It’s so wonderful when our customers share with us their creations…It’s even better when they share their techniques!

This beautiful piece was created by Franca in Australia and she shares with us her steps and thoughts on the makeover:


“The secretariat was a reproduction piece, quite ordinary and dark so it was perfect for a makeover.

13055394_980884368691354_2698738720222631409_n1. A coat of Zinser BIN shellac based primer was first applied to the secretariat to avoid any stain bleeding through the chalk paint layers.

2. As the original piece contained scroll work on the edges, the EFEX appliques chosen complemented the existing scrolls beautifully, inclusive of the beading border on the front of the desk. The EFEX appliques were then glued on.

(Kristen’s note: Franca used our R61 rosette as a central feature and surrounded it with a rectangle of T70 trim. The legs were dressed up with our L1 mouldings and two L1 mouldings were used on the top and bottom – cut along the midline and used ‘head to head’ – as scrolls. )


3. This was followed by two coats of Websters Chalk paint in a custom blue.

4. To add further depth, a 50 / 50 wash of the same custom blue and a grey was then applied sparingly whilst wiping off excess with a rag. The piece was then finished with clear & dark wax where required.

5. The original handles were painted in acrylic silver. Some of the same silver was then lightly dry brushed over the ornate EFEX appliques to give them a shimmer.13000355_980884345358023_7716287789297194458_n

In conclusion, From Ordinary to Extraordinary!!!”

Thank you so much Franca for sharing this piece and your steps with us. We love what you’ve done!