Painted furniture?
toomuchbeige
July 22, 2012 in Design Dilemma
I've decided to use a professional decorator in the move to a smaller home. one of the things she is recommending is painting our large (70") oak hutch. Since the hutch is a treasured piece and in beautiful shape (stained and newly made in 2003) my husband is reluctant. It will cost $400 dollars to have it professionally painted the recommended Dover White and then be used to display colorful pieces in the upper glassed in shelved and lit area and dishes etc below. We are not sure we want to take this step with this piece but do admit we really like everything else she has suggested. We're concerned painting it would be a temporary look and the hutch has no "need" to be painted and it would simply be a decorative move. The house is too small to move it to a traditional total dining area where we had had it in our former house. We now have white woodwork and I don't doubt it would look great but are there any other options to make this hutch work? Thanks for your tips! Donna Please note other items in picture are temporary as this was taken when moving things in.
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
Your designer has done a good job for you. Trust your designer! But if it makes you feel better, this designer agrees that it would look better painted white.
Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
3 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 2:03PM
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toomuchbeige
Thanks for your quick response!
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 2:08PM
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houzredo
I think it would look great painted, not a big fan of the honey colored oak, but understand not wanting to paint a faily new piece of furniture.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 2:14PM
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Debbie
I, too would love to see it painted. Oak is...just...not...eye-appealing anymore...It's a great base...and on a side note--not everything has to be matchy-matchy....maybe convert it to another use? Take out the 2 center doors, and use it for a TV, the shelf under that for the cable box...the side doors for dvd's...maybe paint a piece of luan instead of the glass, or replace the glass w/some of that awesome "bubbled" glass,(found in almost any (even small towns) glass repair shop. Board games in lower shelves behind doors...cards, etc in drawers. *and change the drawer pulls.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 2:18PM
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lewie
Have you heard of chalk paint.? Anne Sloan makes the paint. It's easy to do,,your piece will be beautiful and you will get many ohs and ahas.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 2:31PM
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Barnhart Gallery
Agree to paint -- white/black/an accent color... Your displayed items will shine rather than be lost in the grain.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 2:37PM
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toomuchbeige
Drawer pull suggestions?
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 3:12PM
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mjmil
I agree painting this piece is the way to go. I think once it is done it will look lovely. The oak is outdated.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 4:15PM
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mjmil
By the way who are you getting to paint this piece? Just wondering who could do this type of job, as I have a piece I want to get painted.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 4:17PM
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Debbie
@toomuch....drawer pulls will depend on the choice of color...the color of ceiling fan...the use of the piece of furniture...ie; Asian inspired: Chinese characters would look awesome...silver bladed ceiling fan...something unusual in brushed silver...any other colors of metals in room...etc. There are some awesome ones on-line!
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 5:16PM
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lewie
Mjml you can do this type of job. Chalk paint requires no prep. Look up chalk painting on Internet . It tells how to do it and even how to make your own chalk paint. Not chalkboard paint. Just jump in start with a small piece and work your way up.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 5:25PM
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Debbie
@mjmil...there's a very talented young woman: Anne Price in Gresham OR...Anne's Shabby Shoppe. (Check her out on facebook)
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 5:30PM
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Cozy Casita
I respectfully disagree with those who are recommending the client should go against her gut feeling, particularly when it involves a "treasured" piece of furniture. The main point here is (or should be) that the homeowner is reluctant to make the change and that her husband, who created the piece, is also against it. @toomuch, I'm sure your interior designer is well able to come up with a design you'll love, using the oak you also love ! You haven't mentioned what style your home/room is, or what style you'd like it to be but I, for one, don't see this piece as having to 'date' a room at all. If anything, I'd say that painting it white is more likely to tie you to a particular look and, whilst you may be fine with it for a while, the moment you tire of it, you're going to be kicking yourselves for not having stood your ground. For a less permanent change, I'd suggest lining the interior backboard to show of your ornaments. Rather than stick anything to the piece itself, I'd ask hubby to cut some ply to fit, cover it with a pale, solid fabric (very simple to staple on) and slot it back into the cupboards. Changing the hardware is another, non-permanent, option for tying the piece in with your other furnishings ... white ceramic knobs, for example, would fit with a country theme and tie in with your white woodwork (I'm guessing here, since I note the rocker and the sampler on the floor there!) My best advice ? ... Don't sacrifice a meaningful piece forever, simply to satisfy (someone else's) decorating taste !
3 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 6:20PM
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lewie
Thank you everyone who has responded to my request for help. Thank you Houzz for your app,I have really enjoyed looking,and looking and looking.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 6:21PM
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toomuchbeige
Thank you Cozy for that other point of view.....the house is very"coastal" feeling and cottage y in the decor...Colors are gray blue and gray green throughout. i know what is being said about it being "dated" but I do wonder how we will feel if 5 years from now we'll wonder why we ever did that. I had thought of the back drop idea before but my decorator vetoed that insisting on painting....As I said, she's really good but surely there is a way to use this without painting.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 6:37PM
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Susan Mills Design
Your concern is that you feel painting it is a temporary look. You have moved and no longer have a traditional dining room. How long do you anticipate being in this coastal cottagey home? I have done makeovers for clients and had pieces like this painted and they LOVED the way it updated and gave it new life. I think if your decor has changed to suit your new home and the designer recommended this be painted and you are planning on being here for some time, go ahead and trust the overall vision of the designer you hired.

