The metllic glaze gives it a bit of glam but isn't shouting out for attention. A perfect balance that will tie in nicely with other finishes in a room.

When looking for a new piece of furniture, I sometimes forget that the best place to shop is in my own home. It's always a good rule of thumb. Before you decide to purchase a new piece of furniture, consider recycling something you already have on hand.

By shopping your home for pieces that have become obsolete or outdated, you can give them a whole new life with just a simple coat of paint or a new finish while saving yourself some major bucks at the same time!


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