diy fish stamp painting

Fish Stamp Painting {DIY}

Living on the coast, I’m constantly inspired by unique beach art.  Of course it’s mostly art I could never afford, but that’s why its called inspiration ;)  A few months ago, I came across this amazing piece of art at a local shop, it was a gorgeous painting of a fish.  When I inquired, it turned out that the artist actually took a (dead, eeek!) fish, dipped it in paint and then stamped it on a canvas.  Now this had me thinking…I had to try to recreate this myself!  First, let me preface by saying I am not an artist by any sense of the word, I can just barely draw a decent stick figure on a good day.  This is why a “stamp” painting appealed to me, it seemed perfect!  Except for one part, the real fish…I just could not bring myself to use a real fish.  So for weeks I searched and searched for the perfect rubber fish to use on my painting.  I finally found it when I turned into a fish store on a whim one day.  The awesome staff just so happened to have a rubber fish sitting on their register that they graciously offered up to me when I told them about my project, it was perfect!  I went home and started on my fish stamp art right away and it turned out better than I could have imagined, here’s my Fish Stamp Painting DIY…

Fish Stamp Painting {DIY}

Gather up:

one rubber fish, try ordering one online (or a real fish if your up for a challenge!)

a sheet of poster board (I chose black and blue paper for my prints)

paint (use a contrasting color to the poster board, I used white paint)

a small paint brush (for touching up spots and applying paint to the fish)

Method:

Set up the poster board and prepare your fish for it’s task.  This can get messy, so lay down paper to protect any surfaces.

Using a paint brush, apply a generouso layer of paint to one side of the fish.  Make sure to fill in all of the spots you want to appear on your print.

Flip the fish over and lay it down on the poster board.  Be careful not to drag it, this will smug the paint.

Carefully pick the fish up off the paper.  Use your paint brush to touch up any spots that did not stick.  You’ll have to use the best of your artistic ability here ( I really had to dig deep for this one!)  Let the fish dry for a bit, then use two colors of paint (I chose black and yellow) to paint on the fish’s eye.  This is just two circles, that’s art I can handle.

Allow your fish to dry, then sit back and marvel at your work of art!  I ended up with three prints, two single fish prints on black, and one double fish print on blue.  These prints now hang proudly on either side of my fireplace :)

 

diy-frosted wine glasss

Funky Frosted Wine Glasses [DIY]

There’s nothing I love more than mixing up a nice refreshing skinny cocktail on a Saturday afternoon. The best part about experimenting with unique drink combinations is enjoying the end result in a fancy, fun cocktail glass… Because sometimes the glass you sip from is just as important as the drink itself! I fell in love with a pair of frosted cocktail glasses I came across the other day, so I decided I had to make some for myself using a couple old boring wine glasses I had at home!  diy-frosted wine glasses

DIY Frosted Wine Glasses

step 1

Start with two glasses of your choice, I chose to use bubble base wine glasses (which I LOVE drinking cocktails from =) ).  Next, you’ll need a small bottle of Deco Art’s Frost Gloss Enamel paint, along with two colors of Deco Art’s Gloss Enamel paint and of course, a small tipped paint brush.

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  step 2

Use a small tipped paint brush to create a design around the rim of your glass.  My artist skills are extreamly limited so I painted a simple zig-zag pattern ;)  Next, I painted the stem of my wine glass in the same color.

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step 3

Now that you’ve added a little color and funky design to your glasses, it’s time to frost them!  Creating frosted glass is super simple with Deco Art’s Frost Gloss Enamel paints.  Simply fill in all the areas you’d like to frost with a light coat of paint.  I chose to frost the base and body of my glass…

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The only area I didn’t frost was the rim above the painted zig-zag…

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Once you’ve got your cocktail glasses looking good, go ahead and bake them in the oven at 275 degrees for 30 minutes.  This will make the finish dishwasher safe!

