Friday, June 14, 2013

Instant Vintage Look

I love Industrial Chic design, perhaps because I live in a 19th century house filled with vintage beauties.
But sometimes, we need an extra vintage touch and all the objects around us are contemporary. Here's how you can turn a plain wood box into a mystery secret treasure box:

The box you start with can be made from any kind of wood, I used cheap balsa boxes from the craft store.
One thing though - the wood has to be raw (not finished with lacquer)

You also need some acrylic colors, but if you don't have acrylic colors, you can use watercolor or gouache, tempera, whatever, but in the end you'll have to varnish it with a matte lacquer. Good acrylic colors are permanent and they don't smudge in contact with moisture while the other types do.

So, let's get started:
1. first, mix black and brown acrylic colors in a jar. Set aside a little part of the mixture into the lid of the jar or  somewhere. Add water to the jar so that it becomes liquid and semi transparent.

 2. Paint the box, no rules, just paint it inside and out. Any brush will do. Don't worry if the color seems too dark, it will lighten up when dry, and plus, we're going to  partially sand it.

3. Let the box dry, then sand it all over, insisting on the edges.

4. Make a stencil of your choice out of a plastic or cardboard sheet. I've cut some random letters and numbers. It has to be quite rigid not to wrinkle when you brush on top of it, yet thin enough to cut it easily and to be able to work with the brush on it. Mine looks like that, dirty with black and white, as I already used it a couple of times before.

5. Moist the brush into the concentrated color left in the lid of the jar and then dry it a bit, we need an intense yet pretty dry color.
Hold the stencil in place with one hand and brush it with the paintbrush, lightly in the middle, more in the corners to be sure the corners will be visible, as they define the shape.


Ta-da, that's all!