I purchased the settee as one half of a pair. I was thrilled to find them as they are quality antiques out of a fabulous Philadelphia main line estate. The settee covered in chinoiserie silk was in good enough condition that I resold it immediately to an antique dealer specializing in French pieces! Unfortunately, its evil twin was not in as good shape. I knew I wouldn't be able to flip it in the condition it was in (although I admit I tried).
The fabric was stained and worn and there was work needed on the wooden frame. I did not want to incur the expense of reupholstering, so I decided to paint and glaze the wood (after some repairs) and then paint the fabric with chalk paint. I know, what was I thinking? Although I have read a few testimonials that chalk paint works well for painting fabric, my little settee had bigger plans for me than a simple paint job. First, some clamps and wood glue took care of the needed repairs. Then, a good sanding. Then I pulled all the trim away from the frame so I could paint and glaze the frame ( Linen White with an old Ralph Lauren glaze I had left over from another project). Then I had to paint the trim (Annie Sloan Paris Gray) without getting paint on the frame. This was an incredibly time consuming process as I had to use pieces of cardboard to protect the frame from paint and had to move and reposition the cardboard every few inches. As I was painting the trim I also painted the rest of the fabric. This is as far as I have gotten. Days have passed, perhaps weeks. Time has ceased to have meaning. I cannot think or see beyond finishing this bloody settee.
I still need to apply at least one more coat of paint. I have to paint or make a cover for the seat cushion- my original intent. I haven't yet decided but all signs point to no more painting. I have to sand (yes, sand) all the fabric to soften it as the paint has made it stiff as a Victorian corset. Then I need to glue the trim back in place. And finally, do a bit of work on the underside of the piece.
Do I see a light at the end of the tunnel? Perhaps a very dim beginning of one.
The "good" twin
It lies in wait
The trim pulled away
The frame painted
The first coat of paint on the fabric and trim
I am still considering putting it out on the curb. So far, I have won the battle but may lose the war!!
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