I once saw a meme on Instagram that totally cracked me up. Dory from Finding Nemo was saying she had to cut back on buying so much furniture and then she sees a piece she likes and says “Ooh, look! Furniture!”
That’s basically what happens to me every time I walk into Morgantown Market. I’ll have a full queue of furniture to work on in the workshop, and I’ll see a great piece at a great price and I just can’t help myself. Such was the case when I was working a few weeks ago. A new merchant had moved in across the aisle from me and I spied a medium-sized piece with beautiful classic details.
lovely carved slender legs…
and Hepplewhite pulls!
The whole piece was painted in chocolate brown (including the hardware), but I saw tons of potential!
I quickly tore the tag off, paid for it at the counter and brought it home in The Marshmallow. The chocolate brown paint hid the beautiful details, so I wanted to lighten it up and let them shine. My paint of choice was Miss Mustard Seed’s “Mora”.
Mora is one of the shades in the European Collection. In the photo below, it’s the first color on the left followed by Schloss, Arabesque, Layla’s Mint, Marzipan and Bergere.
Mora is a whisper of a color that leans blue, green or gray depending on what’s around it. Mora is one of my favorite colors to paint with because it’s a great option when I’m not sure which color I should choose. It’s subtle enough to fit into just about any home decor, making it an ideal choice for someone who sells furniture a living!
My Mom and I tried to transform the chocolate brown piece in time for the Twin Valley Food Pantry Fundraiser, but we simply couldn’t pull it off. We were working quickly, so I didn’t take a “before” photo but I did do an Instagram story on the beginning steps, if you caught it. By the time the fundraiser rolled around, we had plenty of pieces to sell, so we put the one drawer piece on the back burner and let the dust settle from the event. (I will blog about how things went and share some of my thoughts soon. Believe it or not, I’m still processing!)
A few days after the fundraiser, my Mom finished the base for me and I refinished the top. It took three coats of Mora to get full coverage, which can be typical when you’re covering a dark color with a lighter one. Mom finish sanded it with 400 grit sandpaper, and let me tell you, the piece feels like velvet. No joke. It’s sooo soft! She did a great job and you can definitely tell when you run your hand over it.
Didn’t it turn out so nice? The piece is exactly three feet long and the drawer is about a foot deep. It’s got pretty dovetailed joints and is super clean inside.
I refinished the top by stripping off the chocolate brown paint using CitriStrip. After the “goop” was scraped off, I used odorless mineral spirits and 0000 grade steel wool to clean the piece. I gently sanded it with my orbital sander starting at 150 grit and finishing off at 220 grit. I sanded the ledge of the piece by hand to get inside of the grooves. My stain of choice wasn’t really a stain.
I used Varathane’s Weathered Wood Accelerator, which ages the wood and weathers it to look old. It’s the same product I used on my Ikea Rast nightstands (which are still available at Morgantown Market! They’re actually 15% off right now…).
The top of my Mora piece didn’t show quite that much variation in the wood tones. It weathered more consistently but it has a natural look now, which I’m really happy with! I sealed it using General Finishes High Performance Topcoat in Satin.
There is a top rail or backplate that screws into the top. I decided to paint it in Mora so it would kind of sandwich the refinished wood top in between beautiful subtle color.
This piece is now available at Morgantown Market for $215 plus tax. I also brought in an oak side table that has the same color combination. I snapped these photos quickly with my iPhone before I brought it over to the Market. It’s available for $80 if you’re in the market for a table with the sweetest shape!
I also have my green French provincial buffet/dresser on sale for $395 if you’ve had your eye on it.
That green desk in the background is coming home with me to be repainted. If you’ve been curious how to paint over existing Milk Paint, this makeover will be right up your alley! I plan on replacing the green desk with my Victorian chair, which is still looking for a new home. It’s priced at $225 if you have a space for it! (P.S. – The scrolled side table in the photo below has been sold.)
So there’s been a lot of furniture shuffling, but that’s always welcomed in my world because it makes room for new pieces. Plus, it feeds my Dory attention span. “Ooh look! Furniture!”