Monday, April 25, 2016

Spruce up for Spring

Recently, we were featured in At Home Magazine's Spring Edition. Read on to see what we had to say about decorating with florals this season!

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Chalk One Up for DIY Furniture Painting

Here at JMD, one of our favourite leisure-time hobbies is chalk-painting old or antique furniture pieces. It has definitely become one of the "hottest" trends in the DIY world as of late- and is a great way to give an old item new life! In our opinion, it's one of the most fun and inexpensive ways to refresh the feeling of your house.. and you don't need to break the bank to do it! Read on to see what tips and tricks our resident chalk-paint expert, Julia Estey, has up her sleeves to help you get your project just right. 

STEP ONE: Pick your Piece

There are plenty of great places to pick up used or antique furniture around town. Some of our favourites are

  • Used Victoria & Craigslist - try looking at the "Free" section, we've found lots of goodies here!
  • Loi's Secondhand Store on the corner of Quadra & Cloverdale - there's a wide variety of items at afforable prices!
  • The Restore - this is a great place to not only get furniture, but hardware and other accessories as well! And the proceeds for anything you buy go to Habitat for Humanity, so you're helping out people in need at the same time!
  • Kay's Corner - Another great second hand shop in the heart of Cook Street village. Loads of unique items
  • And of course - garage sales!

STEP TWO: The Tools

These will vary from project to project, but generally, if you are refinishing a piece of furniture, you will need

  • At least one paint brush (we recommend Annie Sloane, and you can get these from most art supply stores)
  • Sandpaper or a sanding sponge (the sponge will give your finished piece a "brushed" look)
  • Chalk paint (refer to STEP THREE for recipe & additional ingredients)
  • Paint can and paint stick for mixing (you can grab these at any local paint store)
  • Min Wax (once the paint dries, you will want to apply this to avoid staining and flaking)
  • A staple gun (if you are reupholstering an item)
  • Pliers (to remove existing staples or nailheads)
  • Any additional hardware or fabric that you would like to use to spruce up your piece!
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STEP THREE: The recipe

The key to getting the right overall look is all in the mix. Julia recommends

  • 2 Tablespoons of Calcium Carbonate powder (you can get this at Borden Mercantile on Borden Street, here in Victoria)
  • 2 Tablespoons of plaster of Paris (Home Depot or Rona will have this)
  • 2 Tablespoons of water
  • 2 Cups of Latex Paint (Try Home Depot, Rona, or Walmart)
Pour everything into your empty paint can. Mix well. Once you've finished the project, cover the can and store in a cool dry area. If you notice the mixture start to separate, give it a good stir and it will come back to life!

STEP FOUR: The Process

Once you've chosen your furniture piece, mixed your paint, removed any existing nailheads or fabric, and gathered your tools, it's time to get painting! At this point, you probably have a pretty clear idea in your mind about the aesthetic you are trying to create. 

If you want your item to look shabby chic, apply the paint directly on top of the existing paint or varnish. In this instance, the paint will wear over time and you will be able to see the original finish through your new application. This is will give you a very rustic, Farmhouse look.

Conversely, if you are looking to create a solid, all-over colour, you should thoroughly sand down your item. Doing so will prep the wood to take the new paint coats you will be applying, and you are less likely to notice any chipping over time.

Lastly, if you lightly scuff your item to remove the shine (trying using a sanding sponge), you can create an antiqued or brushed effect that is truly stunning.

STEP FIVE: Finishing Touches

We highly recommend that after you have let your paint set and dry, that you wax it to prevent any future damage. We would hate for you to go through all the trouble of creating a beautiful furniture piece, only to have it damaged by water rings or coffee stains.

Now is also the time to reupholster - We are loving neutral linens right now and you can pick a piece up at any fabric store. To apply, stretch the fabric tightly across the area you wish to cover (you may need an extra set of hands for this), and use the staple gun to fasten firmly in place. Not comfy enough? Canadian Tire sells camping foam that works great as extra seat padding. You can also purchase nailheads from Michaels to spruce up the look of your furniture... they come in a multitude of finishes and are a nice way to accent the fabric you've chosen.

Here are a few Before & After photos to inspire you!



Turns out chalk isn't just for kids anymore. Happy Painting!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

The Blog is Back!

Phew!  What a busy few months we have had here at JMD. We took a little hiatus from the blog to focus on our projects, but we are back with a bang and can't wait to show you what we have been working on.

First up on the docket, check out the design challenge that our own very talented designer, Samantha Ritchie, completed with Western Living Magazine. The task was to create a bedroom design centered around a signature piece - the gorgeous new Edlyn bed from Anthropologie. Sometimes it can be a little intimidating to envision a space around an item as bold as this teal leather bed - but we love how Sam kept the accessories neutral and brought in additional patterns and textures as accents. 

Check out the link below to read more, as well as see the creations of two other designers - Dexter Dolores & Alykhan Velji!