Peinture Chalks It Up
Looking for a piece of statement furniture that looks straight out of an Anthropologie display, but at one-10th the price? A trip to the newly opened Peinture store in Costa Mesa is in your cards. The vintage-furniture store not only sells refurbished shabby-chic pieces, but also puts the creativity in your hands by hosting workshops and selling a miracle paint that'll make you want to repaint everything you see at the next garage sale.
I'm talking about Chalk Paint, created in England by decorative-paint guru Annie Sloan. It's an interior designer and weekend refurbisher's dream because it allows you to paint wood without sanding, stripping or priming and holds perfectly onto almost any surface—including metal, plastic and varnished woods. And a little goes a long way—one quart can easily coat a five-piece bedroom set. It's what inspired interior designer Deborah Cooper-Ramos to open Peinture.
The Anaheim Hills native was frustrated by finding the perfect piece in the wrong color or finish. Is it really worth it to strip, sand, prime and paint the item, or is it wiser to pass on the item and keep searching? She read rave reviews about Chalk Paint and decided to give it a go. At the time, it wasn't sold in U.S. stores, so she ordered it online. "The first time I used it, I stayed up till 2 a.m., just [doing it to] everything in my house," Cooper-Ramos recalls.
She then rented a stall at Country Roads Antiques & Gardens at the Orange Circle, but the popularity of her painted pieces spread so fast in just a few months that she moved into bigger digs. (Fear not, faithful Country Roads patrons—she's keeping her booth, under the quaint name Petit Peinture.) South Coast Collection (or SoCo) off the 405 freeway in Costa Mesa seemed to be a natural fit, with its concentration of trendy and progressive design stores.
Peinture had a soft opening in late December, but it will officially celebrate its grand opening in mid-January. Cooper-Ramos will offer painting workshops ranging from beginner to advanced techniques, and classes range from four hours to an all-day affair. For some, you can bring in your own piece; others will provide practice wood for you to learn more adventurous finishes. Cooper-Ramos says Chalk Paint workshops are her favorite part of her job—after a touch of encouragement, students feel the rush of Chalk Paint's instant gratification and nothing in the house is safe anymore.
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