Do I have your attention? This Mermaid Chair is a showstopper isn’t she? She can’t help it…she’s a mermaid!
“I am a siren, and for my adoration of mankind, I have been caught in fishing nets one time too many. And in those fishing nets I have learned too many unfavorable things about human intentions and the lack of trust and goodwill; I’m not going to allow myself to be caught, anymore. Sirens do well at singing the sirens’ song and dragging vile people to their daths, and for good reason!” ~C. JoyBell
Hmmmmmm…..let’s just be mermaids!
This Mermaid Chair project was soooooooo much fun! It was NOT a commissioned project….but solely for blogging purposes and to serve as a creative outlet for ME! And it is the first of three mermaid pieces that will be featured here on Tracey’s Fancy this month! Heirloom Traditions Paint company did provide the materials for this project in hopes that I would get super creative and super excited and create something that would make all of us smile and long for more! Therefore this post contains links to these amazing products!
I started with this French provincial chair that has been sitting around my shop for over a YEAR! It had a personality even in its bland and outdated state….I just couldn’t do refined and fancy….I had to go the “whimsy” route….it’s my weakness….
I have known for months that I would be using this chair as a FAB project! FAB is a product created by Heirloom Traditions Paint company that they actually hold the pattern on. It primes AND seals fabric…allowing you to PAINT on the fabric without cracking or stiffness. For a creative person like myself….. this opens the door to a whole new world! The fabric on furniture becomes a blank canvas….and this my friends is where this Mermaid tale begins!
There are two versions of FAB….FAB clear and FAB tinted. I chose the tinted version to lay down the first coat on this Mermaid chair. I felt it was necessary to serve as a primer. The original fabric was light in color but heavy in print. I also knew that I would be following the FAB with a white paint and I might need the FAB with color to block some of the pink and gold. The photo above shows a full coat of FAB applied. The below photo shows a close-up shot of the fabric. I wanted you to see that I will NOT be blocking the pattern of the roses. Do I care? NO. Will it distract from my final design? In my opinion…NO. But I will be honest, I have had clients turn down certain chairs that I would be painting on because they couldn’t handle the idea of seeing the original pattern through the new paint design. I feel this is very subjective…..but it just doesn’t bother me!
I then coated the mermaid chair in TWO coats of Vintiques Chantilly (also by Heirloom Traditions Paint Company). It is important for me to say that I did give a quick sanding (once the paint was dry) on the fabric in between coats with a sanding block. This helps keep the finish flexible.
The prep work is over….it’s time to get F-F-F-FANCY! A pencil in my hand and a vision in my head…a few minutes on the clock….and the mermaid is born!
As much as I want to get busy with COLOR…I need to lay down my background pattern first. I find it really helps to keep WHIMSY grounded by adding classic stripes or harlequin or even animal print as a base. So I chose black (Raven by Vintiques) stripes on this piece….knowing this will offset and balance the crazy colors and pattern of the mermaid. I have included photos of the back of the mermaid chair and the seat of the mermaid chair…hoping you can follow my steps.
First step is to lay down your center piece which will be your center stripe (photo #1). I then use the same tape to lay down spacers on each side of that center stripe (photo #2). I then tape down another long piece of tape on each side of the spacers. This keeps your stripes even in width without the pain of measuring. Once all long stripes are taped you just remove the spacer pieces. I then “burnish” the edges of the tape with the same color as the base coat. This is a SURE-FIRE way to have perfect stripes on a FLAT surface such as walls and furniture. It seals off the tape and stops bleeding! But on a fabric surface??? Not so much! But I did it anyway (photo #3)……
I share with you the result once I removed the tape. Yes…you see BLEED…as expected with fabric even WITH the burnish technique. Don’t fret!!! Just use a small brush and the Chantilly and touch up those areas that the pesky black paint found its way through! We are off to an amazing start even with BLEED!
