Monday, July 6, 2015

To paint or not to paint... that is the question

I love the look of painted furniture just love it.  I have a lot of 'Pinned' painted furniture on my DIY board on Pintrest, (link below).  I am just afraid, very afraid of doing this myself.  The furniture I would want to paint is old, really old and has come from family.  What if I mess it up?  It's not like I can go back to what it was before without a lot of work once I start down the painting path. 

So, to paint or not? 

Lets start with my dinning room set.  My grandparents brought this from Scotland when they immigrated.  They came with 10 kids and the clothes on their backs.  Once settled in Baltimore my Grandfather sent for the dinning room set.  Miraculously it made it in once piece.  It was willed to me when my grandparents passed and I've brought it to Colorado. 

There are no nails in any of this furniture it is all dovetailed.

Let's start with the table.  First and foremost, the chairs you see below do not go with the table.  They go with the table that we have outside (you'll see that in a bit).  The chairs that go with the table have not faired as well as the rest of the set.  After all they are about 100 years old and the years have not been kind to them.  Without nails, (only dowels), they have become very unstable so we have them stored. 

The table needs a good sanding, I've done nothing to it over the years that I've had it.  It has some nice details in it.  Sorry it needs a good cleaning!  A bit dusty there isn't it. 

So, paint it?  Paint it all or just the base?  What color? 

The next contender is the buffet...broken leg and all.
You can see the leg details match the table. 
I feel like the buffet is the best contender for paint.  So, leave the top dark and only paint the body?  What color?  I've been leaning toward a robins egg blue or a blue green, grey or white? 

I've also got the china cabinet. 

I've thought about painting the inside a light grey or off white cream color but should I paint the entire thing?  So is this a better contender to paint? 

I'd only like to paint one piece of the dinning room set.  Otherwise I think it will be too much.  What do you think?  Should I paint the chairs as well?  I know I need to reupholster them and that is in the mix for this year.  Overall I'd really appreciate some input. 

I'd also like to paint our outdoor table.  This is the table that goes with the chairs I'm using in my dinning room right now.  It was my husbands GREAT Grandmothers kitchen table.  There are 3 leafs and a total of 6 chairs.  This table came from the great-grandmothers farmhouse in Cheyenne Wells Colorado and was willed to my Father-In-Law who gave it to my husband and myself.  So this is another piece of furniture that has special meaning. 

I was thinking of painting the base white and staining the top a dark walnut color.  What do you think? It is protected on our covered porch and in the winter I wrap it in plastic.  So a white base and dark stained top or a grey base and a dark stained top?  OR another color all together?  OR should I paint the entire piece? 
Again, I appreciate suggestions. 

Thanks for stopping by!  I appreciate your help and suggestions. 
Have a safe and happy week!

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  1. You have some really beautiful pieces of furniture with the added bonus of family history. I'm certainly no expert and I have lots of wood in our dining room. Just looking at your photos, I'd say to paint the table base and chairs in a whitish color and refinish the top of the table. I think your idea of painting the buffet and keeping the top in a wood tone is a good idea. If you haven't visited Miss Mustard Seed blog, you might get some good ideas from her dining room tour as far as paint colors. Here's the link to her recent dining room tour:

    I think your chairs will look gorgeous painted and reupholstered! I'm visiting from Mod Mix Monday. Good luck!

  2. i would paint the table base and chairs a cream color and the tops of the table and buffet, sand and restain the tops. paint the buffet and china cabinet the blue color and the inside of the china cabinet paint it the same cream color as the table and chairs. but first find a fabric for the chairs with blue and cream in it and it could have other colors too and then pick paint colors from the fabric. it is so much easier to find the fabric first. I wish I could see more of the dining room to get a better feel of the room and the furniture in it. good luck

  3. With antiques it's said that any changes to finishes will really devalue the pieces, which may not matter if they're never sold or you don't care. I personally would never suggest painting a true antique. I could see refinishing them and I'll be painting the inside only of our china cabinet a robin's egg blue (lots of pics online). I will probably refinish the outside. As far as trends go, I have read the chippy paint, chalk paint, distressed furniture thing is on it's way out. Again if you don't care that's another thing. I'd go with refinishing and let the true beauty of the wood shine thru. You can't buy new wood like that now. As for paint I'd never go with white or cream for a dining table you use and the top would be the worst for wear. I'd go with the bases only, whatever color you like since you live with it...

  4. You might also look at having your wobbly chairs looked at and hardware could probably be added to strengthen them...

  5. what Nancy says about painted furniture is not true. they have done all for longer than any of use have been alive, it might be that something new is taking over and I know paint furniture will be around long after I am gone.

    1. I didn't say there's no painted furniture out there, I'm saying the trend of painting over antiques is a trend. Not a good idea IMO but it's not my furniture....