7.5 Different kind of Artistry

July 26, 2010

A few weeks ago my dad dropped off a dresser from when I was a little kid.  Of course it had scribbles all over it and the wood was unfinished. 

I wanted to paint this dresser a dark, dark red – almost black – with just a hint of a fiery red color, and trim the dresser with ‘gold’ around the outside of each dresser front.  I was open to other hues of dark almost black as well, but red was my favorite idea.

Here are my initial paint chip samples from local big box hardware store:

None of these choices matched the vision in my head for this piece.

Apparently the two blacks on the right side, one of which is a green tinted black and the other which is a purple tinted black are the only really really dark colors of anything they have there premade.

So I went back to the big box store and told them this was my great compromise and idea.  Let’s put the red that I loved that was not too purple and the black and mix them together equally.


They said no.  They cannot do that. 


Now I am a quilter and I work with fixed colors of fabric and so I get when you have a blue piece of fabric and a red piece of fabric you cannot create a purple piece of fabric by sewing them together.  That’s because the colors are fixed into the fabric. 

But paint?  Paint can be mixed.  

Hues/tints/shades can be changed fairly easily.  It’s not like I was asking them to take a piece of red fabric and make it black, I was asking them to mix two colors of paint together!

So this one employee asks if I had looked at everything they already had available and takes me to a section of paint chips that has some dark red/purples, and then I say, not what I am looking for, can we just mix them?  And then she gets another opinion from another employee, and then asks a third employee. 

So suddenly this other lady is trying to convince me that when you mix more black with red, you get a red/purple. 

Okay, she was just trying to say that without a specific paint chip, she didn’t want to get the color wrong and get sued by me for giving me the wrong color, or that if the shade wasn’t right, then it would take too much paint to overcorrect it, or that her bosses had said previously that they don’t mix colors without a specific color sample (or at all – I don’t know?) to match it against.  (I am just speculating here)

She was saying that I wasn’t worth the time to get the shade correct, or that mixing paint was impossible, or treating me like I didn’t know that when you mix red and black you should get a red/black – dark red – not a dark red/purple.

Can you tell I wasn’t all that happy when I left? 

I was convinced by the employee that either the purple or the red I originally came in with would be a good match for what I wanted, and so took home  a color sample of each of these colors.  (picture here doesn’t turn out correct color shades, the top is more purple and lighter, but my camera didn’t show that very well here)

Then proceeded to paint parts of the dresser to see which I liked better..

Well the red was too red and the purple was … purple …

Not happy with this.

So I scrapped the original idea and decided to paint it black with gold and red trimming details.   Driving back to the big box hardware store and I didn’t get the same hassle because I didn’t ask them to mix anything but the paint samples provided.

I got the black done and then it rained as I was just finishing the first coat of paint, and I haven’t been back out for the 2nd coat yet on it.  Haven’t done the drawers yet.  Haven’t started back up on it yet. 

Decided to mow the lawn instead.  Then my mower quit halfway done.  I should try to mow again today now I am not as upset at my mower.

Maybe tomorrow when I get off work I will work more on the dresser?  Perhaps.  I will need to cut out painter’s tape in the shapes that I want. 

This may seem like a departure from the original idea, but the dresser will be dark, but I will still have some color in it.  Looking forward to seeing how it turns out or if I will finish it.

Do you want to see the knobs I purchased for the dresser?


I am considering transferring this design on my detail work on the dresser.  I also have some shiny gold tempra paint that could cover the handles, but if it get used a lot, perhaps that’s not a great idea.

And what do I ultimately want to use the dresser for?  Storing fabric!

Of course.

The other fabric storing device I worked on this past weekend:

This is 1 1/2 of those small wire  mesh shelves.  I took the top pieces from ones I bought at target, and middle sections of ones I bought a year ago at walmart, and two sets of racks (6 total to get good spacing).  

I’ve always liked my racks before, but too much space between them meant that fabric was piled too high and hard to reach the bottom.

It was cheaper to buy two sets of racks than to send away online for more bare shelves.  Each shelf by itself cost as much as a complete new rack.

I hit a snag in the project when I pulled off the tops of the target purchased poles and there was no threading.  And another snag when the threading stayed half on the wrong side of my original wire walmart racks and half on the right. 

Good ‘ol needle nose vice grips to the rescue and the ‘frankenstein wire rack’ is ALIVE  – and looking very well in my studio/office.


  1. I am in the process of catching up on pod casts listening from mid-June. I am in the process of listening to your broken dreams podcast. When you had referred to your house I immediately pictured a sewing cottage. On the materials that are in boxes in your home, would you be able to put them in a storage unit if they are something that you can’t part with yet but haven’t had a need for over the past several years?

    When you were imagined being outdoors with butterflies around, I was outside on my hammock watching two yellow butterflies at the time.

    Also, I like the music that you are mixing in with the podcast.

  2. […] was originally intending a dark dark red and ‘gold’ (see post here  and here for details), but made a […]

  3. Looks like a pretty big job, but turned out ok. Give art quilting a try!

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