When I visited my cousin Oonagh’s flat this week unfortunately I couldn’t spend much time there as we both have lots of things to sort out before we leave the country on our various trips. We wanted to focus on simple changes that would make a big difference, so I came up with the idea of painting her kitchen chairs.
image from NY Times
I found this image on Pinterest and loved how the vibrantly coloured chairs added that extra brightness and really lift the room. Luckily, thanks to our tester pot swatching saga Oonagh had loads of testers left, including lots of pretty pastel pinks and purples from her initial bathroom paint ideas. So, we decided to paint the chairs with them, making this project essentially free!
The original chairs were a dark blue paint, but they were wooden which means they would be easy to paint. We begun by sanding the chairs (check out my guide to sanding for some helpful tips) to remove as much of the blue paint as we could. By the end of it, my hands looked like Smurf hands and were completely blue from the dust! Next, we wiped off the dust from sanding with a cheap dusting cloth from Poundland.
Oonagh came up with the great idea to paint the chairs two different colours to use as much of the testers as possible. So, we got out our tester pots and got stuck in!Here’s a little before and after! On the left, you can see how dark the original blue was. They are lovely chairs, but the blue was just too oppressive for a kitchen that should be filled with bright, warm colours. We began by painting the front of the chairs and one bar on each side of the chair. We let this dry overnight, then painted the backs and remaining bars. We also did a second coat on any bits that needed it as the pinks were quite pale.
We chose to go for pink, lilac, turquoise and blue for a few reasons. Firstly, they were most of the colours we had, except for our Coral tester. We also thought that they would work well together, tying in the pink shades of the walls with the blues in the tiles. As all of the colours are pale, they will add a lightness to what will be a very warmly coloured space after we finish painting.
When I next go down to London to visit, I’ll varnish the chairs to ensure that the paint doesn’t flake. To do that, I’ll use a clear satin wood varnish. Oonagh also has big plans to put cushions on the chairs to make them more comfy. For now, however, I think they look pretty good for a project that probably took about an hour in total painting time, and 12 hours to ensure everything had fully dried.
What do you think of our pastel chairs? Have you ever given any of your furniture a quick makeover? I’d love to hear from you!