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diy-frosted wine glasss

new jordan sig

tooth-fairy-pillow-unique-whale1

DIY Tooth Fairy Pillow-Wally Whale [tutorial]

There are many fun traditions I miss from my childhood, waiting up at night for Santa to come, waking up to a basket full of chocolate from the Easter Bunny, and of course leaving notes for the Tooth Fairy under my pillow with every tooth I lost.  The angst of waiting to find out what the tooth fairy had left me in the morning was almost unbearable!  It’s the memories of traditions like these that inspire me to create fun DIY’s like today’s “Wally the Whale” Tooth Fairy Pillow!  Not only was this whale pillow fun to make, it was made with lots of love for my future nephew who will be born this August :)

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“Wally the Whale” Tooth Fairy Pillow [Tutorial]

GATHER UP:

step 1

Deco Art’s Ink Effect paints are great because they allow you to paint any image onto a regular piece of paper, then transfer onto fabric simply by ironing! The first step in the project is to paint a picture of a whale onto a standard white piece of paper (I used graph paper because it was all I had).  Paint the whale the same size that you want your pillow to be.  

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Use this template if you’re working with standard 8.5″ x 11″ piece of paper.  Simply click on the image, save it to your computer, then print it out as a full page.  I created this template for the whale I painted =)

 

whale pillow-template-diy step 2

Allow your painting to dry for about 20 minutes (or until it’s dry to the touch).  Now it’s time to transfer your painting to the fabric you selected (I used a cream colored linen fabric).  Place a piece of cardboard down on a flat surface (this will catch any bleed through), then the fabric with the painting face down on top of it.  Iron the painting on top of the fabric, this will begin the heat transfer.  Continue to iron for about 2 minutes until you can clearly see the painting transferred onto your fabric.

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Next, use a pair of fabric scissors to cut out the whale shape.  You need two sides for your pillow, so make sure to double up the fabric to cut out the pillow’s back as well.  Leave 1/2″ around the outside of the painted area.

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step 3

Now that we’ve created the whale pillow shape, its time to stitch it up!  Flip the front and back of the pillow sides around with the good sides facing in (the painted side of the fabric should be facing in).  Then, take it to a sewing machine and stitch all around the outside of the pillow, leaving a small 2-3″ section open at the top of the head (this is where we will stuff it, and hat will eventually sit).

Once you’ve sewed around the outside of the whale, flip it right-side-out and stuff with polyester pillow fill.  Then stitch up the open area on the head!

tooth fairy pillow-whale 18 step 4

Now the body of the whale pillow is complete, set it aside while we move onto the whale’s hat!  Cut out three squares of fabric, each about 6″ in length, into the shape of the whale’s hat.  Use the template below for tracing and cutting out your whale pillow’s hat.  Simply click on the image then print.

whale pillow hat template

step 5

Now that you’ve cut out the whale’s hat shape from three small pieces of fabric, we’ll start with creating the pocket that will hold the lost tooth and gift from the Tooth Fairy!  Fold over the top of one of the fabric pieces and stitch it across.  This will be the top of the pocket.

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step 6

Lay the pocket piece you just stitched on top of another piece of of the cut.  You will be flipping this inside out after stitching, so make sure the clean side of the stitched pocked is facing inward.  Stitch all around the outside of the pocket, attaching both pieces together, make sure not to stitch the top pocket opening!  Your hat should look like the photo below after this step.

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Now flip the pocket right-side-out…I know the corners on my hat are far from perfect, but we’ll look at it as ”added character” ;)

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step 7

Now we need to attach the pocket portion of the hat to what will become the back of the hat.  Flip the pocket over (with the pocket facing down) and lay it on top of the back of the hat.

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Now stitch around the outside of the pocket, attaching it to the hat’s back.  Make sure to leave a small (approx. 2″) section open on the bottom of the hat for flipping it back around and stuffing it with fill.  Again, my sewing skills are seriously lacking, but trust me, this won’t effect the end result ;)
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Now, go ahead and flip the hat back so it’s right-side-out…

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See, now my horrid stitching job isn’t so noticeable anymore!

step 8

Stuff the hat with pillow fill through the opening that you left on the bottom.  You’ll notice that the opening I left is much larger than what I originally left…I removed some threads and widened the opening to get more fill in. 

