The Most Challenging Piece, To Date.

The Most Challenging Piece, To Date.

I never said I didn’t like a challenge.

(at least not openly).

But this piece….this piece…kicked my butt several times.

It’s a beautiful piece.  Gorgeous mahogany veneer, beautiful serpentine fronted drawers. The woman I bought it off, just wanted to get rid of it.  It had been in a back room holding craft supplies

(Oh! the shame, shame shame).

I knew immediately that I didn’t want to paint over the veneer.  

However (and there’s always a ‘however’) I spotted a  ‘Georgia O’Keeffe’ over one of the keyholes.

 Truly unfortunate placement.  

And I’m funny because once I see something like that, I can never un-see it.

So, it was a prime candidate for image transfer.  

But, I needed an image that would play off the rich deep mahogany coloring. And I found this.

Sleeping Beauty by Thomas Ralph Spence.

C’est Magnifique.

Most of you know that I’ve done several *cough* image transfers.  They’re quite easy for me to do now, given the practice I’ve had.  But this one just did not work out as planned.  I’m not sure if it was the cold weather (I work out of my garage) or the curves on the bow front.  But, for whatever reason, the image just did not transfer well (understatement of the year)


Honestly, I could have cried. And chopped it up.  And thrown it out of a window.

So much work involved in trying to cover up the missing areas.  So.Much.Work.

And so I began.  Slightly beaten down. Almost whimpering.

Just me and  my tiny paint brushes and acrylic paints.  Dab, dab, dab.

(And trust me when I tell you this: I am not a painter!! Not even close.  This is my impression of a girl).  

So my version of painting is, in essence, just painting over someone else’s stellar work.  But it’s still not easy for me.

It took a long time to get from that to this.

Dab. Dab.Dab.

 And then an even longer time to get to here.

I knew that I wanted the image to look incredibly old.  I had deliberately painted the base color with lots of texture. I’d just read ‘The Velvet Hours’ and loved the idea of finding furniture in it’s original space.  

Old furniture at home, so to speak.  

I imagined this dresser to be aged, and browned by years and years of cigar smoke.  Because, seriously, any cool chick worth her weight would spend her hours at home puffing on cigars.  Right? Am I right?

And this is what I ended up with.

 Old, worn, nicotine loveliness.

That face.

I’m quite sure this is what a smokers lung must look like. Quite sure.

The detailing is gold leaf.  Because, why not?  But seriously, how could anyone paint over this veneer.

Oh the shame. Shame.Shame.

And so we have it: The piece that gave me a run for my money.

But, in all honestly, I think she’s my best piece to date.  The challenge did me good.

So to all my fellow painters out there, I guess the lesson here is make sure you have plenty of wine at hand  when a piece looks like it’s going to kick you in the butt.  Refuse to let it.


Kick it back.

And then drink.


{insert catchy ending phrase here}

Diane aka The Paint Factory

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