SK's Two Dozen French Poppies

Musty, Ugly, But Sturdy.

UPDATE: The Graphics Fairy (my favorite spot) has featured my Two French Poppies at:

Thank you Graphics Fairy. SK

Let's begin by stating a very clear fact. These were solid wood framed, but the most disgusting old rust colored velvet fabric you can imagine. Soooo.....
Busting out of the box again to see if I can create beauty from a sow's ear.

The previous upholsterer did an amazing job when upholstering these chairs. I am not an expert at reupholstery so I didn't want to mess with tucks and sewing.

So custom chalk paint it is...

If you are not familiar with painting fabric, this might be a very alien concept. There are many ways to paint fabric and upholstery. The method I chose is very simple. Wet fabric and keeping it damp throughout the painting process. This is called wet-on-wet painting. There are fabric mediums you can buy, but I have found they don't keep my fabric any softer than just keeping the fabric wet. This finished project was meant to feel and look like watercolor paper. It is smooth to the touch but not velvet anymore. Imagine touching a  painters canvas.

The paint does not crack when dry, because of the technique of scrubbing the paint into the damp fabric. And as many layers of wet-on-wet paint as needed to achieve the look you want. I also paint in direction of the nap of the fabric.
With flat paint mixed with powdered chalk, I custom make my own chalk paint colors. Keeping the old fabric damp, I use a really old brush to scrub the colors into the fabric. Each coat needs to be lightly sanded between coats. Keeping the fabric damp as I paint each additional coat. This chair took four coats to cover the rusty colored old velvet.

I did not sand the last coat of white. I wanted to use a watercolor technique and the resulting rough coat of white chalk paint gave me the perfect surface.

The backs of each chair are painted with a black chalk paint. I use a painters tape to block off even stripes. I then painted the edges of the tape with black chalk paint this helps seal the tape.

When the black is cured I painted each stripe white. I painted three coats of white. With watered down paints, I start to make large splotches of color, knowing these will eventually be the foundations of my flowers and leaves.
As I finished each flower I added dimension with light and dark accents.

 I created a larger stripe on the back of each chair. With contrasting paints, the French love note starts on one chair and is completed on the second chair.

The final "feel" of the upholstery on these particular chairs is like painted canvas. They might  feel like outdoor canvas.                                                                   They will not crack or chip. Ever. They are also impervious to stains or spills.  Just a damp cloth to clean up any little messes.

You might think they were an outdoor fabric.
The wood arms and legs are painted with Modern Masters Carbon Black. Then finished with a high gloss top coat for durability.

Thanks again Modern Masters.
Thanks to The Graphics Fairy 
Thanks to :  for reposting these pretty little darlings.

Thanks for visiting. sk on elderberry


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