The Lion Paw: The Best Desk Accessory Ever

I spotted this Lion Paw at a garage sale. There he was sitting among tools  and cheap bric a brac. I knew I had to have him.

The Paw and the frame from the garage sale

The Paw and the frame from the garage sale

I was a little worried because the guy running the sale wanted close to retail prices. I nonchalantly grouped the paw with some other items and asked how much. I was pleasantly surprised by his answer. I also scored a beautiful metal frame but my luck didn’t hold out. I left of stack of picture frames behind when we couldn’t agree on a price, he wanted more than they would be new, they were obviously sentimental. I was very lucky he wasn’t too attached to the paw. That Paw was mine now. He was separated for his original furniture, he was stripped of his original finish but he was still gorgeous. I knew exactly  what I would do with him. With all of his hand carved detail  He would look amazing with a Metal Tarnish Verdigris finish. Time to break out the paint.

Last year Modern Masters sent me one of their metal effects paint kits to  review, check out my original review. Their is primer, metallic paint and ageing patina spray. I am still using it and loving it. Give them a look.

But before I did that I wondered about this paw. What kind of foot was he, hound, wolf, lion. I settled on the Lion. What kind of furniture did he come from. He looked like he would be a base of a bed or the table but his top is so flat and it doesn’t look sawed through when he was removed. Hmmmm it’s a mystery what do you think? I’m still wondering. But now on to the paint. One of my favorite parts of this painting process is the primer, it is the color of milk chocolate. Now who wouldn’t want a big milk chocolate paw. Then the bronze paint, then the copper paint. You only need to do one color of metallic paint, not both but what can I say I love how both color’s interact.

Step by Step from raw woof to aged metal

Step by Step from raw wood to aged metal

Then the ageing spray. I always freak out during this step because the spray takes a while  work and oxidize to create the patina. I made myself walk away and let the spray do it’s job. I was a little worried if it would still work, the paint has been stored in my hot un-climate controlled storage. But after 5 minutes they was my beautiful patina. Just what I though gorgeous! I love the randomness of the finish and that you can’t predict you exact results.  Check his handsome perfection out in my shop.

What I learned from my year in business: Don’t give up, Ever!

I decided to start at the top and work my way up.

Sometimes things don’t work that way. Let me explain: I decided to make beautiful

furniture that I spent a lot of time on and wanted good money for.  I didn’t get the prices I wanted for my pieces. But try try try again. This is what I have learned from my year in being in business for myself. Don’t be afraid to take risks, learn from your mistakes and on’t give up, don’t give up, don’t give up, ever!

I love my Etsy business at my online shop Caribbean Style Decor, my obsession with all things blue, white and shiny; that business is wonderful but erratic $200 one day no money the next day.  I am starting to save for a house I need a steadier source of revenue. I went back to the drawing board and looked the items that brought me the most money, my furniture. I stopped working on my furniture because I didn’t get the prices I wanted for the time and energy I put into refinishing and re-painting.  It is important to pay attention to what the market will bear. I looked over my techniques, I am a perfectionist, my techniques take a lot of time and are

exacting, one table took over 40 hours. I call that one “The Table”.

I sold my furniture in two places a local retailer and on Craig’s List.  I rethought everything and came up with a plan to make My Craig’s list prices profitable. I knew this retailer wasn’t the place to get the best prices for my pieces but they were easy to get into and to work with. I sold all the pieces I had consigned to them and working with that store helped me to figure out where my prices needed to be to sell.

I made up a new set of rules for myself. There were a lot of things I could do to save time and

still achieve the look I wanted. I would spend no more than 8 hours on any one piece. These adjustments would get my prices into the Craig’s list zone.

That’s fantastic news because I LOVE doing the furniture. I love taking furniture ugly ducklings and turning them into gorgeous one of kind pieces.

I have two chairs at home waiting to be worked on. Stay tuned. I’m back at it. …Melissa