Thursday, 13 March 2014

Painting Antiques - Savvy or "Stupid"?

I recently got a really lovely (sarcasm) comment from a lady on a Facebook group when I expressed interest in a 1960's wood hutch -

"You would be stupid to paint an antique"

Well, I had two issues with that - 1) the hutch was no where near an actual valuable "antique" and
2) even if it was, is painting an antique "stupid"?

I have a few thoughts on this, because with this huge boom in painted furniture it seems like there are a lot of painted antiques popping up on the market - some good, and some not-so-good!

Please note that all of this is my own PERSONAL opinion based on my own style - there is not really a "right" or "wrong" when it comes to painting, so take this with a grain of salt :)

I often view myself as a bit of a "make up artist" for furniture. Painting vintage furniture, to me, is a lot like applying the right kind of make-up. You are trying to HIGHLIGHT natural beauty, not cover it up! Sometimes less is more, and a heavy hand is not always a good thing. Antiques are most often beautiful because of their unique detailing and eye-catching design, and this is what should be treasured and preserved. In my opinion, the actual finish on the outside is so much less important than the overall quality of original design and craftsmanship.

People generally like antiques because they are timeless - if taken care of correctly they never seem to go out of style. Now, with the wave of painted furniture, these timeless antiques are seeing some interesting makeovers. Really bright colours seems to be an interesting trend...

And hey, don't get me wrong, I think each of these is well-done and cool in their own right, however, I think perhaps this is where the lovely Facebook commenter mentioned above got her impression that painting an antique is "stupid". While I would definitely not use those words to describe the artists that did these pieces, because I am sure they are amazing people, at the same time I do not share the love of the "shock value" when it comes to a vintage or antique piece of furniture.

Neon green is not timeless, no matter which way you slice it! 

I absolutely love historical colours and especially love to create something that has the same feel of vintage even though the finish is not original. By adding some carefully selected "make-up" I think that you are taking an already gorgeous piece of furniture and making it something that a new generation can love for a long, long time. 

Thanks for reading, 


No comments:

Post a Comment