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French Provincial Kidney Desk Makeover

Oh happy day! It’s not often I get an offering of pieces like this. I mean, would you pass up this French provincial kidney desk? The lines alone are gorgeous. Not to mention that it offers function too (not just another pretty piece). Today is all about giving this desk a new lease on life. Plus, I’m sharing a sweet giveaway with you too. yay!

Vintage French Provincial Kidney Desk Before Makeover by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

When I received the desk, the original owner said it’s over 100 years old. Well, it definitely is vintage, but not a true antique…yet. It’s most likely from as early as the 50’s because it has the classic faux wood finish to it that was quite popular at the time. Likewise, it is a solid build and far better than most modern furniture today. It’s a keeper.

Vintage French Provincial Kidney Desk Top by Prodigal Pieces | shop.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

*post sponsored by Zibra and contains affiliate links so you can find the products I love to use too. (see full disclosure)

It has dove-tailed drawers and original brass hardware. However, it does have dents, gouges and wear to the top that will require some tending to.

DIY TIME

Because the wood had a faux wood grain and finish, I am super curious to see what was beneath. So, my littlest and I removed the hardware and began to sand the top. psst…she’s the best helper!

Removing Desk Hardware on French Provincial Desk | prodigalpieces.com

Sanding Desk French Provincial Desk Top | prodigalpieces.com

I use my orbital sander to take off the faux finish. However, I am disappointed (but not surprised) to find mixed wood. A mahogany veneer is on top of a pieced poplar top. This is totally normal and isn’t a bad thing. I had hoped to find matching wood, but this is definitely normal for pieces of this era. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still solid, but I had hoped for matching wood for staining purposes. Not to worry, I’m still very excited at this canvas.

NEXT STEPS

First, to get this underway, I pull out my favorite Zibra brushes. You know you’re a DIYer when you get all excited you get to use a new brush. woot! For this project, I’m using this Fan Brush and a Square Brush.

Zibra Fan Brush for French Provincial Desk | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

The Fan Brush is perfect for the curvaceous lines of this desk, and it’s one of my favorite brushes in the line.

Painting Vintage Kidney Desk with Zibra Fan Brush by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

I apply two coats of this beautifully soft antique white letting cure in between coats. Once that is done, I use my Square Brush to apply a color called Basketry to the detail parts.

Painting Vintage Desk with Zibra Square Brush by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Last, but not least, I add time-worn distressing followed by a hand-rubbed wax finish. This adds a soft glow while also creating a protective finish.

THE REVEAL

Here is our gorgeous vintage lady all dressed up and ready for many more years.

Antique White Vintage French Provincial Desk and Chair by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #furniture #shabbychic #home #homedecor

French Provincial Desk Drawers with Ornate Details by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #furniture #home #homedecor #vintage #frenchprovincial

I’m truly smitten with the outcome. I could have went many ways with it in color, but I want to create a subtle beauty that doesn’t need to boast gilded details. Also, notice I left the brass pulls and knobs in their muted patina.

Antique White French Provincial Desk and Chair by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #vintage #desk #furniture #home #homedecor

Gorgeous Antique White Kidney Desk Top Refinished by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #furniture #shabbychic #desk #home #homedecor

The details took quite some time, but it was all worth it. The accent paint showcases the carvings beautifully, especially on those cabriole legs.

Vintage Kidney Desk Drawers on French Provincial Desk by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #shabbychic #furniture #home

In addition, I’m excited to say that the desk was sold before even listing it. That allows me to give a generous portion to my friend, Mandy, and her Paid in Full Ministry towards their purchase of a building.

GIVEAWAY TIME

Now, Zibra and I are all about empowering you to tackle your own DIY project. I invite you to take a second to check out the newly designed website. So much to see! We can’t wait to get these awesome brushes in your hands. You can enter to win this set of finish brushes for your very own.

Zibra Paint 3 PC Detail Kit Giveaway at Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Also, do pin and share my French provincial kidney desk makeover to inspire others to give DIY a try.

What a beautiful transformation of a vintage French provincial desk in Hollywood regency style by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #furniture #diy #vintage #shabbychic #frenchprovincial

Up next, this misfit chicken needs to find a new purpose. Don’t you think? See the new chicken life HERE.

