A Royal Blue Empire

Raise your hand if you love American Empire style furniture.  ::RAISES HAND::

I absolutely love and cherish this style of furniture.  It can range from very utilitarian farmhouse-esque dressers, to fancy eagle-claw footed, beautifully veneered, heirloom quality sideboards and dressers.  It’s been my experience that the more utilitarian pieces are easier to come by…which is fine by me because I happen to prefer the farmhouse chic look…but every once in a while I come across a very unique and more fanciful Empire dresser…

This one…I found this one at a flea market, of all places.  It was just sitting there, all dusty, at the back of this little old lady’s booth.  The mirror was just casually laid across the top, rather than attached upright, showing off it’s beauty…no doubt because the lady was missing the bolts.  It looked frumpy.  And really heavy.  Which is probably why it was still available 3 hours after the market opened (I was late that day!).  As you can imagine, I jumped all over it…that is, I negotiated like an expert and got it for an even better deal than it already was.

Sadly, in my immense excitement to help this classic piece become a modern masterpiece, I totally forgot to snap some before pictures.  You can get an idea of what it looked like before, though, because I totally wasn’t about to paint over the beautiful veneered drawer fronts.

A stunning vanity chest.

A stunning vanity chest.

Just stunning! Right?!?

If you look closely, you can see that this piece wasn’t in the greatest of shape before I bought it.  It appeared to have been exposed to a good bit of water at some point and the veneer was chipped off in many places and cracking/bubbling in others.  After gluing down what I could, I simply left the rest as is and unfilled because I love the way milk paint settles into the recesses and distresses easily off the edges.  Gives it more character!

I used Miss Mustard Seed’s line of milk paint for this piece and, instead of making a custom color like I normally do, I stuck with one of her recipes: flow blue.  I used the same color on The Appolonia last summer and hadn’t used it since, but I knew this was the perfect piece for it.  I just love the way that this more royal-ish blue color complements and contrasts with the red tones of the natural wood.

Flow Blue and the red hues of the wood really complement each other.

Flow Blue and the red hues of the wood really complement each other.

Look at those gorgeous red-hued veneers!

Look at those gorgeous red-hued veneers!

And check out those knobs!  These are NOT glass reproductions picked up at Anthropologie or Hobby Lobby…nope, these are the real deal and are original to the 100+ year old dresser!  They are absolutely gorgeous…

These crystal knobs are original to the piece!

These crystal knobs are original to the piece!

Everything about this dresser is just breathtaking…even the ornate cheval posts for the mirror…

The mirror posts are so beautifully detailed.

The mirror posts are so beautifully detailed.

A close-up look at the detailed post.

A close-up look at the detailed post.

And the beautiful legs…

Beautiful legs

Beautiful legs

A profile of the classic Empire shaped posts

A profile of the classic Empire shaped posts

And look at all that wonderful chippyness!  This is one of the things I love most about milk paint…you really never know how much is going to chip away and give that authentic looking chipped paint appearance.  The empire posts and the top really chipped and chipped and chipped!

The beautifully chippy top.

The beautifully chippy top.

Just look at all of the chipping!

Just look at all of the chipping!

 

I’m in love.  So in love.  This is a piece I wouldn’t mind completely redesigning my bedroom around.  But as luck would have it for its wonderful future owner, I don’t have the time or space to do so, haha.  Therefore, it’s up for sale in my Etsy shop!  And for a limited time, I’m offering 10% off everything in the shop so go check it out.

 

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