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After stuffing the hat, stitch the bottom back up!

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step 9

I decided that I wanted my whale to have a funky red and cream striped hat!  To paint the whale’s hat I used Deco Art’s So Soft Fabric Paint.  tooth fairy pillow-whale 10
For this step, simply use a small paint brush to paint stripes (or whatever design you choose) onto the whale’s hat.  Let dry for about an hour.

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step 10

Last, but not least, attach the hat to the whale pillow!  You might be able to use a sewing machine for this, but I hand stitched it…you’ve seen my limits when it comes to using a sewing machine ;)

whale tooth fairy pillow hat

….there you have it folks, your new Whale Tooth Fairy Pillow!

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tooth fairy pillow-handmade-whale

whale tooth fairy pillow tooth fairy pillow-whale unique-tooth-fairy-pillow

new jordan sig

how-to-engrave-wood-sign-diy

DIY Engraved Wood Signs [Tutorial]

I’m not usually big into art and signs with quotes and sayings…but I can appreciate a cute little saying every now and then.  I’m especially a sucker for beachy [I wish spell check would stop telling me "beachy" is not a word...it is in my vocabulary!] quotes & sayings.  I always have lots of scrap wood laying around that I like to find uses for, so the other day I decided to turn one of them into an engraved sign!  Of course I chose one of my favorite quotes to put on it…anyone who lives near the coast can relate this ;)
How to make an engraved wood sign [tutorial]

All you’ll need for this project is a piece of wood to engrave, two paint colors, and a printer!

Select a piece of wood to engrave and apply a base coat of paint to it.  I always have scrap wood laying around, my piece of wood actually came from an old table I took apart!  I chose to paint my sign in CeCe Caldwell’s Nantucket Spray to give it a beachy feel.

**For best results, I recommend using chalk paint because it will sand off and give the cleanest finish in the end.

Next, decide what your sign will say!  Again, I went with the beachy vibe, so mine said “Sandy toes, salty kisses”.  Print your message in whatever font you’d like your sign to be in.  Cut it out and arrange it on your sign.

Next, using a ball point pen (preferably one you wouldn’t mind ruining!), trace the text onto the wood.  Press hard as you go, the key here is for the pen to engrave into the wood!

After you’ve finished tracing the letters, your sign should look a little something like this!

Next, use your second paint color and a tiny paint brush to paint over the engraved text.  I chose CeCe Caldwell’s Cinco Bayou Moss, the gold was a great contrast on the pale Nantucket Spray

After you’ve painted on the text and it’s dried, take a super fine grit sand paper and rub lightly over the text.  You will see the paint on the outside of the letters sand off, while the engraved portion of the text remains!  You can touch up any areas that rubbed off too much, if you need to. This will also give your sign a nice, weathered effect!

Here’s how the finished product should look!

Now all I need is a sandy beach to dig my toes into…ah well, summer will be here soon enough!

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Cure for the Winter Blues! [before & after]

It’s cold, it’s wet, it’s icy and dark…it’s winter in New England! Now that the weather doesn’t exactly permit flea markets and yard sales, I’m digging into my reserve for new pieces furniture to revive! Luckily, I collected and saved up a bunch of pieces over the Summer to keep me busy over this long, cold Rhode Island winter =) One of the pieces I pulled out was this antique spool leg table I picked up at a local auction…I decided I wanted to give it a bright & cheery beach cottage look, the perfect cure for my winter blues!

Here’s how the piece looked before it’s revival:

It’s a great looking piece with lots of character, but it needed a new life…without question.

I started out by painting the entire table in Spring Hill Green, by CeCe Caldwell chalk + clay paint.  This would not be by final color, but I wanted a layered, distressed cottage look.

Next, I painted the table legs in CeCe Caldwell’s Alaskan Tundra Green.  I watered down the paint a bit to give it a bit less coverage, I wanted some of the Spring Hill Green to come through =)  Then finally, I chose to paint the table’s top and bottom shelf in Pittsburgh Gray.