Wooden Chicken Before | prodigalpieces.com

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More makeovers like this French Provincial kidney desk:

A vintage French provincial lingerie chest was tired and worn, but Larissa of Prodigal Pieces gave it new life with a limewash effect. See the details at prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #home #homedecor #furniture #farmhouse #vintageSimply beautiful. Larissa of Prodigal Pieces created this French Provincial headboard bench with a custom built frame as well as a handmade tufted French mattress. | DIY details at prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #handmade #diy #homedecor #furniture #shopping

Comments

  1. ColleenB.~Tx. says

    OMG; love the style of that desk. Love what you done with it; simply Gorgeous.
    At the moment I really don’t have anything to paint; well I do, but it’s just too cold to be working out in my shed with no heat.
    I may need to break down and buy myself a space heater.
    Thank You for this wonderful giveaway opportunity.
    By the way; you have a darling little helper there.

    • Larissa says

      I am right there with you. I wanted to keep it for my new home some day. It’s curves are funtastic! I’m also with you on the no heat. Working in my workshop in down and layers is no fun.

  2. Linda Priebe says

    Oh Larissa I’m in love with this desk. I can imagine sitting there journaling with a cup of tea or writing a letter to someone or oh, writing out my Christmas cards! It’s a thing of beauty! I’d love to have it!!!

    • Larissa says

      How fun! Thank you, Linda. It truly was a fun piece to recreate.

  3. Mary Kaiser says

    It turned out so beautiful. Thanks for the contest and my chance to win a set of those really great brushes!

  4. Alison S says

    Thank you for the time you take to share your makeovers with us. If I were to win the paint brushes I would paint a dresser that has been waiting for a long time.

    • Larissa says

      It’s my pleasure. Sounds like you have a fun project. 😀

  5. Ginny says

    You did an awesome job as usual!!! Love how you accented all the beautiful details of this piece of furniture! I have so many projects that require paint but I think I need to start with something small that can be worked on indoors because it is to darn cold here in my neck of the woods 🙂

    • Larissa says

      aww…thank you! That was a time-consuming part, but so worth it. Same here on the weather. I do enjoy winter, but we have far too much of it for my liking. Our last two weeks have had not a stitch of sun and rain, snow, and hail the size of marble. Enough for me. haha.

  6. Felecia D Elliott says

    I absolutely love how this desk turned out. I have a desk (not like this, lol) I’d like to try this on!!!

    • Larissa says

      Wonderful!! Thank you so much, Felicia. You will love these brushes.

  7. Emily Medders says

    What a beautiful desk. If I won I would a vintage Drexel buffet that is under my tv.

  8. Susie Wilcox says

    That desk is amazing. What a great job you did with bringing it back to life. I learn so much about how to handle the issues you run into when redoing your furniture. Thanks for all the tutorials and the give away. I am currently redoing a sewing machine cabinet that belonged to my grandmother. I am still not sure where I am going with it, but get inspired by your work. I would love to have some new supplies to help me along the way.

    • Larissa says

      It’s such fun for me because I enjoy what I do and want others to feel enabled too. Thank you, Susie. I love that you have her sewing machine cabinet, period. So many toss those aside. I hope you have fun with it! 😀

  9. Claudine says

    What a beauty, you brought this Grande Dame back to life. 🙂 Beautiful job.

  10. Lisa Viles says

    I love the way the desk turned out! It is so romantic! I would love to try the Zibra brushes on a side table that I have been thinking of painting.

    • Larissa says

      I like your description as it suits what I was after. Thank you, Lisa. I have know doubt you’ll love these brushes too.

  11. lyn says

    Really cool makeover. And I think I’d love using that fan brush.

    • Larissa says

      Thanks! It’s seriously the most amazing brush for many uses.

  12. Amy says

    Absolutely beautiful! I love the colors and the time you took with the details! I’d love to have Zibra brushes too!

    • Larissa says

      That makes my heart happy, Amy. Thank you. I’m all about making those details shine instead of blending in.

  13. MaryAnn Smith says

    I’d use the brushes to paint some baskets I bought at the thrift store.

