This one has been a long time coming. For starters I’ve had the bedside table for years. Actual years. I think it was one of the first purchases I made when I moved to London and I can’t even remember where it came from (Homebase, possibly?). It’s just one of those generic, useful pieces of furniture that you can always find a home for and a stash of odds and ends to fill it up with.
But let’s be honest, it’s boring as hell. And now that I’ve finally got the living area looking cool(ish) I’ve decided it’s time to crack on with the bedroom. The look I’m going for is a kind of modern-global-scrapbook-calm er… thing. You can check out my Pinterest board HERE.
I’ve also been wanting to try out Annie Sloan‘s famous chalk paint for a while. So bearing all that in mind, here’s what I cobbled together…
One of the most attractive things for me about this paint is that you don’t have to prep your surface. Fantastic news, especially if you only have a couple of hours over the weekend to spare. I did give this a general clean but beyond that it requires no sanding, nothing. You just whack the paint straight on. (By the way, it’s called Chalk Paint because of its matt finish but if you put it on the wall you can also use it as a blackboard.)
I went for graphite which is the closest thing to black in the range. The whole vibe of this paint is rather shabby chic which isn’t my style AT ALL but I was drawn in by the idea of a more rough finish. In fact this little bedside table in burgundy (or ‘primer red’) was one of my original sources of inspiration for the project.
The actual painting part couldn’t be easier. You just daub the stuff on. There are a variety of styles you can create and techniques you can use (I’m keen to try the ‘crackle effect‘ next) but since I was going for total coverage with no wood showing through, I just gave the whole thing a liberal coating. The idea is to create a bit of a uneven surface with some visible bumps and brush strokes so you really can be as careless as you like and you should only need one coat. Once that’s done, leave it to dry.
Next up is the wax. The point of the wax is to bring out the grain, the texture, the imperfections and to make the surface water repellent. It’s also super easy to use. Just brush it on then use a cloth to wipe it off. Done. If you’re interested in seeing more in-depth tutorials, I recommend checking out the Annie Sloan YouTube channel. And that is officially the last time I will mention Annie Sloan. I swear this post is not sponsored, I was just really excited to try this stuff out and really pleased with the results. Paint is one of my favourite things to play with so any time I get to try a new one is a pretty happy occasion.
As you can see the finish is pretty rough but that’s part of the charm. The texture gives it a real ‘lived-in’ look and also adds a bit of depth to the colour.
The paint and wax was now finished but I wasn’t. After all, any idiot can paint a piece of furniture, right? And I wanted it to properly tie in with the bedroom. I think I’ve told you about our bed, haven’t I? It’s a genuinely interesting piece of design. It’s got a bit of a colonial vibe going on with its ornate wood and lattice headboard. So I decided to add a sheet of cane webbing to each side in a move I nicked quite blatently from the rather lovely Craft Habit (she may spell knobs ‘nobs’ but man does that girl know how to make a pretty bedside table). I just cut it to size and stuck it on with PVA glue before leaving it to dry. The webbing comes in a roll so I left it out with a couple of heavy books on top first to help flatten it out.
Then it was just a case of adding a couple of new handles and we were ready to rock.
Except not quite. It’s all very well having a pretty bedside table on the outside but surely the minute you open it you’re going to see that cheap old wood again? No thanks. So I papered the insides.
¡Olé! Yes, flamenco drawer liners. After all, who doesn’t want flamenco in their drawers?
This is wrapping paper. I looked at loads of different wallpapers but actually when it comes to fiddly little spaces like drawers and cupboards, wallpaper is a bit thick. So I went to my new favourite stationery shop, Lagom. I fell in love with their monochrome print paper back in October last year and figured they would have some interesting offerings. I wasn’t disappointed. This flamenco print is designed by illustrator and recent graduate Naomi Wilkinson which made me even more happy because as you know I am ALL about fostering new talent.
So. Here’s the full breakdown…
1 x Wooden bedside table
2 x Clear cut glass doorknobs £1.40 each, Ebay
2 x 24″ sheets cane webbing £7.49 each, Somerset Willow Growers
3 x Sheets flamenco gift wrap £1.50 each, Lagom
1L Annie Sloan chalk paint in Graphite £16.95, Annie Sloan
500ml Soft wax £7.95, Annie Sloan
Brushes (Annie Sloan does her own but any fat brushes will do, I reckon)
A cloth (I just used an ordinary dish cloth)
A hacksaw (for cutting the door knob bolts down to size)