Vintage Secretary Desk

By The Charmed Workshop, Owner in Appleton, WI.

Beauty is held in the imperfections that mark our uniqueness. With years of cracks, creases, and wrinkles, “Vivienne” is perfectly aged. This vintage secretary will no more be sitting in dust, her dark brown stained appearance making her drab and dreary. A multi-layered dry brushing in cream, buff, and ivory has highlighted the warmth of cocoa and wood undertones. The face of her desk now exudes detail with Iron Orchid Design moulds placed in the center and facing corners, interlinked with beading, as well as a piece to highlight the keyhole. The original key is still in safe keeping. Original mouldings crown the beveled mirror above the top shelf and are distressed to accentuate their curves. Three-tiered drawers provide plenty of storage with a pretty violet floral fabric lining their interiors. The new hardware is clear glass, shaped in flower petals, to never distract from the other shabby details. For a touch of whimsy, a violet vine stencil has been distressed to a faded innocence in the bottom right corner, trailing from the largest drawer onto the one above. The interior cubbies and shell have been wrapped in dramatic Nighttime Purple by Behr, which has also been used to complement the drawer sides. The desk surface has been left authentic, refinished in Espresso stain. She can no longer be ignored, and her new beauty will stand the test of time with her aged perfection. Visitors to your home will not miss “Vivienne” and she’s anxious for some long overdue appreciation.

Project Category

Upcycling Merit CategoriesMoldings & Appliques

Color Recipe

  • 4 different "oops" paints by Behr from Home Depot were used in a layered, dry brushing technique. Last layer was Sail Cloth by Behr, but then sanded back to reveal the multi-colors beneath.

Products Used

  • Behr "oops" paints (4)
  • Behr Sail Cloth
  • Behr Nighttime Purple
  • Miniwax Espresso stain

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