  14. Rebecca - NC says

    You do have the most adorable helpers!! And what a fantastic makeover!!!!!! Just gorgeous! It’s a good thing it sold right away… I’d have been tempted to try to make a place for it!!! And what a lovely way to celebrate such good fortune. You inspire in so many ways. Thank you!!! 😊

    • Larissa says

      I second that, tee hee! Thank you. I was debating on keeping it to, so I’m equally happy. 😀 Thank you for your kind words, Rebecca.

  15. Mother Deer says

    You did a beautiful job on that desk, and your helper is adorable 🙂 I would try the new brushes out on a jewelry box if I should win. Thank you for this opportunity.

    • Larissa says

      She makes my work fun. Thank you for the love. I have all the faith you’ll love the brushes too! 😉

  16. Annette Santana says

    Oh my God, it is stunning. Loved how it turned out.

  17. Marci says

    Beautiful! I would love to try my hand at bringing a waterfall ? dresser back to life. It was in my mothers house for as long as I can remember. Thank you for sharing and teaching us all how to do it. I also have several headboards that are screaming at me to make benches. Would love to use great tools to make these dreams come true.

    • Larissa says

      Those are lovely pieces and are some of my favorites to do too. 😀 You sound like me!

  18. Sheryl Danner says

    Your work on this desk is absolute perfection!

  19. Amanda Pennington says

    Lovely! The shape is so graceful!

  20. Cate Cooper says

    VERY nice!!! Just Love, love, love what you did Larissa! And your little helper should get some of the credit too! 🙂

  21. Kim says

    Beautiful job, as always!

  22. Chris Davis says

    I really want to paint furniture but I have absolutely no place in my home or property to do so. So I’ve taken to painting vintage frames and wall decor. I would love some good brushes.

    • Larissa says

      It does take so much effort to paint at home. Glad you found an outlet!

  23. gwen says

    such a beautiful piece of furniture and the details with your paint job make it usable! it turned out really nice!

  24. l bryant says

    Just loved the desk. Growing up my sister and had “Sears” French provincial furniture. Now with a granddaughter I can’t wait to get a few pieces for the little guest room she uses!!!

  25. Deanna says

    The desk turned out gorgeous. And the donation you made due to the sale….blessed! Thank you for all that you do.

    • Larissa says

      I am so excited that this worked out that I could help them. yay! Thank you so much, Deanna.

  26. Sue Pagels says

    I’ve already won one of your wonderful give-aways, (so I am not entering) but just wanted to say how delicious this desk is! Soft and subtle, a beautiful job and a beautiful piece of furniture! Another wonderful job Larissa!

  27. Becky Drake says

    Excellent color choice!

  28. Donna says

    I love that desk style. Makeover is nicely done.

  29. Cindy says

    This desk makeover made my heart sing! I would love to find something like that. However, as a novice T2T/furniture makeover person, I would be nervous! This inspires me to keep going on my little pieces that I find (and are quickly filling up any and all nooks and crannies!). Thank you!

    • Larissa says

      How absolutely fun to hear, Cindy. Thank you! You can do it!

  30. Audra says

    Very pretty! I would paint the buffet in my dining room…

  31. Peggy says

    Would love to try those brushes!!!

  32. Sonja Hansen says

    Gorgeous is the perfect description. Great find and beautiful work. The first thing I will paint with Zebra brushes is the wall fold down desk in our kitchen. It will need an upgrade when I have finally finished painting the kitchen cupboards. I am anxious to try the fan brush.

    • Larissa says

      You are so kind to say so, Sonja. I really tried to revive this piece and give it justice. I just know you’ll find the brushes a delight to use.

  33. Denise L says

    The desk is gorgeous! I have a few pieces that could use a makeover… a fireplace mantle, a bench made from a bed frame (I picked up on the curb – free!) and I also have some barstools… where do I start? LOL

  34. Linda says

    you always find great pieces…that looks fabulous…

    • Larissa says

      I tell ya, they find me! 😀 I don’t look much and folks bring them to me. Thanks!

