French-Style Antiqued Architectural Cornice

A few weeks ago I happened on a couple of pieces in my neighborhood that nearly had me getting tickets for making illegal U-turns all over the place.  This piece - along with the two free columns a high school drama department had thrown out - was one of them.

This piece is almost as long as I am tall!
(5', 6 1/2" - I shrunk a inch over the years :P)

So not to make this post so darn wordy - which I am very good at doing at times - here is the list of supplies I used after staring at it for over a week trying to figure how I wanted it to look:

  • Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Old White and Paris Grey
  • Annie Sloan Clear and Dark Wax
  • RotoZip - for removing old silicone sealant from the edges without putting myself into a coma from the chemicals that were suggested for removing the stuff!
  • Exacto knife for further removal of silicone sealant
  • Fine Sanding Block - LOVE these!
  • Fine Steel Wool Pad
  • Large to small stenciling style brushes for dark stain work - because this sucker has hidden corners all over the place.

The cornice got 2 coats of Old White and then some of the trim in Paris Grey.  I used some of the "bad" parts to my advantage as I just love imperfections in a piece.  Instead of sanding them away, or covering them up, I emphasized them.

After a coat of clear wax, the sanding and distressing began.  Since a lot of the grey was going to be distressed anyway, I wasn't too concerned about painting the trim perfect.  I just wanted to make sure the color was there.  So "staying within the lines" wasn't too big of an issue.  Think of it as the kindergartener coming out to play that day!

Putting the dark wax on became a little more detailed as I wanted the piece to look like it was just dragged from an old French barn in the countryside.  When my oldest daughter said it looked "too dirty", I knew I was on the right road.  So the antiquing process became a back and forth between applying dark wax, then sanding out certain areas to create both the light and dark contrast.

I finally broke down and had a glass of Pinot Noir halfway through the process.  I was up late last night finishing the distressing, but not after dragging each member of my family down to the work shed for opinions and/or approvals.  I drive them crazy in this department!  The hubs is SO patient, LOL!

So this is what I came up with:

The "urn" at the top was one of my fav features of the piece.

Notice the "bad" areas and old dusty looking corners - I love them!

Can't wait to get this into my booth today!

Passez une excellente journée!

Vintage Resurrections


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