What Do You Think of this Style of Furniture?

Having a woodworking blog, I know that a lot of people who follow me are also woodworkers. And if I know woodworkers, it is that they love wood grain. So much so, that the whole idea of painting a piece of furniture that they make is often considered sacrilegious. However, I also know that many women who usually buy furniture for their home would rather have a piece of furniture that goes with their décor. Beautiful wood grain is something many of them don’t even think about when picking out a piece. So I decided to do a little nonscientific poll to see what people think of the following piece of furniture.

This is a buffet my wife bought at an auction. She wanted to paint the base, but leave the top a natural wood tone. She sanded the top and oiled it with hemp oil. Some people call this type of furniture restyle Shabby Chic. I’m not sure if this is technically Shabby Chic or French Country or whatever. My wife calls it Elegant Farm House style.

Below you can see some of the detail of the wood after it’s been painted. To me, the architectural details of the moldings stick out a little more and are not muddled in the wood grain when the piece has been distressed. But what do you think?


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6 thoughts on “What Do You Think of this Style of Furniture?

  1. My vote comes with a caveat, which I thought I should point out. I like this style because I think it’s easy to make and satisfies a market trend. I’ve painted a few pieces and have no problem doing so. In the example you showed I think it looks much better afterward. In fact, I’d love some detail on how this was done as I’d like to add it to my repertoire..
    All that being said, I do think it’s sacrilege to paint a gorgeous live edge specimen of waterfall bubinga or claro walnut.
    There is plenty of room for both styles in my book. If these type of pieces make it into American Woodworker, I might even consider a subscription.
    Thanks for the post as I think it highlights one of topics I blogged about pertaining to Ana White. I think she’s doing the woodworking community a huge service and wish she’d been around 5 – 6 years ago when i started.
    Thanks for the post and I hope I’ve added to the discussion.


    1. Thanks Shawn. I agree with you. Painting over really nice wood grain is pretty dumb in general. However, sometimes we’ll have no choice but to paint over some curly grained veneer in order to balance the piece, but we generally avoid doing that when necessary. That’s why my wife will normally leave the tops of pieces natural to show off some of the grain.


  2. My husband does workworking and he prefers to see the grain. I did this with a small table and he wound up liking it. I love the look of this piece and it does have a shabby chic feel with the mixture of white and wood.


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