…barcelona love

I have very fond memories of the few weeks I spent in Barcelona one summer. I was in my twenties and traveling with friends. We saw every Gaudi building in the city, spending at least an hour sitting across from the Sagrada Familia just in awe. If you’ve never seen it in person you must. It is like nothing else on this planet.

sacred family

We saw Picasso’s early sketches, had cervazas on the beach and tapas in the bars late at night.


Picasso’s self portrait during his Blue Period while in Barcelona.

We even found ourselves witnessing a Spanish wedding on La Rambla.


So, when asked to paint a repeat client’s dresser Barcelona Orange I really was up for the adventure of it. If you’ve followed Blue Egg Brown Nest for a bit, you know that I stick to the neutrals and as far as I venture is a bit into the blues. Orange is on the other end of the spectrum and truth be told, not a favorite hue of mine (Sorry, Emily Houck-Taylor!:))


While painting I just couldn’t help recounting memories of the city and it made me happy. I was even more happy when I realized what was happening with the dresser….I liked it!


If I had to describe the color when on wood, I would say think of a vodka sauce color.


I think the right hardware makes a difference when using this color. Pick something rustic like these awesome cup pulls.






It was worth the adventure!

…painting cane tutorial

Hi Friends.

So, I had 2 new clients bring me cane pieces to refinish and as I was working on them I thought it may be helpful to do another, short tutorial on what I found to work when refinishing a textured surface like cane. There actually is a technique to it because if you go to heavy with your paint, you run the risk of ruining the piece.

Here’s what I started out with:


A local interior designer, Caroline McCandish, brought these over for me to refinish for one of her clients. Gorgeous chairs!



And another new client brought over these twin headboards she found on eBay! I know, I was jealous too:)

A few things I’d like to point out when painting cane.

1. Start with the extremities; the solid wood/legs/arms/etc.

2. Use a smaller brush

3. Wipe paint after dipping

4. Work in a very light, circular motion so as not to let your paint clump.

If you put on too much paint what will happen is that all those little holes will fill and the lines/crevices will fill. You will take away from the texture, consistency and overal look of the piece. You want to work lightly and do a few coats for coverage. You want to keep the lines while covering them with your paint. Go slowly & deliberately.


IMG_1716This is after the first coat. You will notice some brown places if you look closely. Let dry and go back in for another coat, working in your circular motion.



The coverage really depends on your taste and/or your client’s taste.

Here is the video tutorial. Hope it is helpful. PS – Thank you to all my friends/reader that have stuck up for me on YouTube. Most people are lovely, but there are a few haters of chalk paint that somehow still watch my work & feel the need to yell at me 🙁


…weathered wood look & tutorial.

I think I’ve said this before, but the creative process, like anything else in life, is a roller coaster. Sometimes you are going along at a lovely pace, other times more frantic and then sometimes there is a surprise discovery! Need I mention I hate rollercoasters? This weekend was a fun part of ride as I discovered a new technique offered by Annie Sloan herself in her new book Color Recipes!


Annie was kind enough to send me a copy after we were both featured in The Examiner article together. She is such a lovely, talented lady & a super support to Blue Egg Brown Nest.


Color Recipes is a really inspiring book with loads of ideas. I was so excited to see one technique that I did not know how to achieve. I had purchased pieces from Restoration Hardware with the weathered wood, but had no idea how to do it.



There are a few things you need to achieve this weathered wood look. First, and most importantly, you need Oak wood. This means a wood with texture and grain. It will not work with a completely smooth surface.

Second, you need Old White and a good, soft rag.





Step 1: Apply your Old White with your oval Annie Sloan paint brush lightly in small sections

Step 2. Wait 1 minute (depending on your preference for coverage), take your rag and wipe off paint. Apply pressure based on the coverage that you prefer

Step 3. Dampen your rag and go over the places on your piece that you would like to take off more paint

Step 4. Clear wax

What is important to note is that this is a process and involves really playing as you go. Take moments to step back and see your progress and what is happening with your piece. I even went back after the table sat overnight with my wet cloth to take off paint in places (this was BEFORE I waxed). I would recommend not waxing the piece until you are certain you are happy with the result.

If there are scratches or marks in your pieces as there were in mine, that is OK! It adds to the weathered look and someone who gets it, will get it.

I think the best way to explain this technique is my showing you! Here is a new video on The Weather Wood look! (BTW, don’t judge me, I have no make up on and my hair is wet after a very long week with a husband & his man-cold)

Weather Wood Pedestal Table 4 ft diameter…$450. Email cbensten@blueeggbrownnest.com if interested.