I am by no means a professional artist. However, when stepping away from all of the responsibilities of home, parenting, and writing life, I enjoy painting. I can’t say I get involved in anything too crazy, but find it relaxing to create something.
I have been painting and crafting for most of my life. As friends and family members began having children, I found joy in creating painted rocking chairs as one-of-a-kind gifts. After a few requests for personalized items (and being a stay-at-home-mom), I started to make projects for friends-of-friends and clients, too. I enjoy the challenge of custom projects since not everyone will turn out the same and will be unique for each customer.
Freshen Up With Color
One of the most rewarding aspects of this process is when I can take an old, forgotten, or worn out piece of furniture and turn it into something new for a child to enjoy. An example of this transformation can be been seen in the photos below:
The first picture of the dark brown chair is the state I found it in. I got it for a steal – only $5 at a garage sale! A client contacted me through my Etsy shop, asking for a cow-themed chair for her nephew. After sanding it down and applying some wood glue to ‘sturdy it up’, I got to painting! The seat of the chair is red, with white barn doors. The arms and legs of the chair feature a black and white cow print pattern. The back of the chair has the child’s name and a family of adorable cows.
Something Old to Something New
My grandmother had a friend with a decrepit, kind of sad looking chair. It was hers when she was a little girl. Not wanting it to sit around collecting dust anymore, she was looking to get rid of it.
Always on the lookout to stock up on chairs and furniture for future projects, I gladly accepted this chair. But something wasn’t right. I didn’t want to do it over to give to someone else. If I had a history with this woman, then I wanted to keep it that way. Since she had a young great-granddaughter, we made it especially for her.
The “after” pictures show the amazing transformation. The entire chair was painted with a coat of bright, brilliant white. A simple 5-pointed crown is on the back of the chair, with the great-granddaughter’s name underneath. I added a pad and batting to the seat of the chair, along with new pink and gold crown printed fabric. This chair had new life and could be enjoyed by another generation in this family.
Step It Up
Not wanting to gift out large items like rocking chairs, I’ve been asked to create step stools for children as well. Step stools are practical gifts that will last the child a few years. They can be used to get into bed, help in the bathroom when brushing teeth, or just generally be dragged around to get into things – something that kiddos tend to do!
Here are a few examples of the step stools I’ve made.
Practical Gifts for Kids
Another one of my crowning achievements in the world of painting projects was a personalized block set. Each block features a capital and lowercase letter or a number. The other 4 sides are adorned with images related to the child, parents, or family.
While these sets do take a fair amount of time to finish, I can rest assured that this will be a gift that will be played with and treasured for years to come.
Although a majority of my projects seem to be for kids, I have painted some projects for adults as well. Most recently, this planter as a housewarming gift.
Can you spot the hidden Mickey in the hydrangea?
When not traveling, helping in the garden, or working on writing projects, it’s nice to take a break and bust out the paints. To see more of my work, be sure to check out my website and view my entire painting project portfolio!