Friday, March 15, 2013


I have seen lots of posts on facebook business pages asking people to offer opinions about whether to paint particular pieces of antique or newer furniture or to leave it as is.  Sometimes the items are beautiful walnut, cherry, or pine treasures that have withstood a hundred years or more of use.  Here in Minnesota, oak is still a popular wood that never seems to lose its appeal.  Often the pieces I've seen in shops or at sales are newer, but of good quality.   Have to admit that I have on occasion, painted smaller pieces as well as tackeled a newer china cabinet that was not in good condition, nor was the wood of good solid quality. However, I have a really difficult time taking a beautiful treasure and applying paint: whether it be white, grey, aqua or some of the newest variations of chalk.  I have also found that most occasional sales feature painted furniture and are showing similar decorating accents so lots of things are being treated to all colors of the rainbow.  I don't want to be a spoil sport, but I am thinking there should be room for painted as well as wood  pieces  in a really interesting home.  In the 70s we had "antiqued" moss green, pink with black with lots of flowers and stripes. (at least friends of my parents sported those designs in their houses)  A friend hates anything Ethan Allen, which was a solidly constructed line in the " Early American"  period.  We loved it because it was sturdy, looked good with authentic antiques, was affordable and best of all stood up well when put to the test  by three little boys.  Lest we think painted furniture is something new---it isn't.  In fact, some of the earliest examples of folk art style cabinets, trunks, boxes or chairs command enormous prices and used to be much sought after.  Most of the truly early primitive items are probably in museums or private collections.  Isn't it good that each of us can find something attractive or beautiful in a wide variety of colors or patterns that can be changed with the season or with the emergence of a "new look."  All it takes is one piece to bring a focus to a room, or for that matter one piece can cause an entire room to be redecorated and remodeled.  Hmmm, that reminds me of the time we got a new microwave and ended up with a new kitchen..............So what do you think is the answer? 

1 comment:

  1. Yes this seems to be a complicated subject. I myself find it hard to paint an item that is in good condition. I recently had a china cabinet that I was considering painting. it was sturdy and overall I thought in pretty fair condition but it had a few areas where the finish was showing wear. I put it in the shop for sale and to help stage my area. I figured when I had something else to take its place I would take it home and paint it fresh. Low and behold it sold as it was ;>) I have a girlfriend who paints almost evrything she finds and she has done well. I have even been seeing in some of the magazine where people have even been painting china hutches in bold deep colors with highly glossy finishes and they have commanded some fairly high prices. People seem to be needing the pops of color in thier homes now. With walls being painted any hue the lighter or bolder colors on a piece of furniture gives them the feel they are looking for without repainting a room. OK so there you have it! Guess I am going to be painting a few pieces myself ;>)