When we bought our house, we were moving from the cutest, and most beloved, tudor cottage. And we didn’t have furniture to fill our big ol’ colonial.

Our old house

There were a few pieces left in this house– a large, 60’s Frenchie dining table, 10 chairs, and the matching china hutch. Our realtor kicked in $300 for the transfer of these items, as not to leave us languishing with empty rooms, for years.

Former owner’s dining table and chairs

I thought they’d be temporary pieces until flusher times. But, I gave each piece, simple makeovers that had me rethinking. They are Widdicomb made and much higher quality than anything I’d be able to buy from a catalog. And I started to fall in love with French pieces mixed in with other traditional elements, such as Chinoiserie.

First “meal” at our table, during the home inspection

I painted the dining table legs with black chalk paint. Chalk paint allows minimal prep and leaves a velvety finish, once sealed with natural, finishing wax. I used Rub n’ Buff on the feet in antique gold. Just enough of a modern kick to work with my style.

The chairs were upholstered in a bold red and gold stripe. I painted it with charcoal, chalk paint, using a similar technique as used in this Apartment Therapy article. The main difference is I was dealing with very bold, fabric colors. I did 6-8 coats on the upholstery and then used finishing wax to seal. The addition of the finishing wax gives the fabric a soft, almost vintage leather look and feel.

It’s been a year. They’ve held up to daily use by tots and spills wipe off easily. I’d call this DIY a win.

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