Let your imagination soar with this Princess Castle Wardrobe!
There is something so magical about a child's imagination; especially a little girl's dream play time that involves a princess dress and a castle.
When my own daughters were growing up, I made sure their dress-up stash was plentiful.
It wasn't the "break the bank" kind of plentiful. More like my old dresses, hand-me-down Halloween costumes, and lots of thrift store finds.
And they always had a special place to store these clothes that were the ticket to transport them into the creative and magical space of their minds!
Today's project plays into this theme.
These petite wardrobes are child-like in size.
I usually paint them in hopes that they will find their way to a child with an overactive imagination!!!
This wardrobe was originally my Let Them Eat Cake armoire, which I loved creating, but she sat unclaimed! It happens, and I am ok with that. I see it as an opportunity for me to practice more design skills and other painting techniques.
Watch this transformation on YouTube:
Check out this week's video here.
Prepping this wardrobe to transform
To prepare for the new look, I sanded off the majority of the old design and gave it a good cleaning before I painted the entire armoire in Onyx (Terra clay paint black).
I knew I wanted to paint a dreamy sky scene, and I love black as an underlayer.
Unable to get the whole princess dress-up out of my mind, I decided to go with it.
Truth be told, I was struggling to find inspiration so I began a google search for castles, and came across one of my favorite YouTube artists, Joni Young, and her amazing fantasy castles.
I was instantly drawn to the "castle in the sky" message, and the way the earth seemed carved out and placed into a cloud of cotton candy.
Instinctively, I knew I had to try it so I gathered my Dixie Belle chalk paints to match as best I could to her acrylic colors, and just began painting alongside her; directly onto the armoire without an ounce of trepidation!
For this Princess Castle Wardrobe, I let the paint guide me!
Confession time: I LOVE painting clouds!!!! I just love clouds in general, and I've pulled them into my furniture art many times!
As a matter of fact, I have fond memories of lying on the cool grass with my best friend Cheri as a small child, speaking about what we saw in the clouds! To this day. Zadie and I recognize colors and shapes in clouds almost daily.
This color combo of clouds really moves me. Just paint, a brush, and some guidance. The chalk mineral paint moves beautifully for the cloud effect.
I applied the base clouds with a large 3" standard hardware store paintbrush, and I used smaller brushes to add details to the clouds.
And finally, the Best Dang brush blends the clouds perfectly for that dreamy look.
Once I was comfortable with the clouds, I began the small piece of cameo-sized earth and the castle.
This process was so incredibly easy!!!
Joni paints from her brain which blows my mind! I am thankful that she shares her art and allows others to imitate it.
Painting the waterfalls, the crumbling edges of earth, and the mossy vines was VERY invigorating!
I decided to add some more whimsy details for that fully fantastical feel I was going for!
I enjoyed it so very much, and I have most of the process captured on video for you to watch ME LEARN! It is my hope that it will inspire you to try something new. You might just surprise yourself!
Adding the final touches to the Princess Castle Wardrobe
Had I had more time to devote to this piece, I would have wrapped the scene around the sides, but I needed to finish this up as I wanted it to be the feature piece in my new booth!
So I played off the exposed black underlayer and left the sides black. However, I finished them off with a single coat of Silk in Anchor (over the black clay paint). Silk has a gorgeous sheen and doesn't require a top coat, so I could paint the sides and be done.
The front of the wardrobe is sealed with Terra Wax. I chose it for its hardshell and hardy finish. I applied this wax with the best dang brush in a circular motion. The next morning, I gently buffed it to a light and subtle sheen.
I am so proud of this piece!
I just KNOW it was made for a little girl out there, that doesn't even know it is waiting for her!
Its tiny rod is ready to hold the little princess dresses.
The four little shelves are ready to hold the buckets of plastic high-heeled shoes that go clackity clack as she walks around the house.
The dresses you see inside this wardrobe now hang nicely in my grandkids' dress-up closet here in my home.
They were worn by my now 16 yr old Zadie, my 13 yr old granddaughter Sophie, and now the three younger girls: Harlow, Kinsey, and Kambree!
And to be honest, those girls have also dressed up the boy grandkids too! LOL!
It is magic in the making, and I'm here for it!
Another DIY project to inspire you!