Restoration Hardware Inspired Art Deco Desk [before & after]

art deco desk restoration hardware style

It’s been a bit since I’ve shared one of my own before & after furniture transformations…ironically, I seems that I’ve been working on nothing but furniture lately, I’ve just been so busy with it that I haven’t found the time to share with you all!  I’m breaking the steak today with an awesome mid century, art deco desk that I revived using a mixture of CeCe Caldwell’s Vermont Slate, Antique White, and gold metallic.  I formulated this mixture with inspirations from Restoration Hardware on my mind. 

The beautiful curves and mid-century design of this desk were absolutely ideal for the industrial modern transformation I had in mind.  Here’s a before photo: (you’ll have to forgive me here, I recently lost a camera full of images so this isn’t the actual before, but it’s very close look-a-like!)…


After a coat of CeCe Caldwell (my favorite all natural chalk + clay paint!) in Vermont slate and a wash of Antique White & Gold, here’s how my Restoration Hardware inspired mid-century desk turned out:


My first step in the revival  process was to remove the hardware and give the desk a thorough cleaning.  I wans’t going to use the original hardware, but after giving it a good cleaning, I loved the gold patina that came through.

Next, I gave the desk a good solid coat of Vermont Slate chalk + clay paint. 

After that dried, I mixed up a wash of Antique White, water, and just a bit of gold metallic.  I lightly covered the entire piece in the wash.  Last, I used a damp rag to ever-so-slightly distress the desk.  This is just one of the beautiful things about chalk + clay paint, you can distress with simply water (rather than tirelessly scratching away with sand paper).  Once I got the desk where I wanted it, I gave it a good coat of CeCe Caldwell’s clear wax to finish it off.

This now industrial modern desk turned out exactely how I’d wanted, I couldn’t be more pleased with it!  Check out the great industrial desk chair and revived vintage fan too (look for their before & after’s, coming soon!)

Stay tuned! This desk and many more fabulous pieces will available to purchase soon!


6 responses to “Restoration Hardware Inspired Art Deco Desk [before & after]

  1. What a gorgeous redo! I love working on furniture but it’s hard to find time – it’s so time consuming and I have so little patience – hah!

  2. What do you do with your “projects” when you are done?
    Where do you get most of your projects/furniture at?
    btw love getting your blog it is so inspiring and creative.

    1. Thanks Lori, that’s a great question! Brings me to some very exciting news, which I will be announcing on Picklee soon! Many of my revivals will be available for purchase at the new Picklee shop (opening soon in Newport, RI and online as well). Stay tuned for more information in the next couple of weeks!

  3. I love this piece. It looks like denim to me. I have my grandmother’s round dining table that sat about 10 ppl. I really would like to make something new with it. Do you have any suggestions.

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