  35. Fiona says

    Absolutely gorgeous! I love the two tone paint job. The details really stand out. Fantastic job. 🙂

    • Larissa says

      Thank you. I totally wanted to draw them out and feature them.

  36. Melva says

    Stunning makeover! Once again, you hit it out of the park! The details show off beautifully . Seems like those brushes really help make your vision come to life. Thanks for the inspiration. Oh, by the way, you’re beautiful little helper is a keeper. 😍

    • Larissa says

      Thanks so much, Melva. It truly was a joy to work on it. Yes, the brushes do!

  37. Fran Legler says

    Another home run….right over the fence!!!

  38. Anita says

    I love everything you do, but I think the colors on this one is my favorite!! I can see that sitting in my home. Keep up the awesome makeovers!

  39. Michele says

    How very pretty! I love ‘shabby chic’ and this dresser and the color is perfect. Truly an inspiration for an old sewing desk that I have. Not quite as fancy, but I think it will paint up nicely. Love your little helper, too. I bet she will grow up to be a great repurposer!

    • Larissa says

      Ooh…that sounds like so much fun! Yes, my kids are always itching to find a new project. We just need more room! 😀

  40. Kim says

    Once again, you amaze me with your vision! I love the colors you chose. I’m so glad you didn’t use gold on the details. Some people overdo the gold sometimes but your color is gorgeous.

    Too many projects to name that I could use the brushes for! I love the few Zibra brushes I have.

    • Larissa says

      That’s so sweet of you to say. Yes, gilding is delightful in the right times. This one seemed to beg to be soothing. Thank you, Kim.

  41. Susan says

    Larissa you breathed new life into the desk with your CPR – Creative Painted Revamp! LOL, but seriously your vision for every piece you share never ceases to amaze me. Well done!

  42. Janet W Kynerd says

    Always enjoy your makeovers and love that your children enjoy working with you.

    • Larissa says

      They make what I do all the more enjoyable and memorable. Thank you, Janet.

  43. Catherine ten Hertog says

    What a truly beautiful makeover you have given this pretty lady. So happy you sold it and are giving back. Love all your work.

    • Larissa says

      I couldn’t wait to tell the ministry about how it all worked out. Yahoo!!

  44. Cindy says

    You’re painting technique really brought out the beauty of this piece!

  45. Toni says

    Wow, what a beautiful desk. As always, a great make-over, Larissa.

  46. Cindy B says

    I have an old nightstand that needs paint!

  47. Karen Cofield says

    I love this piece and your choice of colors. Your creative vision is amazing! I’ve seen some adds about the Zibra brushes you used. I
    would love to try them on a few of my pieces.

    • Larissa says

      I surely did a happy dance when I received it. Who wouldn’t? haha. You will love the Zibra brushes.

  48. ae minx says

    I’ve got an old bookcase that could use some new paint and a makeover. That’s what I would do first with some new brushes

  49. Judy Burnside says

    Wow! The piece is stunning. I also love Victorian – my dream a long time ago was to own a large Victorian home to remodel – but sometimes God has other plans in mind. But my heartstrings have always been to that era of furniture, so feminine and artistic. I love how the colors you chose truly highlight the beauty of the piece. Blessings to you and your family as we move into the season of winter.

    • Larissa says

      I don’t blame you. It’s a totally a timeless style that extends ages. Thank you for all your affirmative words, Judy.

    • Larissa says

      Right? I envision it in my bedroom as a place to pen letters. One day…

  50. Melissa Storms says

    The desk turned out beautiful, another inspiration. I have a French provincial bedroom set and I keep going back and forth on what to do with it. I just don’t know if I want to paint or restain. I can’t wait to see what you do with the chicken.

    • Larissa says

      Thank you, Melissa. They are such beautiful pieces and we have several too. I’m excited to share my rooster! 😀

  51. Alisa Bradshaw says

    I love love love this desk!!!! Wish I could have been the lucky buyer! Another beautiful job, Larissa 💜

  52. Kaycee says

    Hello Larissa, What a beautiful piece to start with. I love the color combination and wax all those pretty details really stand out! I am not surprised she sold so fast and that you were able to give to Mandy’s fund. I was impressed with your helper on this project too! Have a great and blessed day.

