Metallic Cupcake

If ever a piece of furniture deserved its own blog post, this is the one!! I gotta jump right to the foot, which not only inspired the title of this blog post, it left me longing for a peanut butter cupcake!!

Metallic Cupcake Legs

Ornate, solid, and full of potential, this chest sat patiently in the shop for several months because mind just could not settle on a color! I was close to pulling it out and giving it a dose of vivid color at one point but the piece cried, NO! If there is anything I have learned in my years of painting furniture, it’s to listen to a piece when it speaks!

metallic cupcake chest before

 Now, before you send a team out with a straight jacket to commit me, let me explain! I don’t actually hear audible voices from the furniture. It’s past, which speaks in each ding, crack and imperfection, determines how it needs to be finished. This one lived a battered life and wasn’t gonna go for a shiny bold color!

I hope the following pictures will answer the questions posed by concerned wood lovers {not that there is anything wrong with that} when I posted this piece for sale…”Why in the world would anybody in their right mind paint that”, one person asked. Another accused me of committing the ultimate sin if I did! I realize much can be lost in a single photo so here’s why folks…

top before

dresser top before

missing molding close up
drawer front

drawer front

missing molding close up

missing molding 2

broken molding

The top was missing patches of veneer and had loose veneer in several areas. The beautiful carved moldings were broken and in some cases, missing completely! I took care of all that with Bondo. You can see a full tutorial on that here. The entire piece was dry and thirsty and in no condition to be showcased! Painting it makes more sense now, huh?

Before I could even get started on repairs, I had to give the piece a good cleaning! I can’t stress enough the importance of this step! There are so many things you can’t see or even feel. Years of grime and yuck seep down into the wood and that needs to be washed away before applying paint. If you don’t, you will get unexpected, unwelcomed spots after you paint! I use TSP (Trisodium Phosphate) on every piece I paint!

Dirty Girl!

Dirty Girl Closeup

9 times out of 10, the furniture I find cheap enough to make a profit on will take hours, sometimes days to mend! I rarely ever get lucky enough to just paint it! This one needed lots of TLC!

Reinforced Drawers

rebuilt moldings

This one cracks me up! My very observant three year old was hanging out in the shop while I was working on this piece. He came over to take a look while I was in the middle of sanding down the filler. “You makin’ a dinosaur momma?”, he asked! Sure looked like it at that moment!

rebuilt molding 2

This one cracks me up too! As I was uploading the picture of the pile O’ veneer, I spotted something my nine year old has searched high and low for! The tooth trunk the school nurse gave him for the tooth he lost at school! You see it?

pile of veneer

After a few days of tightening, scraping and rebuilding, she was ready for paint!

stripped top

I loved the raw looking wood that was under the layers of damaged veneer and I really wanted to keep the variations in color. I applied one coat of Minwax Special Walnut Stain then gave it a coat of Fiddes and Sons Ruggar Brown. I love the color and sheen!

refreshed top

Stained top

I listened to the piece and gave her a soft color that didn’t hide her imperfections but instead, showed them off. I lathered her with two coats of Benjamin Moore’s Weimaraner {aka, the PERFECT neutral}. It’s from the Aura line of  paint which contains zero voc’s. Mixed with the all natural, no voc Webster’s Chalk Paint Powder, you get an all green, perfect covering chalk paint!

metallic cupcake chest metallic cupcake chest antique chest makeover metallic cupcake chest
I was lucky enough to be able to work with the authentic crackle of the original varnish…people work really hard to mimic that look! I used Fiddes and Sons Ruggar Brown Wax to further accentuate the effect. The moldings were begging for attention so I brought out the bling! Stencil Creme is awesome for this kind of project! While I wanted to showcase the moldings, I didn’t want a huge contrast, so I chose Royal Stencil Creme in Pearl Oyster. I’m gonna shut up and let the Metallic Cupcake show herself off for a minute!
detail close ups

Check out what a difference paint makes! Here, the black recessed areas blended with the dark wood.metallic cupcake chest before

And now they stand out and demand attention! metallic molding details

dark wax details cupcake legs distressed details close up detail of aging

close up distressing

bottom detail

close up of metallic molding close up drawer detail metallic carvings

I almost forgot about the hardware! The cool, mustache looking pulls (pictured on bottom) were too cool to trade but I couldn’t deal with the gold.

refreshed hardware

So, I painted them with the same Royal Stencil Creme I used on the moldings, then toned them down with distressing. Perfect marriage!

refreshed hardware

I wish I could capture the beauty of this piece with a photo!! The depth and richness make you wanna get up close and love on it! In fact, every person that has come into the shop has done just that!

Abbey Approved

It was Abbey Approved! Did you fall in love too? She’s still available by the way, just waiting to be swept off her cupcake feet!

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  1. Awesome piece of furniture…and awesome makeover. Love how you fixed the missing appliques!

  2. KateinAustin says:

    Muah! It is absolutely beautiful

  3. Oh my goodness! What a beauty. You served her well- I can’t believe how much time and care you took with her. Just gorgeous! (I linked over from FFF)

  4. Wow, it doesn’t even look like the same piece. You are so talented. Thank you for sharing this inspiration!

  5. very nice … well done, love the color combination. Made it pretty by enhancing the time-worn look.
    Audrey Z. @ Timeless Treasures

  6. WOW! …. That’s all I can say…. WOW!!! Needless to say, I just pinned it. …. just, WOW!

  7. west furniture revival says:

    would love to feature this piece, it turned out fabulous if that would be ok please let me know

  8. I really like your creativeness and your eye for the enlightened projects you have done. I have been doing upholstery and interior projects for over 35 years. Would love to get togethor and flip over some portfollio projects and ideas. My family and I are still getting settled in from NWA. When I get a chance to get unpacked a little, shop temp. set up, I’d like to discuss some things with ya. God bless Shawn

  9. This is awesome, incredible and exceptional! You did a fabulous job. Normally, I don’t go all in for the heavily distressed pieces, but when a piece distresses itself and you bring out the beauty – it is amazing! Love your work. Pinning this now!

    • Don’t you love it when a piece decides it’s fate? :) Thank you for your sweet compliments Bobbie and thank you for pinning! <3

  10. Cristina says:

    What did you use to re-build the broken molding?

    • Thank you Christina! I use automotive bondo when I am going to paint over it. I also like the Minwax wood filler that has a two step mixture. Hope this helps!

  11. I found you by visiting the CeCe Caldwell’s blog. Subtle…Stunning… gorgeous… and outstandingly beautiful. GREAT work! I am checking out your blog right now.

    Small House / Big Sky Donna / White Oak Studio Designs / SW Michigan
    Hand-Painted Vintage Furniture Transformations
    Facebook: (for portfolio of chalk painted work)

  12. This piece made my heart skip a beat or two. Love it!! You did a beautiful job of rescuing a piece that had been sorely abused over the years. She thanks you for it!

  13. Marge Clayton says:

    This is one of the nicest furniture makeovers I have ever seen. Well done!!!

  14. Awesome! I’m such a sucker for anything with fancy moldings and curved ornate details. Gold accents make me swoon. Lol Beautiful piece.

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