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French Provincial Mixed Media Desk

For those of you who have seen my other posts, you know that I use stain as my medium in creating furniture art.

I love the French Provincial style and recently came across a gorgeous dining room set at a great price because the elderly couple had to move from their home. It was actually rather sad when we went to pick it all up, as I could see the sadness on their faces as I was taking away many years of love - I imagined the lifetime of holiday dinners around that table. As I was leaving, the daughter pointed out a desk and chair that was also that style and asked if I would be interested in taking it - they would let me have it since I was taking so much off their hands. WOW!! I jumped at the offer (and secretly felt a little guilty).

Oh, if you could have seen all of the fabulous grandfather and old antique clocks this couple had. Absolutely to die for!!

ANYWAY, back to the desk. I came up with a design I wanted to do for the top. I wanted to have a mixed-media look to it, so I knew it would have to be done in layers.

I painted the base with Wise Owl Vintage Duck Egg and the top in Heirloom Traditions Manor House. And then got started on my layers. I believe there were 8 or more layers to the top.

I started with a beehive stencil (this is the ONLY stencil that was used in this work of art). I placed it randomly on the top and then put a wash over it of the Manor house paint.

The next layers were painting damask in a metallic paint (which, in the end, you couldn't tell it was metallic) and covered that with several layers of a cross hatch method of paint. You can see more info on how I do this method here.

This is a close up of the cross hatch pattern.

At this point, I was afraid you wouldn't be able to see enough of the beehive in the end, so I added a few more random beehives.

Another layer or two of cross hatch.

And then, I added the first French persuasion to the piece.. the Eiffel Tower. This was done with stain.

And now for the top layer of art. I started with the designs and then added paint where I wanted the color to be. I wasn't particular about the paint, as the stain that will go over the paint will make these pop with dimension and depth!

And then it was the final hour (or 8) of adding the stain to the designs.

I added the French Bee as the second French persuasion to this piece.

While I was doing all of this, my mind was thinking of other things I could do... So while the stains and paints were drying on the top I was at work on the front and sides. For the front, I added some white daisies.

For the smaller side, I stained some butterflies, and for the larger side I did a bee trellis ~ the bees were done with stain and the "trellis" was done with gold paint.

OK, let's see it all come together...

I also reupholstered the seat in a coordinating fabric.

I hope you have enjoyed this transformation! Please continue to follow along with me as I breathe new life into the broken pieces I find!

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