I have always yearned for great studio space – but forever and a day I had to deal with little scraps of space to do my finishing and artwork. First I had a basement (dreary and light starved), then my studio was in my garage (better space – but still light was at a minimum)… then finally I was able to take over the space that was formerly our family room. It was a bit dark (northern exposure), so I put in 3 skylights and that helped a lot. But still, I made the space as light as possible by having just about everything in it be a creamy shade of pale yellow – the floors, the ceiling, the sofa and the furniture had to be a light buttery hue so that the room felt more light filled and spacious. My walls were treated with a fabulous authentic Venetian Plaster – and the shine from that helps to illuminate the room. To read about that finish (Venetian Plaster in general), go here.
But I had this great, spacious coffee table that I had found (and lucky for me it was on sale!!) and I always used it to spread out ideas for myself and clients. It’s a great size – at 51 inches long and 39 1/4 inches wide. But it was Dark – with a capital D.
I fell in love with it at first sight. It was an old Tibetan door that was transformed into a coffee table. I used it in my new great room for quite a while until I found something that suited that space better. Then the table was ushered in to my “new” studio space in the family room.
With its dark finish, you really couldn’t see the great carvings – the scrolls and the birds – in the metal inlays. And, in my usual style, I had books and a vase of flowers on it at all times – so who knew it had this great character?
So, in keeping with the pale color scheme of my new studio, I kept going with the priming and painting.
- I used Benjamin Moore All Purpose Primer
- Then 2 coats of Aqua Finishing Solutions Off White Setcoat as the base paint.
- For the decorative metal parts of the coffee table inlays I used a smooth texture product called StucoLux Metallic in Pale Gold. I put in on with a chip brush and let dry. Then I rubbed back with some fine sandpaper to expose some of the dark color underneath to antique it.
- Next, I antiqued the entire piece with a brown and gold glaze just to dirty up the finish.
- For a protective coat, I used Benjamin Moore’s All Clear Polyurethane as the final coat.
I had a little trepidation showing my raw space where everything happens. I am just not as neat and perfect as some ofthe other DIY design blogs – but I can only show you the reality (and this is on a good day!!!) of what my space looks like!
But – I love how the coffee table blends with everything in my studio (can you see how the project table above, which was white, now blends with the Venetian Plaster wall color?) I painted and antiqued everything with a similar baseboat and glaze. To read about how I antiqued the bookcase with faux leather inserts – that you can see in the mirror, go here. And, of course, that mirror was once black and I lightened, gilded and antiqued it!
The coffee table and the decor of the office work for me – right now. Though I have my eye on doing some more transformations to the space – so stay tuned! I don’t know why I am like this…but it’s in my blood to change things!
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