Back to school

Every so often a piece of work comes my way that really makes me smile.  It might be an unusual piece, an item with a long and intriguing history, some varied paint techniques or bright and cheery colours.

And then sometimes a piece of work turns up at The Painted Shack doors which makes me smile for ALL these reasons!

That was what happened recently; an aged, unusual and intriguing item, which could definitely tell a tale or two, requiring several varieties of paints and some seriously fun colours.


An old school desk and chair set, the kind many of us sat at while we were at school, the perfect item of furniture to bring memories of childhoods flooding back.

My lady client had found the perfect little set for her children.  The items were obviously and understandably a little used, but oh so very cute.  (And if ever I wished a piece of furniture could talk to tell its tale, this was it!)

The desk showed all the history of so many little people enjoying their time at school…the etchings, scribbles, doodles and ink stains documenting their story indelibly into the wood.

I began sanding the desk, but those carved and inked markings were there for good – and so they should be, they were now part of the charm and character of the desk.  So, I sealed the story with several coats of new varnish and a nice shiny coat of metal paint on the legs.

The desk lids were painted using chalkboard paint, giving a new beautiful and fun edge to this old relic.  What a wonderful and perfect idea!  (It was my client’s, not mine!)


And then there were the chairs.  Dinky and cute.  My client chose two beautiful colours for these – Calypso Coral, a vivid pink with just a slight hint of orange tinge, and Tendershoots, a bright lime shade of green with a very interesting yellow tinge, which really made me think of lemons and limes the entire time I was painting with it.  In fact I smiled and thought of tropical fruit salads while I painted both chairs, which were then sealed and protected with a coat of clear varnish.


This old school desk set was given a modern and charming new look, whilst retaining its old history character and charm.  We all love to be taken back to our childhoods at times and this certainly did just that.

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