Cling On brushes!

If you paint a lot of furniture- you will love these brushes.  Cling On brushes are manufactured by a company in Holland.  They are my brush of choice now.

So many reasons why…..

first of all they are a small company.  I mean- they are not manufactured in China -they are a niche brand.

There are five different types.  Round, oval, flat, a long handle with an angled brush(not in photo) and the new shorty.

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There is also a storage bucket.

These brushes are synthetic hairs coated in teflon.  They are also held in place with resin, not glue, so no bristles fall out.  This I can attest to!  I have all types at the ready- that I use every day and no hair has ever fallen out!

Because of the teflon coating the paint just glides off the brush.  Because the hairs are long and synthetic- they leave a super smooth finish.  (paint quality helps with that too.)

Why the bucket?

Once you are finished using the brush you can hang it in water for long periods of time without worrying about damage.  It is recommended only to hang up to the cord- which is there to keep the bristles in shape.  So the next time you use it- simply run it under the tap and the paint comes off so easily.

Here is an action shot 😉

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I use all of them but I think my favourite is the new shorty.  It is flat with rounded edges- which the one in the above photo.

I think you can buy these at many small business paint shops now.  The prices are not outrageous- especially when the brush should last you about five years……if not longer!

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It looks as though I have fallen off the face of the earth!!

I didn’t…..

If you have a blog you will know how much work is involved in keeping up with it.  Especially if you just do it as a hobby and not as an income- like me!!  I guess when somebody is paying you to write a post it gives you a bit of a push??

Anyway- my last post has me explaining my move from one shop to another.  I am so happy at my new location!  It is great!

I have brought in a few new lines of paint that many are familiar with.  If you remember I started out with Annie Sloan’s paint.  I used that for a while but then decided to switch to a premium quality brand called Pure&Original from Holland.  I also sell another chalk paint called Everlong–which just changed its name……to Sarah Jayne’s maybe?  Anyway- just selling of my existing stock of that brand.

I also started selling Fusion Mineral paint from Canada!  Yeah, Canada!!  This is an acrylic paint that is manufactured by Homestead House from Toronto.  IT is my new love!!  I also sell Miss Mustard Seed milk paint which is also manufactured by Homestead  House.  I am sure everybody has seen her blog!

So I have three types of paint now- which is amazing because I don’t believe that one paint can do everything……For example- if you want authentic chippy furniture- Mustard Seed is the brand to use…  If you want a super smooth finish then I will always recommend Fusion.  If you want to add a decorative finish then go with the chalk paint…..this is just my general rule- others may have different opinions 🙂

So….let’s see.  Here are a few photos.  This is Mustard Seed.

This is Fusion.

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I haven’t painted a lot with Mustard Seed- I did just finish a very large cabinet that I painted pink for my shop- I am very happy with it.  I love the look and surprisingly enough there are quite a few techniques that can be done with milk paint.

There are also waxes, top coats and a hemp oil as well as metallic paints and waxes……I think I am forgetting something!!

Anyway…..so this keeps me busy!

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It has been a while….again.

I have just moved my shop.  For the second time.  So this is a funny story…..about three months ago the landlord to my shop called my husband and said “we need to talk”.  Both of us knew I would be moving out.  Basically, somebody came into my shop, decided they liked the size of it and offered the landlord more rent per month.  So the landlord asked if we would match the offer and stay, if not we need to leave….so I left.  A week before a friend of mine, from South Africa but living here in Warsaw, came into my shop saying she wanted to get together and pick my brain about retail in Warsaw and she told me she was going to be opening a shop with decorative items just down the street.

This is going to be long…..

Anyway…..the place she was going to move to I had looked at for warehouse space about two years earlier when I was the country distributor for Annie Sloan, but since I stopped selling the brand it never panned out.  A lovely couple that lived in Detroit for 25 years own this group of warehouse spaces in Konstancin and she was taking over a space that sold fire extinguishers.  So after we gave the notice to move out- I contacted her and asked if there is space in the same complex and if she would mind if I moved there.  She was thrilled because she wants to change it from warehouse into something more community focused and artsy.

So new lease signed and I had three months to organize my stuff.  Last week I finally moved into the new space…..after some renovations and now I am digging myself out of painted furniture hell!!