    • Larissa says

      Hi Kaycee! 😀 It truly was something I hoped to restore, at least the top anyway. This worked out perfectly for all considered – a God wink!

  53. Jane Clelland says

    Oh my gosh! It turned out so much better than I expected. I love it, and that’s not usually my style. I really hope to win the brushes. I have a couple of dressers I’d like to paint, plus a really old carpenters tool chest. This chest is large and heavy, it had been painted a bright pink many decades ago. I started to strip it, but that was not a simple task. What color would you suggest using. I would do some distressing and let the pink show a little. I think LOL!.

    • Larissa says

      Yahoo!! Thanks so much, Jane! Sounds like you have fun projects at hand. You could go many ways with the chest, but a soft white or aqua would be a fun pairing.

  54. Jennifer says

    I love the desk. In my opinion, the color you used for the details looks better than if you had used gold. I love it!

    • Larissa says

      Thanks! Yeah, I felt gold would have been a little tacky and too typical. haha. T=

  55. Michele L Meacham says

    Larissa … your work is always amazing … but with this desk, you have totally outdone yourself!!! You are such an inspiration!!!

    • Larissa says

      Michele, you are so very sweet to say so. Thank you for the smile! 😀

  56. Kathy Emerick says

    I have been looking for this desk for about 5 years now. Hopefully will find one soon.

  57. Alicia H says

    Beautiful makeover! If I won the brushes I would repaint my woodwork, china cabinet, and kitchen table set!

    • Larissa says

      Thanks! Those are always fun to redo. You will love the brushes!

  58. Linda says

    I would love to repaint my dining chairs.

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Client Love

I love it! Larissa is amazing. She listened to what I wanted and then she took care of the rest! This is my second piece I've bought from her and I'm in love! I highly recommend her.

~ Laurel

Prodigal Pieces
2020-03-21T21:34:13-04:00

~ Laurel

I love it! Larissa is amazing. She listened to what I wanted and then she took care of the rest! This is my second piece I've bought from her and I'm in love! I highly recommend her.

I love this cart, it's exquisite. The item was received in extremely secure packaging, no damage to the item. The delivery person was very professional and courteous. Larissa of Prodigal Pieces is so very amazing. A rating of 10 is deserved. Thank you, Larissa.

~ Stephanie

Prodigal Pieces
2020-03-21T21:39:34-04:00

~ Stephanie

I love this cart, it's exquisite. The item was received in extremely secure packaging, no damage to the item. The delivery person was very professional and courteous. Larissa of Prodigal Pieces is so very amazing. A rating of 10 is deserved. Thank you, Larissa.

I should have left this review MONTHS ago! I absolute love this lunch bag. I honestly carry this 5 days a week. It is the perfect size! Not only can you put your lunch in it, it can also hold your book. I enjoy reading at lunch, so I have all I need in one cute bag. Thank you so much Larissa!

~ Mikki

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2020-03-21T21:43:16-04:00

~ Mikki

I should have left this review MONTHS ago! I absolute love this lunch bag. I honestly carry this 5 days a week. It is the perfect size! Not only can you put your lunch in it, it can also hold your book. I enjoy reading at lunch, so I have all I need in one cute bag. Thank you so much Larissa!

Awww…I love this sweet Cat with an attitude!! SO SO adorable! Well worth the money, and he will become a priceless treasure in my home! Thanks Larissa for always making your ideas turn into true treasures!

~ Sharon

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2020-03-21T21:45:37-04:00

~ Sharon

Awww…I love this sweet Cat with an attitude!! SO SO adorable! Well worth the money, and he will become a priceless treasure in my home! Thanks Larissa for always making your ideas turn into true treasures!

Perfect purchase from start to finish! Absolutely adorable piece so creatively thought out. Packed with the greatest of care with lightening fast delivery. Very customer-oriented and friendly crafter. Could not ask for more! Thank you!

~ Deanna

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2020-03-21T21:52:00-04:00

~ Deanna

Perfect purchase from start to finish! Absolutely adorable piece so creatively thought out. Packed with the greatest of care with lightening fast delivery. Very customer-oriented and friendly crafter. Could not ask for more! Thank you!
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