I would love to see the finished look in place in your home and how you style it.

Susan Mills
1 Like   July 22, 2012 at 6:59PM
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johnsonlk
I agree, paint it. Years from now if you want the natural wood just strip the paint off, the wood will still be there and the varnish will protect it. Why do you have to hire the painting done? Can't you sand and spray the paint on yourself for a lot less? I also think the idea of taking the doors off and using it as an entertainment center is a good idea with TV in center and books on sides.
0 Likes   July 22, 2012 at 7:19PM
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Cozy Casita
You're welcome, toomuch ! Yes, of course there's a way of using the piece without painting it. Your decorator knows so (I would imagine) but appears not to be taking your concerns .. or your love for a piece of furniture, handcrafted by your husband .. at all seriously. As the client, you should be the one "insisting", when it comes to something as important as this item appears to be to you. Unless you're blocking her from getting your 'beach-cottage' look in a whole host of other ways, your designer shouldn't be incapable of including what is an easily accessorized, classic (as opposed to 'dated') hutch, into her design. I certainly don't see this as a piece that can only live in a 'formal' dining room and, with a little tweaking, as previously suggested, and the addition of some 'beachy' (go with mostly white here, perhaps) ornaments and accent pieces, the hutch should be just as happy, living in the family room at the beach, as it was back in the formal dining room at the old house !
1 Like   July 22, 2012 at 11:41PM
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lindsayo
I'm not aesigner, just another homeowner seeking help. I love your hutch. I love both stained wood like this and painted furniture, so think either would look good. My only suggestion is to talk to the painters and ask how much it would cost to get the painting undone (stripped, restained, revarnished) and if they are confident they could get it back to looking this good. Then you would know the cost of you mistake if painting it turned out to be a mistake
2 Likes   July 23, 2012 at 1:23AM
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Michelle Mink
When in doubt, wait.

I agree with your designer that painting it would improve the piece, however, clients are rarely happy when they just can't "see" it the way the designer does and feel they've been pressured into something. You might always doubt your decision.

You can always put the piece in your new home and if, after awhile, it just doesn't 'feel' right, you can have it painted then. If you come to the conclusion that it really DOESN'T match, but you would still like to see the grain of the wood, consider having it refinished with a 'pickling' stain in white or light gray. This will allow the graining to show through but will take the piece more in the direction that your designer is taking you - and maybe your husband would like it more, too. Kind of a compromise.

Designers will always try to help their clients' homes look the best, but ultimately you will have to live there. Do what makes you happy.
4 Likes   July 23, 2012 at 4:15AM
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Cozy Casita
Best advice yet (in my opinion) Michelle. The question isn't whether or not we think the hutch would look better painted but, "are there any other options to make this hutch work ?" Putting the idea of painting on 'hold' .. and actually providing options .. is definitely the right approach.

