…q&a’s

Hi Folks! Here’s our weekly Q&A. Some of you that may be new to Blue Egg Brown Nest may want to look at my YouTube Tutorials or past posts from more detailed information. There’s a ton of content on here if I do say so myself!

How did your husband open the trunk? My grandfather’s old WW2 trunk is in my basement, my dad tried to open it with the key and the key broke off in it.

I must say, this is the second trunk that I’ve purchased that was locked without a key. They must have made them super dooper back then because getting into one is not easy. Here’s what DH says he did to open, “I used a flat head screw driver and a pry bar to bend the inner lip of the lock just enough to get a screw driver inside and rotate it around the circle to get it open”. Good luck! Tell me if you find any treasure :)

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When painting and using the wax, do I have to buy all the different Annie Sloan brushes? Or are there some less expensive ones I can use? Also, with the wax, I know in your tutorials you say to use the different brushes for the different color waxes, do I have to do that? Just trying to save myself some money.

I totally understand. If you plan on doing alot of painting, invest in at least one good ASCP oval brush – a large one. This will cut down on paint lines & make the surface areas go quickly. You can get away with a small, cheap brush for detailed work (make sure bristles do not fall out!), and a rag for the waxing processes. You will need separate rags for clear and one for dark. Do not mix these.

Also, the counter top of the hutch that I am going to keep natural looking…does Annie Sloan make a stain? Or can I use the dark wax without a paint? Is that something I can apply straight to wood?

She does not make a stain that I know of. But, if you are after a stain simply go to your hardware store and buy a few of the tiny cans, experiment with the color on the back of your hutch. Then you want to use a clean, small rag and move with the grain of the wood all the way through. Go lightly and if you need to do a second coat you can. The dark wax is not meant as a stain so I would not use it as such. It is used for your detail work to make the piece looked aged.

I know that you said you use uship to ship your pieces, but do you get a quote before you sell a piece; or, do you wait until after you sell a piece to get a quote so that you know where it is being shipped. For example, if you posted something on ebay, you need to put a shipping cost, so do you get a quote for shipping before you post?

So, this is what I do about shipping items posted on Etsy or the like. I write that the client has to “convo” me for shipping. This is a must. Do not let them buy & pay before you figure out shipping because if you can’t find a low enough shipping price they may not be able to afford it and may change their minds and you have to do a refund. It’s a real pain. If you use USHIP, then you post the item for shipping and wait for bids. Then as I received bids I would tell clients what I was getting. I set it all up and if we found an agreeable price & date to ship then they would pay for the piece & shipping via me. It’s rather complicated.

I am not sure how much distressing I want on my chairs, can repaint over them once I have applied the wax?

Yes!

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A few months ago I painted my kitchen table AS Ochre & put several coats of wax to waterproof but recently I spread out a newspaper on it to do a messy flower arrangement & the ink got on the table & would not wipe off. I had to use Barkeepers Friend & wet paper towel to scrub it off. Why did this happen & what can I do to make sure I don’t get stains like this again?

Uggg. Was your piece completely dry & wax dry? That seems strange to me as I’ve never had that happen on any of my painted surfaces. Newsprint does bleed in general, but I would think you would be able to wipe off.

I am starting the process of painting my kitchen cabinets with Old White, and I have read in a few places that I could use the Annie Sloan Lacquer instead of the clear wax. What is your opinion on that?

I’ve never used the lacquer! Anyone have experience? I need to get on that, I guess. Didn’t know she had one. eek!

I just wanted to ask you where it is that you find all your pieces from? I find that it is really hard to find the right piece for the right price.

Everywhere! Start with your friends/family/community and then move onto Craigslist, yard sales, estate sales, Goodwill, the side of the road, etc!

I noticed you did not tape off the glass on the china hutch.  Will the paint easily come off without doing that?  I spend lots of extra time taping off mirrors etc…….am I wasting my time?

I never tape unless it’s to tape of a leather inlay or the like. Otherwise, I never tape glass or mirror. I scrape the paint off afterwards with a blade. You will save yourself alot of heartache.

I was wondering about how much paint and wax do you use when you do a large dresser or buffet?

Large? I’d say about a half a can of paint and half a can of clear wax.

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Have you ever or heard of anyone trying waxing on a previously painted item not done in chalk paint? I like the color of my desk but doing a dark wax would make it look incredible.

Totally! Go for it and play. There are no rules in painting.

How would a waxed dining table hold up with washing it clean several times a day from meals and projects? Does it need to be continually re-waxed?

It will wear and tear like any used surface, but you will be surprised how well it holds up. I’d say I’ll refresh my nightstands maybe in 6 years or so if I’m not happy how it’s wearing. But, it’s the shabby look so a bit of wear will look well.

What color is the hutch and vanity? And is Graphite a chalk paint from Annie Sloan?

The vanity & hutch that I’m working on are in French Linen. Yes, ASCP makes Graphite.

Will you please let us know how the waxing goes with Graphite? I’ve done many pieces- and, though I love the color- the wax seems to enhance any strokes/imperfections-and even with AnnieSloan cheesecloth-I see white residue. 

Yes, waxing a Graphite piece is a bit tedious. Make sure you use a rag that does not shed or is not cotton. You will see white flecks. You may want to use a wax brush when using Graphite. I also end up doing lots of touch ups.

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…building a business: hiring

There comes a point in a small business where you have to choose how big you want to grow and how hard you want to work. It’s really not as easy as it sounds especially if you are in the same boat as I am and are a mom first.

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If your business is really blowing up and you find yourself working every minute of every day then it’s probably time to hire someone.

Hopefully, if you are working this hard you are also making money at what you are doing. (If not, it’s time to slow down a bit and be patient until you do some selling. Just trying to be honest.) You then have the funds to allocate to some help.

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Maybe this means hiring a babysitter a few days a week to watch the kids so you can work. Maybe this means hiring someone that you can train to help you. Maybe this means hiring someone to help you move or stock your wares. Maybe this means hiring a sales clerk if you have a brick & mortar presence.

If you are ready to hire someone, it means you are all in and giving this business  a real try. You will be producing more, you will hopefully be selling more and so the cycle goes.

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I, personally, have come to this fork in the road many times and continue to. I try to be a good observer of those that have gone before – those that are the friends that I’ve made in this business & people that I admire & respect. How are they doing at their go of it? Does my life look like theirs? Could I make that work? I have been very blessed to have been offered some amazing & wonderful opportunities. Yes, I could have hired a few people. Yes, I could have been a part of a shop or a barn or Lucketts or Chartreuse or Stylish Patina’s barn. Yes, I could have said yes to more projects; more jobs; more people; more furniture; more sales. Do I say yes because I’ve been given a choice? Or do I say no or not right now because I’m paying respect to what I feel is right and true. Thanks for letting me process :)

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I love that as adults we get to make these choices for ourselves. If more is your “Yes” then congrats & much luck to you. If “No” is your yes at the moment then feel good about getting to make the choice.

 

 

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