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Creating Calypso with Velvet Finishes

Hello World!

Words cannot describe the excitement I feel to be able to bring you Calypso - This gorgeous vintage sideboard reimagined using Velvet Finishes products. Good grief, this girl is knocking my socks off! I just keep looking at her and thinking "Did I do that?" (no Steve Urkel pun intended).

Without further ado, allow me to introduce you to Calypso!

Creating Calypso wasn't as complicated as she may seem. The Velvet Finishes line makes painting furniture easy as pie. But then, how easy is pie? I suppose easy enough if easy pie means walking into Marie Calendar's and buying one. Yep. It's about that easy.

To get this look, you will need:

• One piece in its birthday suit

VF Ready

• VF Colour in Tranquil (teal), Captivating (rust), and Prestigious (brown)

• VF Gold Metallic

• VF Dark Glaze

• VF Protect

So let's get to it!

Step 1: Cleaning & Prep

I started with a bare piece. As beautiful as it seemed, some SERIOUS cleaning was necessary before I could even begin to dress her. I hosed her down with TSP because a basic wipe down wasn't going to cut it. After letting it sit for a few minutes, I began the very laborious and disgusting task of cleaning her.

I can't stress this enough - PREP YOUR PIECES! You can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still a pig underneath. No offense, Miss Piggy.

Eventually, the job got so hairy I had to break out the big guns - steel wool. Using a super fine steel wool pad, and more TSP, I made about three passes on this piece before my rag stopped turning putrid colors.

Next, I used Velvet Finishes Ready to give her a final pass of cleaning as well as degloss this girl. I was surprised that even more grime came off still! After this step, she was just the way I like my pre-paint pieces: Dull and lackluster.

I should note I also gave her a quick sand using 220grit to smooth out some rough patches and areas where years of wear and tear were evident.

Step 2: Paint!!

I am in a very committed relationship with my sprayer. After masking off the areas I didn't want to paint, I started my favorite part of the process with two coats of Tranquil, Velvet Finishes' GORGEOUS shade of teal (which happens to be their colour of the month!). Get you some. It's a stunning hue!!

As if that wasn't fun enough, I start getting into adding the two other heart-beat-skipping colours I chose for this piece! Check out how beautifully these shades compliment one another!

I chose to use a blend 'n wipe technique (not that I knew I would be doing it this way going into it, lol!). Most of the time I just dive in and see what unfolds as I go. I find my best work is birthed out of a lack of inhibition and a willingness to go with the flow. It's a liberating way to paint! Here's the how-to:

Once I was done with all the colour, I removed the masking materials to unveil my finished beauty, or so I thought...

As awesome as this looked, I felt it was still missing something. Snippets of my inner, impressively scattered monologue went something like this:

"She seems a bit juvenile. She needs maturing."

"Girl, you sure is fly."

"To keep going or to quit while I am ahead. That is the question."

"Can I keep her??"

"Maybe if I add a little salt..."

"[singing] Walk like an Egyptian..."

"Eureka! I've got it!"

That last one was when a notion came to mind....

Step 3: Finishing Touches

Unfortunately, Mother Nature had an attitude this day and documenting my journey ceased to an abrupt halt. I had to finish her up inside and in tight quarters due to the elements outside taking on the shape of a monsoon apocalypse. Good thing I did, because I am sure Farmers had fresh source material for their next "We know a thing or two because we've seen a thing of two" commercial campaign. The storm ravaged our city!

Reeling it back in...

I grabbed my supply of Velvet Finishes Dark Glaze and slathered it on Miss Calypso in fast and furious form, working in small, manageable sections and wiping back the glaze where I didn't want it. I focused on the framework of the piece rather than glazing her in entirety so the teal maintained its piercing allure while the other sections melted into themselves.

I don't have a video on this process, however here is a short video of how I used Velvet Finishes Dark Glaze on a previous piece, using the same tecnique:

Lastly, I grabbed my Velvet Finishes Gold Metallic and dabbed on the shimmery goodness in sporadic, yet strategic places, putting emphasis again on the framework rather than the piece in entirety. It is at this time I fell in love with my piece all over again! YES! Now we are talking!

With my paint complete, I finished staining the wood top and base. The next day, I dragged my piece out to spray her down with several coats of semi-gloss poly. Normally I would use Velvet Finishes Protect to seal, however I opted for a shinier finish this time around because Calypso needs to shine bright like a diamond. The glossier finish makes these bold colors pop in vivid fashion. But I have to say, if I wasn't married to my sprayer, I would have used the Protect because it's super easy to use and doesn't create those nasty streaks you sometimes get when you use a brush with poly.

Here is a quick video of how easy Protect is to use:

Step 4: Conclusion

I am absolutely ecstatic with how Calypso turned out! My goal was to honor both the piece and the Velvet Finishes product line in a way that is both unique and trendsetting! If I may say so myself, I do believe I nailed it!

I hope you found something useful here. Stay tuned for more adventures! Up next, how to paint a dresser while skydiving! Just kidding.

Until next time!

- Bianca

  • Interested in owning Calypso? Click here!

  • For more information on why I love Velvet Finishes, click here.

  • To purchase or view Velvet Finishes products, click here.


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Peoria, Arizona, United States