We haven't actually heard why the designer is "insisting" the piece be painted. I can only imagine it's because she's interpreting the beach-cottage look as being restricted to 'bleached-out' or white painted furniture which, again, it's only my opinion, can look a little 'kitschy' and 'vacation-time only' (!) to those who like the solid and dependable look of natural wood.
0 Likes   July 23, 2012 at 9:54AM
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Cozy Casita
Talking of 'Kitsch', here are a couple of links to 'beachy' drawer pulls ! There are tons out there if you do a simple online search for 'beach decor'. Personally, I think I'd go for plain white porcelain and do the 'seaside' thing with larger accessories and furnishing fabrics, if that's the way you'd like to go.
http://www.coastaldecorshop.com/coastal-drawer-pulls.html
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Real-Sea-Shell-Drawer-Pulls-Knobs-Snipe-Bill-Beach-Decor-/160711139752?_trksid=p4340.m263&_trkparms=algo%3DSIC%26its%3DI%252BC%26itu%3DUCI%252BIA%252BUA%252BFICS%252BUFI%26otn%3D15%26pmod%3D160636667180%26ps%3D63%26clkid%3D814252512925038136&_qi=RTM1062687#ht_714wt_936
0 Likes   July 23, 2012 at 10:14AM
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Cozy Casita
Here's your hutch ... unpainted natural oak ... all dressed up and ready for beachside service ! (Just as I imagined it, with mostly white accessories.) I think it looks splendid !
http://blog.cottageandbungalow.com/featured/julys-coastal-home-of-the-month/
2 Likes   July 23, 2012 at 10:53AM
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karen paul interiors
I suspect your designer is attempting to update the look of your hutch. The Queen Anne styling (door inserts and gingerbread rail), and in oak pretty much puts your hutch in the casual traditional camp. The glass shelves and interior lights pretty much places it in the camp of the casual traditional interpretation from the 70's and 80's. So my guess is she is attempting to put white on it, will change out the hardware, perhaps add a glass shelf which seems to be missing, and turn it into a piece with relevant accessories for your new home, drawing attention away from it's original intent. As I said, however, I'm only guessing.
1 Like   July 23, 2012 at 11:27AM
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toomuchbeige
OK! That picture of the hutch gave me a good thing to compare it to. I did consider just what they did with filling it with white items.....I have to admit I'm leaning toward taking the daring route of painting it.....
0 Likes   July 23, 2012 at 12:14PM
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Debbie
@toomuchbeige--it's taking that first leap! Yay 4 U! After much ado and prompting [by me], my Mom f-i-n-a-l-l-y decided a white ceiling was old and dated and how wonderful a room could look w/ceiling painted the same color as walls, really was beautiful-and new/different!
0 Likes   July 23, 2012 at 2:35PM
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Picked & Painted
The hutch is gorgeous but the wood does look dated. White is the new honey wood : )
I repainted an old china cabinet and distressed it.
0 Likes   August 22, 2012 at 8:06PM
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Picked & Painted
The hutch is gorgeous but the wood does look dated. White is the new honey wood : )
I repainted an old china cabinet and distressed it.
1 Like   August 22, 2012 at 8:07PM
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karen paul interiors
What a fabulous difference between before and after. Love the back in blue and the white accessories. You must be very pleased with the results. Hooray! :)
2 Likes   August 22, 2012 at 8:11PM
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Picked & Painted
Thank you Karen. My client loved it!
0 Likes   August 22, 2012 at 8:22PM
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mnmach
If you decide to paint it, I would go with a gray blue inside the hutch and white accessories, but if you decide to leave it natural you might consider adding mirrors to the back of the top half of the hutch and change the pulls. Let us know what you decide to do!
0 Likes   August 22, 2012 at 8:43PM
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karen paul interiors
I believe she was transitioning to a coastal theme? You should show us some more of what you have done. This was not an easy job, I know. :)
0 Likes   August 22, 2012 at 9:05PM
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maryloudesjardins
There are some great ideas from everyone. Looking at your picture of the hutch it does look aged. But... I feel that the blue painted wall causes this effect. The wall could be painted white instead of the hutch. Perhaps just on the one wall. Your hutch then pops and it no longer looks yellow. Add all the other suggestions. - new pulls, displayed objects. Cozy Cassita's picture link is great.
0 Likes   August 22, 2012 at 10:02PM
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toomuchbeige
I thought you might like to see the hutch painted. I have two swivel chairs ordered that will flank the hutch. The glass knobs are pale green and we love it painted!
2 Likes   September 13, 2012 at 1:53PM
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
It's beautiful and I'm so glad that you're happy with it painted!
0 Likes   September 13, 2012 at 2:15PM
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toomuchbeige
Oh I see what you mean...I'm getting yellow, aqua, and cherry pink solid-ish plates to replace those and add more color. But I the top has 3 the middle has 4 and the bottom has 2. Should I put 4 on the top so as not to have them cut off? and the ceiling has a large display ledge up there which is why the top of the hutch is done to keep the eye travelling up to the ledge where there is a trunk with antique quilts cascading out and some other things......
1 Like   September 13, 2012 at 3:15PM
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Candice Stroope
The white looks fabulous. Did you go with the Dover White and was it professionally painted? I have a similar dilemma with a 3-piece oak entertainment unit and can't decide whether to paint it or sell it. Great job!
0 Likes   September 13, 2012 at 3:54PM
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cprmt
@toomuchbeige: Wow!! I love the result. I started reading the thread from the beginning, not knowing how it was going to end. What a pleasant surprise! I will admit I was firmly in the 'paint it' camp; however I completely understood the sentimentality, doubt and fear of regret lol! You've inspired me.

