Rain. Flooded field and the chicken coop projects on hold…again! So what do you do?
Go to a Brocante armed with your measley €30.00, knowing that there will be an immense wealth of objects that would make even the Count Of Monte cristo blink twice!
A short half hour drive across country to picturesque Chambon in Creuse; a deep ravine leads from the upper pasture land where our barn is situated, down to the little quaint typically higgledy piggledy French town below. En-route is Dynamo our favorite resourcerie.
Specifically good for furniture, fabric, records and china, this is my go to place for curtain material and 1950’s retro furnishings.
Due to the rain we needed a new project. The factory hadn’t progressed since last year’s installation of the mezzanine floors. My accounts office had been completed and now looks like part of the film set of Mad Men. (1950 inspired interior with pre-feminist masculine twist).
Above the office is a dull space. Huge, empty and grey breeze blocked. What a waste. Idea. Printing and design studio for Tony, and I get to share. Needed a new floor. Standard is perfect and the mezzanines arrived on four huge pallets. These would make a great ballestrade and free. Our budget was just €300.00. The crepi or as I call crappy lime paint acted as a base coat to cover the concrete blocks and once dried the yellow acrylic had good colour coverage over the top. The lime paint is cheap at just €6.90 for 15 litres. The yellow was €35.00. I saved having to do two coats of yellow so had double the area I could cover!
The spare mezzanine stair, with a bit of tinkering, fitted and we had a few Ikea lamps that worked fine with the industrial look. Finally furniture. Most we had already. Lots of pieces collected as you do over time from moving, kept from the houses we bought, attic finds and unloved pieces in outbuildings and the odd house clearance.
At the Brocante, sat outside and rather wet, we found an old kitchen table. Missing cutlery drawer and obviously part digested by hungry woodworm, it was a snip at €15.00. We huffed and puffed it into the big blue van and back at the factory, left it to dry out for a few days.
This morning the sun was shining. I dragged the table into a sunny spot, rubbed the table top over with fine sandpaper from England, as the French stuff is diabolical and shreds within minutes, and rubbed in a thick layer of lime wax. This filled the woodworm grooves and grain and after a short cure for ten minutes, a quick buff along the grain to bring to a soft sheen.
Not wanting it to be too pale, I buffed a little Black Bison wax on the legs and edges and a little on the table top where there were a few remnants of the previous cotton covering. I liked their history and texture and wanted to keep them intact, but bring out the weave more. Last buff and voila…finished!
Tony has a similar table but in a darker oak with a lovely split in the top where years of use has rubbed to a lovely smooth groove. Photos soon. Now to push on with wall painting.