Saturday, February 4, 2012

Italian Desk and Child's Dresser ASCP

Welcome back if you are a reader - and thank you for checking out the hap's in TheSmithGarage. Check out Mrs. Smith's blog over at TheSmithHotel - I know, clever aren't we. I have started two new projects this weekend - even though I have several in progress already. Last Summer, Mrs. Smith and I picked up a really cool desk at a moving sale. It looked like it had been outside for some time, weathered and a few problems with the legs and drawers, but I knew it would be a beautiful piece someday, you gotta dream, right?

 Look at the detail on the legs, and of course the stamp "Made in Italy".

At one time I had entertained adhering a map to the top to cover the splits, I also thought about wood filler. But this evening - I decided to remove the first and - if possible - second layer of veneer. After about 15 minutes, I decided to put on the safety glasses. I just finished a book by Stephen Ambrose entitled "The Wild Blue" about the men and boys that flew B24s over Germany during WWII. The Fifteenth Air Force was stationed in Italy, and I am thinking this desk was made sometime shortly after their departure. Just seems to be from that time period.

Back to the safety glasses - wood chips were flying all over TheSmithGarage while using a hammer, a putty knife, and a flat bar that I had to sharpen with some of my "garage sale finds" steel files. A half-hour later:

Wow those Italians used a lot of glue. Look how the 1x2s are set on edge to give the desk rigidity across the span under that second layer of veneer. We will have to come back to this - but I expect a full recovery of this piece for some happy buyer - and it will be painted - pretty sure.

Now knowing that I really wanted to work on something that would show completion by the end of the weekend, I decided late tonight to put a coat of paint on a child's dresser Mrs. Smith had me pick up this week. In trying to think of a good color for a child's piece of furniture - I turned to my Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (ASCP) stash and chose the Provence Blue. Wow that stuff goes on beautifully, and let me tell you - anyone can use ASCP, it is pretty foolproof. Here is where we started:

Blurry pictures, huh? Sorry, using my Blackberry and it is somewhat dim in the house. Not in TheSmithGarage tonight - no. It was dipping below 40 degrees, and it just seemed right to bring it inside since everyone else is asleep already. And, ASCP is non-toxic, doesn't smell - so no one will know. After only an hour - here we are:

In the morning I will give it a sanding, waxing, throw on some knobs and update a finished product on TheSmithGarage blog.

Here is the finished product - very nice. I painted the plastic knobs with engine silver spray paint. It kind of  has a nickle plated look - which goes well with the blue/green hue.

Let me know what you think? Also, let me know if you have any comments on ASCP, better yet - if you have used CeCe Caldwell's paint - comment for sure. I want to know if you like CCCCP.

Mr. Smith


  1. Thanks for stopping by my blog :) I'm really looking forward to seeing more of your projects, looks good so far :)

    1. Thanks - I like your stuff so far as well. Is it cold in Canada?

  2. Looks great..Now you need to start linking these great pieces up to parties so others can see them also..