Thursday, August 1, 2013

Appreciating Unpainted Furniture

For whatever reason, the trend in barn sales and updated vintage home furnishing shops seems to be painted furniture. At the Sweet Clover barn sales, almost all the furniture is freshly painted with the exception of big farm tables and other pieces that have a natural, chippy painted patina already. 

It's not like I'm not one of those vendors who doesn't paint anything-- I actually paint almost everything I sell. That's partly because in order to get something at a good deal, the finish can sometimes be beyond repair or I just can't justify the time to refinish it. But it's also because the unpainted furniture sometimes sits for a while, while aqua end tables and dressers fly out of the place faster than we can make them.

I love a good piece of aqua furniture as much as the next person (heck, my room is painted in it). But part of me feels oh-so-guilty when I paint a gorgeous old dresser. And I wince when I see someone turn a piece of Hollywood Regency furniture with really cool wood grain into a solid color, shabby chic, paris flea market wannabe.

I get it, it can be kind of tough to see how a traditional wood piece can make your home look updated. So here are a few great examples of how you can use unpainted furniture in a space without looking dated. Notice how they aren't in spaces overflowing with wood surfaces, and a lot of them use varied textures and lighter colors to offset the heaviness of the wood. Many of them are in rooms with other painted furniture. The wood pieces serve as a gorgeous backdrop to pops of color sitting on top of them, and add the depth of finish gives subtle interest to the space. Hopefully these images will make you think twice before you immediately want to paint an old piece of furniture, and keep you on the lookout for gorgeous secondhand wood furniture!

Anna Spiro via Apartment Therapy
Chancellor Hotel via Toby Fairley
Via Lonny

Via Lonny
Jenny Komenda via Little Green Notebook
Via Jenny Komenda Interiors

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