The last step when using CeCe Caldwell’s chalk + clay paint is always to wax or satin finish your piece.  However, before waxing, I decided to use a fine grit sand paper to distress the table around the legs and edges.  Once I got the table where I wanted it, I gave it a good coat of wax!

Here’s how the finished spool leg table turned out!

 

There may not be a permanent cure for the winter blues, but this happy little table certainly brightened my day =)

Share your thoughts and rate this transformation below!

You can find this table available for purchase at Picklee on Spring!

white-cane-arm-chair

Coastal White Cane Chair Revival [before & after]

In the great big world of furniture, one thing you really don’t come across much anymore is caneCane furniture was really popular years ago, but it seems like it’s slowly becoming a lost art….likely due to the skill and amount of time it takes to weave a single piece of cane furniture.  This is why I get so excited when I come across a beautiful piece of cane furniture in pristine condition, I can only begin to imagine the amount of time and effort put into these pieces.

On a recent antique expedition, I came this fabulous solid cane arm chair.  I had an instant vision to brighten it up and bring it back to life.  Here’s how the chair looked when I found it (my apologies for the quality of this photo, it was taken in the shop right before I rushed home with the chair!)

When I got the chair home, the first thing I did was give a a nice coat of CeCe Caldwell’s Simply White paint chalk + clay paint.  This paint did a wonderful job adhering to the cane, which I was a bit worried about to start.  I ended up with two coats of paint on the chair, then I sealed it with a coat of spray lacquer.  I wanted the chair to have a solid, glossy finish.

Next, I decided the chair needed a cushion.  So I used a sheet of cushion foam and traced the shape of the seat, then cut it out.  To make the cushion, I traced the shape with fabric, then sewed it together similarly to how you would make a pillow (inside out, then attached piping to both sides). 

I love my cane chair’s new coastal cottage vibe, it will be loved for many, many more years now =)


Isn’t she a beauty?


I’m loving the gate patterned fabrics right now =)

You can find this chair available for sale at Picklee on Spring!

plywood-floor-tutorial

Farmhouse Wide Plank Floor Made from Plywood! [DIY]

As many of you know, it was just two short weeks ago that we opened the doors to the Picklee shop in Newport, RI! Getting the shop ready was a super exciting (and stressful!) process.  We were faced with a stinky, old, run down storefront that had been neglected for YEARS, but we had big plans to make the shop a beautiful place.  Sort of like reviving a stinky old chair…but on a much larger scale ;)

We fell in love with the space because it was in historic home built in the early 1700′s, so it was packed with original details and character…oh yea, and it was in the heart of the Newport waterfront shopping district =)

When it came time to renovate the shop, one of the first projects we took on was the floor.  The shop came with a Berber carpet that was probably three thousand years old…OK, maybe not that old-but it sure looked and smelt like it.  We knew we wanted to bring in beautiful & unique flooring that kept the shop true to it’s era, and save on costs at the same time.  We tossed around ideas for a while, and then eureka!  We decided we would create a wide plank, farmhouse style flooring using good ol’ fashion PLYWOOD!  Sounds a little crazy right? That’s what the guys at Home Depot thought too…just wait until I march back in and show them this!

plywood-floor-tutorial

I am absolutely thrilled with how beautiful the Picklee shop’s plywood floor turned out!  Its classic and true to the age of the space with it’s wide plank style, yet has a coastal farmhouse feel with it’s rustic look and white-washed finish.  I’ll to show you exactly how to get the look by making your very own wide plank plywood floor!

DIY Farmhouse Wide Plank Plywood Floor

First, I head over to my local Home Depot to scope out the different types of plywood.  I chose to use standard 1/2″ thick 4′ x 8′ sheets at a cost of just under $20 each!  I opted for these because they wern’t perfect.  They had knots, markings and lots of color variations…this was exactly the look I was going for!

With (lots of) help from the guys at HD, I loaded up my cart with the plywood sheets.  I needed 14 sheets since I would be covering an area of just under 450 square feet.  My original plan was to bring the sheets home and convince my lovely fiance to cut them into into planks for me, but then a miracle happened…the wonderful man at HD offered to cut them all for me!

