How To: Dry Brushing Technique (and some major CUTENESS)

A couple weeks ago I showed you a French Provincial chest I just finished. That chest was actually a part of a full set I purchased. This past week I finished up the remaining pieces. After completing the chest, I was really digging my color choice and wasn't ready to put it to rest, so I ended up finishing the nightstands in the same color scheme. Here is a quick peak at how the nightstands turned out. 

Before:

After:

Ok, now that we're done oohing and ahhing, let's get this show on the road! 

By the time I finished these nightstands I was ready to go in a completely new direction. Good-bye gray and hello PINK! When I first saw this vanity I immediately envisioned it in a little girl's room. If you ask me, it's never too early to teach a girl how to apply lip gloss! 

Here is the Before picture. Right on par with all the other Before pictures from this set.

Although I wanted to make this vanity girly, I thought painting it ALL pink may be overkill. I decided my motto of "more is more" wasn't going to cut it here and I'd have to use some restraint. I mean, I'm envisioning a classy girl using this, after all!

I first stripped down the top, which I decided I was going to stain using Minwax Jacobean

The next step was deciding exactly how girly I was going to make this piece. In the end, I opted for Annie Sloan Old White for the base and Annie Sloan Scandinavian Pink for the drawers. However, once that step was done, the contrast seemed a bit too stark and I wasn't really feeling it. 

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It needed to be softened up to blend the colors a bit better. I decided to achieve this look by using two different methods - distressing and dry brushing.

Quick tip about distressing: I am often asked at what point do you distress a piece - before or after you wax it? Based on who you ask or what you read, I've seen both methods, and I actually do both ways. If you distress BEFORE you wax, you will sand off a lot more paint than if you distress AFTER you wax. So, I usually base it off how distressed I want the piece to look. Also, I always use 220 grit sandpaper for distressing. One caveat to this methodology is if I'm using both clear and dark wax, then I will always distress in between the clear and dark coats. For this piece, I wanted a highly distressed look, so I distressed BEFORE waxing.

Once the distressing was complete, I turned my attention to the drawers. They were just blah pink drawers staring me in the  face. In order to make the drawers feel more cohesive with the base, I decided to dry brush them. For this technique, you just barely dip your brush into a different color of paint than the original color, wipe off any excess, then use smooth, long strokes to brush the paint over the surface.

The Old White dry brushed on the drawers really helps to blend the two colors.

After that, I polished up the hardware (which I attached the CORRECT way this time). The final step was finding a girl cute enough to really show off this piece...which I think I achieved!

I mean, seriously...does it get any cuter than this?!

I know, I may be getting a little side tracked here...but can you blame me?!

I didn't think so!

If only every piece of furniture came with a girl this cute!

A special thanks to Carmela for being so much fun to work with. You are a natural and a diva in the making for sure! Also, a huge thanks to Carmela's mom who let me barge into their home for this photo shoot only two weeks after giving birth to their second child. I owe you big time!