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Old 12-02-2014, 05:15 PM
Location: Southwest Washington State
25,390 posts, read 16,348,181 times
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Originally Posted by Briolat21 View Post

Chalk paint has invaded the "antique stores" in mine and surrounding towns. One day you walk in and see a beautiful mahogany china cabinet.

2 days later you see a "shabby-chic" robin's egg blue (or hunter's green, or fire-engine red) china cabinet with the same lines.

I've told the shop keep what a travesty it is, but I recognize they've got to do what sells. Its trendy right now, but like most trendy things, it won't last forever.

I would think that the good thing about chalk paint is that they're painting on top of the stain/poly that's already there (i.e. they're not sanding before painting) -- I would think that makes refinishing back to wood possible in the future (if a tremendous amount of work).

Also as far as "old maple pieces from the 50's" not having intrinsic value -- mid-century (which is by definition the '50s) is ridiculously hot right now, so from that perspective if the OP wanted to sell this is probably among the best of times to do so.

I wouldn't (personally) paint an original piece that was not painted unless there were something significantly wrong with it (broken leg, broken drawer) that you were also going to be changing ... because at that point the value is truly gone anyway.

For instance removing drawers and putting in baskets. Removing a door from a china hutch and just using the shelves... at that point its open season to repurpose as desired and if that means painting (rather than a landfill) - have at.
I wouldn't paint over true mahogany either. But I've noticed that an awful of lot of those old mahogany tables were veneered. But solid mahogany? Get that piece to a professional who can bring back that marvelous mahogany grain, which is unique and unsurpassed by any other wood.
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Old 12-02-2014, 08:01 PM
1,167 posts, read 1,149,352 times
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Originally Posted by luv4horses View Post
You guys are great. Thanks for your remarks. My pieces are probably from the 50's but I'm not sure they would bring much. I do like them because I have collected 3 similar pieces and they do have a wonderful patina. So I would only be preserving them for their utility and the fact that they are sweet to see. So hear ye, hear ye! They will stay the same.

I just wish I had room for both these and a few of the newer, lighter colored pieces being produced today. Admittedly these newer, lighter colored pieces will never have any historical value and though new are probably crappily made. They are just intriguing in small doses.
Would you be willing to post pictures of the pieces you're considering refinishing? It would help those advising you on what to do whether they're worth keeping and restoring, or doing whatever you feel like with them.

As someone else has said, mid century modern is ridiculously in style right now, and people will pay for it, even if it's not rare but is original and in good condition.
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Old 12-02-2014, 09:02 PM
Location: Philaburbia
33,089 posts, read 61,944,370 times
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Originally Posted by silibran View Post
I see old maple pieces going begging at thrift stores. Mid century modern--the antithesis of the old maple stuff--is what is hot, hot, hot.
What's mid century modern or not epends on the style of the furniture, not the wood it's made out of.

Maple is rock solid and will last forever. Paint plywood and other cheap furniture to your heart's content. But maple? Heresy.
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