In order to have zero waste, I chose to have the boards cut into 8 inch by 8 foot lengths, giving me six planks per sheet of plywood.  Thankfully I picked a slow time of day to go to HD because it took a little over an hour (and two trips to the shop and back) to cut all 14 sheets.  I am so grateful to the guys at Home Depot, even though they looked at me like I had 10 heads when I told them my plan for the planks ;)

Once the planks were cut, I brought them into the shop and laid them out.  First, I took out an electric sander and sanded all rough edges and splinters.  Next, I made up a mixture of 1/4 CeCe Caldwells Simply White Chalk Paint and 3/4 water.  You can alter this mixture depending on how “white” you want your flooring.  I used a roller attached to a broom handle to apply a coat of the white washed paint to all of the planks.

This next step is where my lovely fiance came in…some days I just don’t know what I would do without him =) First, Brett applied Bostik flooring adhesive to the backs of the plywood planks.  Next, he laid them into place then used a finish nailer to secure them to the floor.  We were lucky enough to have a strong wood sub-floor to shoot the finish nails into.  Brett used 1 1/2″ nails and shot them in on an angle.  We chose this method because we wanted the floor to have that rustic look.  The nails were spaced out about every 12″, placing two all along either side of each plank.


It’s important to have spaces in between the planks because wood will shift and expand over time.  We found that a metal straight edge gave the perfect distance between planks, so Brett used that as a spacing guide.


As Brett went on nailing down the boards, he used a table saw to cut some of them into different lengths so that we would give the boards a staggered look.  You can see some of the shorter lengths above…

See I helped a little here, passing him the pieces ;)

Once the entire floor was down, about 6 hours later…we applied three coats of Minwax Polyurethane (in satin) to give the floor a protective finish.  We waited 24 hours in between the first two coats, then only 2 hours between the second and third coat. Less than $300 and a day later, the floor was complete!  I couldn’t be more happy with the results =)

Sheer bliss….

**UPDATE!**

Here’s a photo of the floors inside the Picklee on Spring shop, 4 months after the install!  They are holding up wonderfully and we receive compliments daily!

I’ve had lots of questions about how to calculate square footage needed, here’s how…

Each sheet of plywood it 4′x 8′ (32 square feet). Simply divide the total sqaure footage of your space by 32 to figure out home many sheets you’ll need. Then just add an extra sheet or two for scraps!

Follow this link for more home improvement projects on Picklee!

Spruce up your home with these DIY Home Décor Projects too!

 

cow print foot stool

The Farmhouse Chic Cow Print Stool [before & after]

I’m usually pretty conservative about using crazy prints and fabrics on my furniture revivals.  Don’t get me wrong, I love a vibrant, poppy print, but I usually like to maintain a classic look with more subdued colors.  This is the reason I get super excited when I have a small scale piece to work with, like a little chair or a stool.  I’m always more daring when it comes to fun prints on smaller pieces.  I came across the perfect opportunity to do this when I picked up this great antique foot stool at an estate sale a few weeks back.  It was in rough shape, but I loved it’s classic look and intricate detail.  Here’s how the stool looked when I found it:

Not really much to look at, but check out the great detail on this little piece!  Quality, character & detail are the three main things I look for when I’m searching for pieces to revive and this definitely fit the bill.

I decided to give this dated antique stool a chic farmhouse twist, so I chose to upholster it in a super-plush cow print fabric!   After removing the old fabric, I painted the stool in CeCe Caldwell’s Vintage White, then added new foam to the seat and finally finished with my funky cow print fabric!  I love the way this cozy little stool turned out!

What do you think of this bold farmhouse stool? Is this plush cow print fabric is too much or just right?  Share your thoughts and rate below!

This stool is available for purchase at Picklee on Spring!

Queen Anne painted dresser blue-green

Queen Anne Keyhole Dresser {before & after}

I just finished up another great piece, I am so excited to share with you all!  I picked up this beautiful antique solid oak key hole dresser the other day.  It was one of those moments when I looked at it and instantly fell in love; I had an instant vision for its’ destiny!  Of course I used a blend of my favorite CeCe Caldwell chalk + clay paints to revive this piece.  Here’s the Queen Anne Dresser transformation from start to finish!

