Saturday, December 09, 2006

I'm a Mod Podge Kinda Girl

Hi Knitters!

Ok, I had to squeeze in one more Christmas hat I just finished. Manos makes some of the best colorways ever. The purples in this mix are glorious and they compliment each other to the utmost. Once again, I used the Stipey Stocking Hat pattern from Itty-Bitty Hats. A little ribbed matching scarf with poms for the ends is being worked up right now. This is for a dear friend of mine's grand-daughter named Piper. I love that name and she is as cute as can be with her white blond hair and rosy cheeks. I can just see her in these beautiful purples. I am getting down to the wire with my Christmas knitting and I may have to resort to shopping (the dread of it).

I promised awhile ago that I would talk about my coffee table. This is an antique table that was in terrible shape when I got it. It is oak, I think, and I gave it a good sanding to remove the finish a bit before I started working on it. Next, I primed the table covering every nook and cranny. Then I painted it in an ivory color.

When that dried I dragged the table outside and got out my handy electric sander. I started in on sanding all of the corners and edgings of the table until the original wood showed through. This table is unusually long and it has that weird octagon shape, so there are many corners and edges to work on. Next I used a brown stain to go over the ivory and sanded sections of the table to give it that antique look.

Banged up looking furniture is a plus at my house with everyone banging around all of the time. I have a big family in numbers and size! My husband is 6'5" and a couple of the kids are following in this suit. Nothing stays pristine for very long, which is why I like to refinish furniture to look used. Then I don't worry about it. With a big family there is no room in our house to have anything off limits and we are just a comfortable-type group anyway.

The fun part of the process came next. I had been collecting vintage luggage labels that I found in these little tins. I love stuff like this. The labels represent places from all over the world. Some stickers show hotels and some show vacation destinations. These were the perfect treatment for my table top. I was going to spread them out, leaving some of the paint sticking through, but then my son suggested overlapping them to create a denser surface. I thought that was a great idea.

I am a girl born in the 1960's and anything with the names mod and podge in the title is a friend of mine! I think decoupage is one of the top 3 crafts I enjoy. I actually stuck the stickers into place and then I applied several coats of Mod Podge to get a solid finish. I have used Mod Podge on many items in my house like lamp shades, sketch book covers, serving trays, my studio work tables and decorative bottles to name a few. I am thinking about Mod Podging an entire powder room's walls with either comics or maps, I can't decide. I think it would be really cool looking.

Anyway, back to the table, it is a show-stopper. I have it in the front room of my house so it is one of the first things you see when you come in and everyone loves it! Everyone asks about it and studies the labels. It is really fun. This table had been water-stained and taking up room in the basement for years, I had considered getting rid of it many times. This makes it even more gratifying to have it turn into a new piece of furniture in my home. On the table I keep an enormous suede-covered sketch book open and a pot of colored pencils ready for action. When people come over they can leave a sketch for us to enjoy. We've had lots of takers. My daughter and I spend a lot of time sketching in there, too.

Right after I made this table I bought the book Alterknits by Leigh Radford where she decoupaged a dress form with yarn labels. Now I have collected bags of yarn labels just waiting for another piece of furniture to cover with my beloved Mod Podge. I don't think I will cover my dress form because I like to pin things on it. But cover a piece of furniture? Oh yeah!

Mod Podge + me = friends forever.

best, susie

p.s. Now I am thinking about those yarn labels covering the powder room walls. Double oh yeah!