A new take on a Mid Century Modern Glass Front Table.
I had been contemplating how to transform this little table. My grandparents had furniture very similar to this, so it brings back happy memories of my childhood. This would have been a side table in a living room, used to keep books or paper and pens close by. My grandmother suffered from diabetes, and spent hours sitting in a chair with her foot propped up, reading or writing letters, with her stationery in a table beside her comfy chair.
I wanted to keep to a palette that is reminiscent of my childhood – oranges, greens, yellows. I found a gorgeous paper filled with letters and postcards – perfect for some decoupage.
The first thing I did was to give the table a thorough washing. I removed the glass doors and the legs, then repaired a couple of spots with wood filler. I then sanded all of the wood and used a product from Fusion called Ultra-Grip on the laminate top of the cabinet, to ensure proper adhesion of the paint. There’s no need to Ultra-Grip the sides where I will be decoupaging the paper.
I then used Fusion’s Concealer for the first coat. This is a very dark brown, and Tuscan Orange tends to be a bit “thin”, needing extra coats for perfect coverage, so one coat of Concealer made sense.
I then painted with Tuscan Orange.
Most colours of Fusion Mineral Paint give great coverage with only one coat, but there are a few that always need more coats. The whites, Liberty Blue, and Fort York Red tend that way. Fusion is made using all natural pigments with no added chemicals to enhance the colours. This is very important to me, as I’d rather paint a second coat than be exposed to harsh chemicals.
I waited until the next morning to apply the second coat, to give the paint a chance to dry and cure well. My workshop is a bit on the cold side, and this damp winter weather seems to affect the drying time of the paint. It was dry to the touch in less than an hour, but I wanted to be on the safe side.
I learned a technique called “Colour Washing” from Julie McDowell, a Canadian artist. She taught me to use three analogous colours in a swirling motion with a very light touch, which creates a marbling effect. I love how this combination of Fort York Red, Tuscan Orange, and Mustard, with a wee bit of a mixture of Raw Silk and Buttermilk Cream, turned out. I used the same technique inside the cabinet.
The next step was to apply my paper. It was a gorgeous heavy wrapping paper, but not as thick as wallpaper, so I had to be very careful. I applied Transfer Gel, then smoothed on the paper, using an old credit card to work out the bubbles. It took patience, but I finally achieved a nice, smooth look. The second side took two tries to get it right.
After consulting with other Fusion Merchants, I decided to apply Transfer Gel on top of the paper to ensure a tough finish. That did NOT work, as you can see here. The paper bubbled up and looked terrible. Never get discouraged when things don’t go well. You can always try again!
I dampened everything down, removed the paper and the Transfer Gel, and started over.
This time, I simply applied a thin coat of Tough Coat, using a slightly damp rag. Success! I let it dry, then added three more coats to make sure the paper stays put.
Here’s the finished piece:
It’s a tribute to the 1950’s and 60’s. What do you think?