Today on the blog, we are talking about dressing tables. Dressing tables initially started as small portable cosmetic boxes that were filled with little perfume flasks, combs, nail files, tiny scissors, etc.. Women of high status would have their maids carry them out when the Madame would ask for a comb. The French called these ornate boxes ‘necessaires’ (must-haves).
It wash’t until the late 1700s that finally someone placed the box on a table and drew up a chair.
The dressing table, as we know it today, was developed in Europe in the beginning of the 17th century. By the 18th century, it became known as a mark of social standing as well as an object of fine design and craftsmanship. Two French women, in particular, helped to make the dressing table fashionable.
The first was Madame de Pompadour (1721-1764), the highly influential mistress of King Louis XV. She popularized the once-private morning ritual of the ‘toilette’ by sitting at her grand dressing table to receive guests.
The other woman was Marie-Antoinette (1755-1793), wife of King Louis XVI, who set the tone for matters of fashion, art and design,
And, so while we most probably don’t have maids dressing us and probably don’t wear as much adornments and embellishments, a dressing table is a great piece to own. Who wouldn’t want to get ready for a party in front of this mirror! I have one as part of my own bedroom set and love it.
For this project, I had some left over ‘Linen’ color milk paint from Miss Mustard Seed and also some left over ‘Sturbridge White’ milk paint from Homestead House. I mixed the two powders together and added some water and stirred, stirred and stirred. It’s best if you let milk paint sit for a while before you start painting. I had hoped for lots of chipping. As you may know, milk paint has a mind of its own. It chipped a little but not as much as I had wished for so I helped it along by using my paint can opener tool to scrape off some of the paint and also sanded down some of the edges to expose the wood.
I had someone somewhat interested in a dressing table that wanted more details added. Here is how it looked before the makeover.
I added some pretty details on the drawer front and cabinet doors with Country Chic’s embossing plaster. I also applied the same technique on a previous dresser I finished. You can see it . A wooden floral appliqué was also added on the mirror frame. I think it totally transformed it.
I’ve been enjoying seeing the interior drawers painted in an alternate color. Here I used a mix of Vintage Cupcake and Vanilla Frosting Country Chic Paint.
To me, white and pink truly define “shabby chic”. It’s a perfect combination.
The chair also got a fresh coat of white paint.