Queen Anne Desk Rescue

Dec 4, 2017 | Hemp Oil | 0 comments

It all started with a day that was incredibly frustrating. My internet was being extremely temperamental, my video tutorial failed to upload, my blog post was taking forever to process and I ran an errand only to find out that what I had purchased was the wrong item and I had to go back and return it.

It was one of those days when I had to ask Marc to drive because I was utterly and completely maxed out.

Have you been there before?

On the drive home during my errand-fixing excursion, I spied some furniture that was sitting at the foot of the driveway of a local bed and breakfast. Without wasting a breath, I asked Marc to take the next exit so I could investigate. As we pulled up in The Marshmallow, I began scanning for a sign. As my eyes found it, my heart lifted because it read, “FREE – Please Take”.

Sitting sweetly by the side of the road were six antique chairs, a Martha Washington armchair with a wood frame, and best of all – a HUUUGE Queen Anne desk made of solid gorgeous wood!

As Marc and I scooped up the free treasures and loaded them into the bed of The Marshmallow, he chuckled at me and said that what he enjoyed most about our spur of the moment excursion was that I spied the furniture from the highway – about a mile away. That takes skills, friends!

The desk (along with some of the chairs) is in the background of this screen shot from one of my Instagram videos. If you want to watch the full video, click here.

As you can see, it had chipping patches of veneer but it was brimming with potential!

My first task was to use my heat gun and remove the chipping patches of veneer.  They were mainly found on the fronts of the drawers.  If you want to see how I did it, click here.

Once the chipping patches were gone, I was left with surfaces that were rough to the touch.  There were even some gouges that I inflicted from my putty knife, so I filled those with wood filler and used my orbital sander to smooth everything out.  I hit the sides and the legs with 120 grit sandpaper to scuff them and then gave everything a good cleaning.  The drawers smelled a bit like mildew, so my Mom used some of Murphy’s Wood Oil Soap to wash them inside and out.  I went back and washed the inside of the desk, so now the piece smells much better!

Photo via

The top looked like it had potential to refinish well, so I sanded it down and re-stained it with my favorite combination – General Finishes Java Gel Stain and High Performance Topcoat in Satin.  These products never fail me, and they certainly didn’t this time!

For my color choice, I mixed equal parts Farmhouse White with Trophy from theMiss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint line.  There was probably a touch more Trophy in the blend than white, and it came out as a lovely silvery mist color.

As you can see in the photo above, I found new ring pulls.  The piece didn’t have any hardware when we found it, but each drawer had a round imprint where the hardware used to be.  Because the imprints were round, I assumed a set of ring pulls was in order.

To ensure a super smooth finish, I used 400 grit sandpaper all over the piece and I sealed it with Hemp Oil.  Oh, how I wish you could feel it!

Now that’s quite the transformation, wouldn’t you say?  Here’s that gorgeous refinished top.  Marc says it looks like a chocolate bar!

Queen Anne is not typically my favorite style of furniture, but this piece had some age to it.  It was not a modern piece and the sweeping curve of the bottom made for an aesthetically pleasing silhouette.  There was something about it that won me over the minute I saw it.  (And it also helps that the piece was free!)

My staging props are mostly from Painted Table Designs.  I popped in there a few days ago looking for lovely neutral pieces to use on furniture makeovers like this.  The owner, Brenda, has excellent taste and I had plenty to choose from!

I picked up a pair of matching faux topiaries and this slender vase.

This clock has a lovely worn patina and Marc and I use it in our living room when it’s not needed for photos.

The arched window is from Magnolia.  My Mom bought it to study because she wants to try her hand at making them.  She let me borrow it for staging this piece, and it was the perfect accent!

So the next time you’re out and about, keep your eyes peeled for great curbside treasures, like mine!

This desk is available to be purchased.  Contact me for the price, measurements, and pickup information if you’re interested!

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I'm Jenn Baker - Milk Paint lover, photographer, blogger, and QVC Guest Host. Click below to learn more about me and my creative business.  LEARN MORE ABOUT JENN

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