I have a piece that I picked up 10 years ago at an antique store. I believe it's solid walnut, and I simply cannot get rid of it even though it doesn't fit or go with anything I own. It reminds me of a hutch my grandmother had in her very dated kitchen my whole life.

My hutch is now in my livingroom, serving as candle and knick-knack storage, and I've been thinking about painting it for several years. But I am fully aware of the 'gasp, you can't paint wood!' crowd, and I can appreciate their argument.

Yes, it may be an antique, but it doesn't mean much to me because it's an antique. It's meaning comes from the resemblance to my grandmother's hutch. It's similar in shape and wood tone.

What I realized is this: if it stays the colour it is, it has to go. If I paint it, then I may have an interesting piece, and it will still remind me of my grandmother. Just in shape only!

Thank you for being brave! Christa
0 Likes   September 13, 2012 at 5:16PM
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naomifrash
Wow. I don't have to say go with painting it, cos you did, and it looks fab! Thanks for posting the after pic too.
0 Likes   September 13, 2012 at 9:09PM
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Susan Mills Design
Looks so fresh and pretty! Good job!
0 Likes   September 13, 2012 at 10:06PM
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Susan Trejo
Amazing what white paint does to a hutch! Looks gorgeous!
0 Likes   September 13, 2012 at 11:07PM
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toomuchbeige
We chose to have the hutch professionally painted by the makers of the hutch. They did a beautiful job. We realized it was nice as the oak finish and served us well for a number of years in that finish. If we had left it that finish we probably would have chosen to store the piece as it just didn't go in the new house. For us it was a good move to paint it and be able to incorporate it and enjoy it.
1 Like   September 14, 2012 at 3:19AM
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Debbie
Great decision! Looks beautiful!
0 Likes   September 14, 2012 at 8:03AM
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bamamom
WOW!!! I had mixed feeling while reading the thread too. I was thinking go with your gut and keep it for the sentimental value, then saw the picture that Cozy posted of the oak hutch and though "yep, it can be used". THEN, when I read you had taken the plunge I thought "oh no!" But, after seeing it, WOW!!!! Turned out beautifully. PLEASE post a picture of the hutch with your new chairs and china in place. Enjoy your new home for many years to come!
3 Likes   September 14, 2012 at 8:31AM
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