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How to Create a Gradient Effect

For some time I had been thinking about upgrading a piece of furniture, but I was patiently waiting for inspiration. I started doing research here and there and it was while watching videos on YouTube that the inspiration came…I wanted an ombré pink chest of drawers at all costs. But how am I going to achieve a shaded, gradient effect? And that’s when I thought, why not La vie en rose with Colorantic.

We all watch YouTubers, who seemingly effortlessly create works of art. I love the way Bella Renovare’s Crys’Dawna works. She uses colors with such panache and without fear, she seems to let her imagination run wild as the work progresses.

My biggest mistake was jumping in with both feet, and that without any technical experience. Once my project was finished, I was very disappointed because it is the exact opposite of what I was looking for. Now I have to fix the whole thing, so I started from scratch.

front chest of drawers

Step 1 – Prepare the Dresser

First, I removed the handles and thoroughly cleaned the entire piece of furniture using Cleaner and Varnish Remover. I sprayed on the cleaner, let it sit for about 30 minutes and then rinsed twice to remove all residue.

As soon as this step was completed, I was sanded my furniture very lightly, only to scratch the surfaces. I wiped well to remove all the dust.

Subsequently, I applied two coats of Colorantic oil-based primer since the varnish was oil-based and Colorantic paint is water-based. I sanded lightly between each coat, but one coat of primer would have been enough.

Being heavy, I left the dresser in my room to work on it. Fortunately, Colorantic products do not have a strong odour and are non-toxic so I was still able to sleep in my room.

Step 2 – Creation

I loved the Peony color, but unfortunately, I had too little left for my project and being in liquidation, it was impossible to get it. So I mixed Peony and Dusty Rose to obtain a very beautiful shade of pink in sufficient quantity to work.

Feel free to have fun mixing colours!

The colours from top to bottom are: Ballerina, Dusty Rose, mixture of Dusty Rose and Peony and finally Peony.

I had a different brush for each colour, and between coats I kept the brushes in individual plastic bags.

Subsequently, I applied two coats of each colour where I wanted to better visualize the transition zones. Blending sounds easy, but it’s not, so do it a little bit at a time.

The technique to achieve a gradient effect is to dip your brush in the Peony colour and apply a thin layer of paint at the bottom of the Peony transition line and (Dusty Rose and Peony) then take your brush (Dusty Rose and Peony) and add some paint above this line. Then, with the Peony brush, move vertically, in a circle, then do the same with (Dusty Rose and Peony). During this time, keep your paint wet with your spray bottle. Now take your 55mm Dry Brush and continue to blend and soften going vertically, in circles and horizontally until you can’t see a distinct line.

Be sure to clean the blending brush thoroughly with a clean cloth as you go. Then go to the next transition line. Continue this process until you are satisfied with your work.

Step 3 – Finishing

To finish the project, I used Colorantic matte varnish, all over the dresser.

Then I applied natural beeswax to the drawer slides for smoother movement. I putnew decorative handles … here is my job finished and I was very satisfied this time!

I really wanted a pink chest of drawers, and I absolutely loved achieving a gradient effect. It’s not a perfect ombre, but I’m out of Peony to try again.

I guess I will refinish this chest of drawers at a later date, with something new.

La vie en rose with Gillian Peddie and Colorantic products. 


Until next time, have fun!

Gillian Peddie




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