It’s color time folks! I could hardly stand the wait…..but it was worth it! I broke out another amazing product by Heirloom Traditions Paint! Aurora Staining Gels!!! This product is an actual stain that is tinted with brilliant pigment! The colors are rich and take to surfaces such as wood, fabric or chalk paint. It does not require a top coat, is no VOC’s, and washes off your hands with soap and water. They offer these in 20 bright and funky colors including 5 metallic choices. I chose this over paint for the color portion of this product for a reason! It is lighter and thinner than adding additional coats of paint. It literally is staining the paint that is already there. And since I am coating fabric….I felt the less build up the better! The color of the mermaid hair was done in Aurora Staining Gels Razzmatazz. It took to the chalk-painted fabric instantly!!! It was a beautiful marriage and had me so excited that I was already brainstorming my next project with these gels before I could finish the bright pink mane! I moved onto the body of the mermaid using a blend of ASG’s in Island Paradise and Frozen. Let me just tell you…these stains will boost your ego! They blend so beautifully that I felt like a REAL artist…not just a whimsical furniture painter! It was a beautiful THANG!
Once she was painted in full….I chose to go back with another ASG in Snow White for highlights. I used ASG Mellow Yellow for her upper body. The colors that you see were NOT enhanced one single bit with a filter….and were only ONE COAT! I am in love with this product and cannot believe I waited almost 9 months to try them!!!! I then outlined our pretty girl with the Vintiques RAVEN….and also painted the piping of the upholstery portion with the same color. She was so adorable….but I wasn’t satisfied. She needed sparkle!!!!! So I turned to my trusty little teensy weensy bottle of gold – Liquid Leaf … or “painters crack” as my friend Allison of Refunk My Junk refers to it. If you haven’t checked out this amazingly talented woman you are missing out!!! Check her out…..Refunk My Junk.
And I swear to you.…I heard SIRENS! She came alive!!!!
I added gold here…..
And we are almost there!
But I need to back up a bit….and explain. I totally forgot to photograph the painting of the body of the mermaid chair!!!! Yep! Just completely blanked! It was nothing to write home about….just the typical, normal uneventful use of Vintiques Paint (because it ROCKS and is dummy-beginner-proof). I chose the gorgeous aqua/turquoise blend called Tiffany! I felt it was bold enough to stand against the SIREN herself! And the gold accents against the Tiffany are pretty fabulous! I covered the frame with two coats of Tiffany using a 1″ wide artist brush (like this one). I then completed the frame with a single and final coat of Vintiques Gloss Top Coat.
Once the entire frame and mermaid design were completed, I was comfortable sealing the fabric. I used the CLEAR FAB for this final coat. It goes on slightly milky but dries completely clear. This protects the paint…and helps to keep it supple.
So easy. So fun. So unique. So worth it.
And here is the back of the Mermaid Chair …
You be the judge……
You can paint this Mermaid Chair! I promise! It’s not difficult! It’s JUST PAINT!!!! All you need is a little imagination! And great products! And I’ve made that easy for you by linking every single product that takes you directly to the site for purchase.
I’m here for you! Got questions??? Ask me! I’ll do whatever I can to encourage you….to inspire you….to try something just like this!
Here is a raw shot of MOST…. but not all of the products used. It just looked so pretty on my paint stained…glitter sprinkled work bench! I couldn’t resist the photo! (please note the corner of a fabulous work of rusted art that one of my sons had made for me….and the frame that my husband made for it…the men in my life rock).
But here they are in a much more professional lay out. Each and everyone of them.
If you want a Mermaid Chair of your own — get one here!
If you’ve made it this far….to the bottom of this very long post….I want to tell you how much I appreciate you! Thank you for the support…and for visiting my blog….and reading my post about my Mermaid Chair …and commenting so I know that my words are not just floating around out there in the darkness! If you want to read and see more in the future, Subscribe to My Blog Newsletter! Thanks!
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