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This last photo is from today.  I can finally see the floor.  After all this work I am so glad to be here.  As much as I loved being in the old place- I felt as though I was stuck in a bit of a rut.  Another thing- I sell Pure&Original paint which is marketed more for whole home and not just for furniture- I was finding it very hard explain how this new paint works- so now I have samples on the walls!  I will always sell painted furniture- in fact I have different paints for that—-Fusion and Miss Mustard Seed- both from Canada, but now I can show how Fresco and Marrakesh wall paints looks!

And here is a bit of karma for you.  The landlord and the new tenant couldn’t agree on the terms of their lease- so my old shop is sitting empty!

Anyway- signs going up on the outside tomorrow as I continue to “curate” my collections!

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Kolo market!!

This post has been a long time coming!  This is one of my favourite places in Poland.  Kolo, which means “wheel” in Polish is an open air market full of antiques.  And you can find almost anything here…..

For example:

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Boxes and boxes of treasures.  I love searching through everything.  Some things are a bit disturbing though- Nazi war memorabilia is a bit unnerving -but it is part of Polish history.  This place has its own culture.  Many of the vendors have been selling their stuff for decades and they all know each other.  There are people that travel from all parts of Poland with a full car of stuff to sell.  In the summer time this place is packed…..so I have a feeling I am not the only one that loves it here!

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Painting leather!

So I had a delivery of antiques and other fine things to my shop in Warsaw from Switzerland!  Very exciting- just like Christmas!!

I spy with my little eye some pretty great stuff!!

So when you get all this in one day…where to begin?

Well….I started with this:

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So this is an old French chair with a leather seat and back that has a pattern pressed into the leather.

I don’t believe in painting everything.  If the wood is nice, if the condition is good and if I love it without paint then I definitely won’t paint!  But this chair needed paint.  It was sad, damaged and needed a new outlook!

I decided to use Pure&Original colour Evening Shadow.  It is a lovely light grey colour.  I cleaned the chair first- and then I painted everywhere- even the leather!

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This was after one coat.  After the second coat I decided to add a little colour to highlight some of the details in the leather….which of course you can’t see in the photo!!

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Anyway…this is the final result:

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I did distress it a bit with sandpaper, in fact, I distressed the leather too much so I had to repaint in some spots- but luckily this is no big deal when you use P&O paints!  I also finished with a layer of white wax.  I really wanted to soften the look a bit and adding white wax does a nice job.  The details on the leather are clearer and this tired old chair has a new outlook!

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Ever heard of a “Bullet Journal”?

I am on Pinterest every single day.  For inspirations, to see what is trending in design and fashion as well as collecting recipes.  Yesterday I cam across something called a Bullet Journal.  The first time I had heard of this was yesterday and it immediately peaked my curiosity.

Let me just say that I am not a journal, diary or day planner keeper and I never have been.  I did have a day planner a few years ago that contained addresses and payments received for shipping of paint orders but when I stopped my online shop….the day planner stopped too.

I write things on pieces of paper or note books that are all over my shop.  Highly productive, I know. 🙂

So, I clicked on this link for a Bullet Journal which took me to a video which explained how to do it.

 

It is kind of genius, actually.  A cahier (for the Canadians out there) and a few pens and you are ready to go.

This is mine:

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I have seen so many blogs that add so much detail- some of them are quite amazing!  For example:

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Both of these are from http://www.sublimereflection.com.  They are amazing- but quite honestly, I don’t have time for this.  These pages are like works of art.  I paint furniture, do upholstery, sew…….I don’t need so much detail in my journal, but apparently there is something called “minimalist bullet journal”…..which is what I am going with.

I will start tomorrow.  I have just set it up, added a few items and now I have plans to be so organised!!

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Just one photo!

I have slowly been updated our house now that I sell Pure & Original paints.  Everything was painted in various hues of beige….and I am tired of it.  We have changed a few things, new brick wall, new finish on the fireplace, new colour of sofa, new curtains, new carpet, new upholstered dining chairs…..and now I have started on the wall colour in the living room.

This is Fresco Lime paint in Warm Grey.

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The concept of the paint is “The Charm of Natural Colours”  so everything is soft and muted.  There are so many amazing colours it is hard to choose.  Can you see the texture?  This is how the paint works.  Various tones and shade of colour happen naturally.  I love it!

Now on to the next!!

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