My first step in this transformation was to mix up the perfect color for this gorgeous piece.  I chose to use a mixture of CeCe Caldwell chalk + clay paint, I blended approx. 1/4 Destin Gulf Green, 1/4 Kentucky Mint, and 1/2 antique white until I reached this silky blue/green.  I used a heavy dry brush technique to achieve an aged-looking finish.  Dry brushing is simply applying a lighter, more whispy coat of paint (rather than using a heavy hand).

Once a got the dresser looking just how I wanted it. It was time to work on the hardware.  I knew I wanted to use the original hardware because it was so unique.  The brass pulls were so ornate and delicate, but they definintely needed some revival.  I used my Ruff n’ Buff in Gold Leaf to shine up the dull finish.  This stuff is so simple to use, and the transformation is amazing!

Here’s the difference between the old and new hardware after applying the Rub n’ Buff…

Wow.  I love that stuff!

After the hardware dried, I reattached it to the dresser.  I applied a good coat of CeCe Caldwell’s clear wax, then finished it off with buffing pad to give the piece a silky smooth finishing, here’s some close ups…

Look at those legs!!


Here’s a great detail shot of the dry brushed, vintage looking finish…

There’s that fabulous hardware again!

What do you think about the transformation?  Share your thoughts and rate below!

 

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The Vintage Fan Restoration [before & after]

Every so often, the stars align just right and I’m able to convince Brett to come along with me on a flea market trip.  Generally, he enjoys those types of things (not as much as me, but enough ;) ), he just gets too busy and forgets!  On a recent trip, we stumbled upon this awesome vintage Kenmore fan.  I think these things are great, I just won’t normally buy them because I’ve got pieces of furniture on my mind.  I was glad Brett tagged along because he convinced me to pick up this fan, and promised he’d take on the restoration, fine by me!

Brett did a fabulous job documenting his transformation.  He first shared it on his blog, DailyMilk, now we get to enjoy it!

We’ll start with the before and after of the fabulous vintage Kenmore fan transformation:

Pretty amazing transformation, huh? Brett did all of this using plenty of tools, a ton of patience, and good quality spray paint!

In order to properly restore the fan, Brett decided to completely disassemble the whole thing.  He wanted it perfectly restored and painted.  The first thing he did was remove the fan cover by taking out a screw on the back of the fan. The cover slid right off to reveal the motor and brackets holding it in. Before he got into cleaning the inside he figured it might be best to remove the fan cage too. He pried the cage off with a screwdriver, cleaned it, and set it aside. Brett thoroughly scrubbed and cleaned every part and every particle of dust with antibacterial cleaner.

Next, Brett removed the fan blade by squeezing an Allan wrench between the blades.

Brett then removed the entire motor. Mainly because he wanted to paint the fan shaft gold, the same color as the fan blade, without getting paint all over the black motor body. Also, since this fan was so old, it had all kinds of dust and grime stuck to the motor and vents, which you could also smell…this absolutely needed to be addressed!

When it came to cleaning the grungy brass “Kenmore” plaque Brett first assumed he’d have to go out and buy brass cleaner.  Then he figured there must be another solution on Google; sure enough, he found a fer great options. What he chose for an easy brass cleaner alternative was good ol’ worcestershire sauce!  He used an old toothbrush and scrubbed the brass with worcestershire until it was clean. It worked really well!

To prepare the fan for it’s paint job, Brett taped up the newly cleaned brass.  He first traced it with a pen to make sure it fully adhered to the brass, then trimmed it with a razor blade.

Now that all the parts were separated, Brett used gloss black spray paint on the fan body, and gold metallic on the blades.  Three coats of paint later, the fan had dried and it was time to put it back together!

What a wonderful transformation!  I’m so glad Brett took this on too, he’s already itching for another one…I can see why, the results are incredible!

This fan fit perfectly on my newly revived industrial modern desk too!

What do you think of Brett’s fan?  Share your thoughts and rate it below!