Monday, April 12, 2010

The Finishing Line

A High Point Market Countdown ~ “Details in Design” ~ #3

It has been my experience, if I ask almost any man about painting over a stained wood finish, it will elicit a facial expression somewhere between shock and horror.  I’ve witnessed this, firsthand, in my own household – and I’m an interior designer!  (I emphasized the “I’m” as it doesn’t seem to carry much weight in the opinion department.)  Nevertheless, if one sees it already applied by the manufacturer, well then, it must be perfectly acceptable.  I do want to offer a disclaimer . . . I’m not suggesting painting over any precious antique or artifact.  I would certainly defer to the advice of the Keno brothers before lifting a brush to Napoleon’s grandmother’s Recamier!

I did notice, at the fall High Point Market, painted or special finishes were popping up all over the place.  I would imagine we’ll see this trending even deeper at the spring show.  People are long past the concept of purchasing suites of furniture.  It’s more about the process of collecting and layering rooms.  Painted pieces, or even pieces incorporating exotic woods and finishes, are a way to add interest and whimsy.  We always can use a bit more whimsy, in my opinion.  Who wants to live in a stuffy space?

Oscar de La Renta - Cloud

I love this line-up of chairs from Century’s Oscar de la Renta collection.  Wouldn’t you just expect to see a rainbow of colors against the “Cloud” finish?

Councill Jaden

This étagère from Councill Furniture sizzles in the color “Pepper”.


Metallic finishes will continue to be strong.  This French style chest, from Currey & Company, would be so “oooo la la” against lacquered walls in aubergine. 

Casablanca_6_drawer_3_drawer_1 (2)

These chests from Shine by S.H.O. demonstrate how a change of finish gives a whole new vibe to the same design.  One is in a lacquered white and the other is in a natural cerused white oak veneer.  (A cerused finish is very much the same as a “limed” finish.  An open grained wood has a special finish applied, in white or grey tones, where the remainder of the wood tone is allowed to show through.  See my recent newsletter tab for an article on this technique.)

cerused oak copper leaf elm burl zebra wood silver leaf

Here are some examples of finishes and wood species, which are used to create little jeweled pieces of furniture.


A spoon foot, cabriole leg is often found in more traditional furniture pieces.  Look at how this splash of sunshine changes ones perspective!  Even with a deep, mohair cover, whimsy lives on.  (And you know how I feel about whimsy!)

Wishing you colorful cheers!  Wanda

1 comment:

DesignTies said...

I LOVE those rainbow-coloured chairs!! So fresh and fun :-) I totally agree with you, every room needs a bit of whimsy or something unexpected. It makes things more interesting :-)

The silver French style chest is beautiful. It would be perfect in my dining room :-)

Kelly @ DesignTies