Ever since I laid eyes on Miss Mustard Seed’s furniture, I have wanted to learn how to achieve that look… that genuine I’ve-been-around-for-centuries-look! Well, thanks to the blogging conference that I attended last weekend, I had the opportunity to take a painting class with Miss Mustard Seed herself… you best believe I was on the front row!!
Miss Mustard Seed (Marian) has been a long time blog-idol of mine! I met her for the first time back in May, at Luckett’s May Fair, where I was lucky enough to purchase her grandmother’s vanity, that yes, she had painted! Ever since then, I had been studying that piece.. how did she make it look like that?!? Well, friends… Marian and Shaunna from Imperfectly Perfect spent two hours teaching me how (well, it wasn’t just me, but wouldn’t that have been cool?!)
I listened oh-so-intently, asking questions as we went along. These gals taught us three amazing painting techniques… I’ll attempt to share with you how to accomplish all three. But first, MILK PAINT!! If you have never used milk paint, it comes in a powder form that you mix with water. I have used Marian’s milk paint before, but each time I use it I have a different consistency, so I was anxious to see how SHE would mix it!!
Well, I guess I was doing it right!! To mix the paint, start with your powder in a plastic cup. We added water slowly, while stirring with a
stir stick handle of a paintbrush (they ran out of stir sticks). See no one is perfect! And you keep adding… and mixing… until you get the consistency you want. Now, try it out! If it’s too runny, thin, or transparent, add more powder. If your brush drags along the surface or is chunky, add more water.
As much as I like chunky, not in my milk paint! I got the seal of approval from Marian on my mix!
Now for the three painting techniques:Restoration Hardware-ish The Layered Look Drift Wood/Wash
We had several pieces of molding that we used to practice each technique. Shaunna gave a great tip to write the instructions for each finish on the back of the piece of wood. So I pried the paintbrush from my fingers long enough to jot down the instructions!
Finish One: Restoration Hardware-ish1. Paint one coat of Annie Sloan paint in Pure White. 2. Let Dry. 3. Paint a second coat of Annie Sloan paint in French Linen. 4. Let Dry. 5. Take a moist cloth (we used old t-shirts) and rub off the paint as desired.
(In some places, I took it back to the white, in others I took it back to the raw wood. It’s whatever your preference is.)
Here’s Shaunna’s Example of the Restoration Hardware-ish finish…
Finish Two: The Layered Look1. Paint one coat of Annie Sloan paint in Aubusson. 2. Let Dry. 3. Apply Resisting Agent (We used Vaseline, hemp oil, and wax. More about this below.) 3. Paint a second coat of Annie Sloan paint in French Enamel. 4. Let Dry. 5. Take a dry cloth and rub off the paint as desired. You will need to apply pressure.
As for the resisting agents, a couple tips, Marian has a great wax that she sells with her paint line, but she was honest is sharing that any wax will work! A candle, a crayon, anything! Think back to when you were in 2nd grade and you did those crayon/water color paintings. Remember? Anywhere you had crayon, the paint didn’t stick. Same idea here! And the same goes for the Vaseline and the hemp oil, wherever you apply it, the paint will either crackle or chip, creating a very authentic look! I just LOVE it!!
Here’s Marian’s example of the Layered Look…
Be still my heart! This is one of my favorite pieces by Marian!
Finish Three: The Drift Wood Wash
(Are we having fun yet, or what?!?! This one is the most in depth!)1. Paint one coat of Miss Mustard Seed paint in Typewriter. 2. Let Dry. 3. In a separate cup mix Miss Mustard Seed paint (one part shutter gray & one part grainsack) 4. Admire the BEAUTIFUL color you just created! 5. Paint a second coat of the custom Miss Mustard Seed paint. 6. Let Dry. 7. Hurry! Now rub off some of the second coat BEFORE it dries! Not all of it, just some. 8. Let Dry. 9. Dry brush Annie Sloan paint in Ironstone on top.
If you are not familiar with the dry brush technique, take your dry brush, dip in the paint, and then dab on a cloth or paper towel to remove the access. You want the brush to be as dry as possible, but still have paint on it. And then lightly brush the paint on in the areas that you like!! You can’t mess it up!! If you do, just paint it again!
Here’s Marian’s example of the Drift Wood Wash Finish…
I love the ‘frenchiness’ of this finish!
After we completed the three finishes, we played with waxes… dark wax, furniture wax, clear wax, ear wax, ha ha!! Just kidding. And that’s just a personal preference as to what you like. One handy tip from Marian when it comes to wax, if you will be selling your furniture outside, or putting it outside at your house, DON’T wax it! It will get warm in the heat and become sticky!! Good to know!!
So, how did I do?? Well, you tell me…
I’m just smitten over the looks that I achieved and I have these two gals to thank for it!!
Thank you, both for teaching such an amazing class!!
I leave you with this quote that I jotted down from Marian as she was talking about painting furniture…
“When you do you, that’s what makes you successful” – Miss Mustard Seed
And here’s a handy image you can pin if you want to refer back to this tutorial later!!
Until next time,
Vintage News Junkie
Full Disclosure: I wasn’t compensated in any way for this post. I just love these gals and the information that they shared at Haven Conference 2013.