Overhead Projector Chest Seen On HersitePainted Dresser By Meranda-Devan For Hersite

If you like the pieces above, its all due to having an overhead projector. 

An overhead projector has been my go-to tool in the past when hand painting custom furniture. 

There is no way I would have the talent to create such beautiful artwork without spending hours hand drawing a particular design.

Create Interesting Patterns On Furniture By Cutting Your Own Stencils

Find your own patterns simply by using a stencil cutter. Cutting your own stencils can be time consuming but extremely rewarding to get the exact design you have in mind.

The first dresser pattern (seen above), was transferred off a patterned Ikea storage box.

If you are considering a custom pattern, buy a cutting tool that heats up that has a sharp rolled edge.  These stencil cutters work well with clear stenciling sheets.

Blow Up Pictures From Dover Pictorial Archive Pattern Books

Create one of a kind painted furniture by transferring images that no one else has!  You can find interesting patterns from books in your local library or order any of Dover Pictorial Archive pattern books on Amazon for pattern ideas for furniture or your walls.

In the past, I have photocopied images from these books because they include the most beautiful floral designs and motifs from vintage and antique drawings. All the drawings may be used royalty-free.

Simply photo-copy your print onto a transparency, and by using an overhead projector you can determine the size of the graphic by moving the projector closer or farther away from the piece of furniture.  It couldn’t be easier or more affordable to transfer a graphic.

Overhead projectors also work well for transferring large designs or graphics on to walls. If you lack talent to draw free hand (like I do), overhead projectors make it simple and easy for perfect designs every single time.

The possibilities are endless!  Here are some books to consider…..

  • The book Repeating Patterns 1100 – 1800 is an excellent book for cutting out your own designs and stenciling them on to the wall or furniture. The stencils can be very easy to quite complicated. This book and CD-Rom set contains a stunning collection of repeating patterns from the Middle Ages, Renaissance and Baroque.
  • 800 Classic Ornaments and Designs contains 144 pages of ornaments such as decorated with flowers. This is a treasury of royalty-free art that includes classical columns, a rich selection of heraldic designs, and a variety of charming calligraphic alphabets. A priceless resource for artists and designers.
  • Fabrics and Wallpapers for Historic Buildings is a volume for everyone involved in restoring or researching American houses built between 1700 and 1900. An interesting guide for those who enjoy researching authentic wallpaper designs.

Painted Dresser By Meranda-Devan For Hersite

 A Previous Zebra Dresser – Made With An Overhead Transparency. 

See the full post – My Sexy Faux Wood Zebra Chest

Overhead Projector Paint Finish Meranda Snyder For HersiteAnother, almost identical French Provincial chest with the exact same pattern

Overhead Projector Paint Finish Meranda Snyder For HersiteOverhead Projector Paint Finish Meranda Snyder For HersiteToday, I no longer use Sculpey clay to make my ornamental appliques.  In this picture, to make some additional appliques for a burl chest, I used to Sculpey clay to make the templates.  These molds harden in the oven, which also can burn and smoke.  After the molds were hardened,  I push the clay into the templates, use a pick or knife to carefully remove the design and harden them again in the oven. 

I no longer use this technique, when there are simpler ways to copy designs. 
Overhead Projector Paint Finish Meranda Snyder For Hersite

Meranda Devans Faux Burl Chest

Here you can see, I took an existing pull, (which is on the chest) to make a design, which was hammered right beside the existing pulls. The top of the flourish is the real handle, the bottom flourish is the clay.

Meranda's Faux Burl Dresser

The area circled is clay. 

Sculpey clay can be useful for so many projects, but I found the clay hurt my hands.  The clay has to be soft enough to push into the molds, and it would take me a good 20 minutes before I could get to that point.  My hands hurt for days!  Microwaving, or softening the clay didn’t work for me either, so I had to find another way to make my own molds.

Overhead Projector Paint Finish Meranda Snyder For HersiteI no longer use Scupley Clay, above is my new go-to mold maker- Amazing Mold Putty

Since then, I have discovered Amazing Mold Putty.  It comes soft, and has a working time of 2- 3 minutes.  It has a part A, and part B, which are mixed together, which is then applied to your object.  The best thing about this product, is that it is bendable. 

You can use it to make mold templates, and use the material as a mold itself.  If you are looking to make an applique that bends, this product will do that for you. 

In the past, I found sculpey clay is rock hard, making it almost impossible to retrieve a soft mold out of it. 

The line also carries Amazing Mold Resin, which produces a really hard finished product.  A two part resin system allows you to make a mold template, and when it is set up, you simply bend the putty to remove your object. 

 Above I copied an ornate shelf which I plan to making duplicates using concrete.  So many of the vintage metal appliques I have found on ebay, have been duplicated for my dressers, tables, and chairs.

  Meranda Snyder For Hersite 1

A Close up look of the 9 drawer zebra dresser pulls. 

Meranda Snyder For Hersite 2

Circled areas are those made with clay

Meranda Snyder For Hersite 3

A Simple Round Pull, with 3 clay appliques

Borrow my techniques for your own custom furniture business!



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  • Jazz Caldwell

    Really stunning work. I’ve never been a fan of stenciling because I hadn’t seen it done in such an exquisite way. Your work is absolutely beautiful!