Refinishing Wood Furniture for a French Provincial Look

The white finish of French provincial style furniture fits into the romantic theme of an adult bedroom or the princess theme for a girl’s bedroom. Using white or off-white paint, you can turn wood furniture into a French provincial style, giving the furniture a new design purpose. And French provincial decor isn’t limited to bedroom furniture; use the design throughout the house! To achieve the ultimate look, start with a piece of wood furniture that captures the flourish of French provincial design. The furniture will have cabriole legs (bowed leg that curves to a tapered foot), scallops, and decorative grooves.


Begin the refinishing process by protecting the floor. Lay newspaper, plastic, or a folded old sheet beneath the furniture. Remove the drawer and door pulls. If the drawer and door pulls are wood and will be reused, refinish them in the same manner as the furniture piece. Use antique gold to spray paint on metal drawer and door pulls. Remove the doors and drawers. Stand the drawers on end and place doors on a raised object, like a box, to make it easier to paint the sides of the doors.

Sand the wood furniture to roughen up the surfaces for better paint adhesion. Use sandpaper designed for furniture finishing, like 240 grit. Use rags and a vacuum cleaner on the furniture to remove all traces of dust.

Prime and paint

Apply primer as a base for the paint on all displaying surfaces; the inside and back of the furniture and doors and drawers do not require painting unless desired. Primer is also an aid to cover up dark colored wood finishes. Let the primer dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Apply white paint in a low luster or flat finish. A semi-gloss or gloss finish may be used if a shiny finish is preferred. A paint roller can be used on flat surfaces to speed up the painting process. A paint brush will be needed to paint into grooves and channels of the wood design. Apply the paint in the direction of the wood grain. Allow to dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions before applying a second coat if needed. If beverages will be placed on the surface of the furniture, two to three coats of clear urethane will prevent moisture penetration. Urethane is available in satin, semi-gloss and gloss finish, and may be water- or oil-based. If choosing oil-based urethane, apply with a less foam brush, which is less expansive and can then be tossed out when you are finished.

If desired, use gold-colored paint around the edges of drawers and doors, being careful not to get paint on flat surfaces. If the furniture piece is more ornate in design with recessed areas around raised panels, then use gold paint to highlight the recessed area (grooves or channels in the wood design). For an aged appearance, use a rag to immediately wipe off some of the gold paint.


Allow to dry thoroughly, preferably overnight, before reattaching doors, inserting drawers, and attaching door and drawer pulls. Replacing drawer and door pulls with brass or antique gold-colored pieces will offer a step up in elegance.

Natural Care for Wood Furniture

Wood furniture is welcome in many homes. For many people wood furniture is what they want to have. Wood is warmer then plastic and more desirable since it has a beauty all it’s own. Antique furniture is often wood and should be cared for diligently to keep it’s natural beauty. There are several commercial polishes and cleaners on the market today that help to keep wood looking it’s best. If you don’t particularly like the chemicals in store bought furniture products here are some ideas that you may want to try to keep your wood furniture looking it’s very best.

Wood furniture loves moisture. It does not benefit from water in fact water can damage wood furniture. Water is not the best way to clean wood furniture but at times you may have to resort to using water to clean depending on the dirt that is on the wood furniture. If you find that you have to clean your wood furniture with some water follow the water cleanup with some oil polish of some kind to retreat the wood.

Beeswax is one of the best furniture polishes you can use to polish wood furniture. Beeswax gives furniture a wonderful shine and helps develop an antique patina to the wood. If you like to keep the furniture outdoor in the garden, you should consider reading the blog on gardening care which helps to choose a right hedger for your garden.  You can make a furniture polish of beeswax and turpentine to polish your furniture. First melt down an ounce of beeswax. After the beeswax has melted remove the melted beeswax from the stove and put one cup of turpentine into the beeswax and mix them together. Be careful to keep the turpentine away from flames since it is highly combustible. If you want to substitute olive oil for the turpentine you can do that too. Use this furniture polish on your wood furniture and wood floors. This polish can be slippery on floors so use it with caution.

It you want to brighten unpolished wood furniture you can wipe cold tea on the wood. The tea brings out the grain of the wood and it will slightly darken the wood.

Lemon oil is also a good wood polish. You can buy lemon oil in a hardware store. It is easy to use and the lemon oil has a fresh clean scent. Just pour a small amount of the lemon oil on a clean cotton cloth and rub it on the wood furniture. Lemon oil brings out the natural beauty to your furniture and protects the wood.

Helpful Tips on Keeping Table Top Fountain’s Base Dry

The dinner you are serving is delicious and the camaraderie level is high as your guests dine and chat. Adding greatly to the successful and jovial atmosphere is the fountain in the center of the table which is softly making water shapes as a background for all the enjoyment. Wonderful and exciting.

When you decide to have a table top fountain, be sure you also decide to make it a dry table top fountain. This means that you will prepare the fountain and it’s location so that your table will not be damaged by water from the fountain. Most of the damage caused by these types of fountains comes from spray or spills. The fountain will perform it’s magic beautifully but sometimes a little erratically as it charms the viewers.

The base on which the fountain sits is critical and it’s simple to make it a dry space. Go to a good hardware store and purchase a piece of Plexiglas. Be sure the piece of Plexiglas is a good deal larger that just the base of the fountain. There are various thicknesses but usually a ¼ inch piece will do just fine. It has the advantage of being clear and this makes it almost invisible. However you may have a favorite piece of decorated tile or some other fairly large, flat, smooth item that will serve as a base.

Just be sure that this “cover” for a portion of your table is large enough to catch errant drips and small drops while being a very stable place to sit the fountain. Some innovative “fountaineers” have even put their fountain on a rotating base. This is fairly complicated and I’d suggest that a rotating fountain be a second version after you are satisfied with a static one and feel good about the whole process.

Most table damage comes from either a spill or from a splash as the fountain bubbles along. The splashing can be reduced a great deal by lowering the rate of water flow. If your fountain doesn’t have a flow regulator, then try rearranging some of the items inside the fountain. Of course, you can add some decorative pieces to the fountain and place them in such a way to reduce the rate of water flow. A few experiments will show you what you need to do for accomplishing a lower flow rate.

Another cause of damage due to splashes is a low water level in the fountain. Attractive splash guards are common and quite a few are ingenious, so let your creative self help you find one. d It seems that the if the water has a long way to go to get to the bottom, it splashes more. The fountain water is evaporating all the time, especially during the winter when humidity is very low. Just like caring for some plants, take care of the water level in your fountain.

One final note. Be sure your fountain pump stays submerged. If it is not submerged, severe damage and/or failure will occur pretty quickly.

Take these simple precautions and enjoy the atmosphere created by a table top fountain.


-Personal experience