Monday, July 22, 2013

Re-painting Syroco

I've been "prettying" up lots of stuff lately.  Yesterday, I painted all day.  Today, the plan was to photograph everything.  So, of course, it rained all day.  This morning, I was able to squeeze a few things into a little sliver of sunlight on my deck, but then the clouds rolled in and that was it for the day. 

My photos are always better when they are taken in natural light.  I've tried to set up a photo area with lights and background, but the colors are always distorted.

So, since my picture taking plans were shot, I picked up the paintbrush again. 

When I first started re-painting things, I thought the easiest and best way to do it was to use spray paint.  Even though I was putting a coat of primer on everything, the paint seemed to chip if a breeze blew by.  Now, I'm brushing everything and I really like the way it's turning out.  Of course, it takes quite a bit longer,  but if I'm going to sell some of these things, I want them to look good and have strong, solid coats of paint on them.  I was afraid that I'd end up with brush strokes, but it turns out fine.

I just love the old Syroco home d├ęcor items.  When I was a kid, my mother saved Top Value and S&H Green stamps.  I loved to stick them in the book for her.  She bought lots of gold Syroco with the stamps.  We had the, obligatory, ornate, gold shelf, mirror, and candle sconce set.  (I don't think there was a single home in the 1960's without this set).  I also remember a set of large gold keys hanging on the wall.

Over the past few years, I've started seeing the Syroco being re-painted in all kinds of different colors and I really like it.  Here's a couple of my painted pieces.




Here's some picture frames that I re-painted.  I still need to distress and seal the teal ones.  The big, greyish frame is going to be a chalkboard after I finish the distressing and glazing.  I can't wait to see how it turns out.  The frame is really beautiful.

Maybe tomorrow the sun will shine for a couple hours.  I have some vintage glassware and pottery that I want to photograph so that I can put it on Etsy.



  1. WOW I love your idea's .. Please could you tell me what paint you used on the candle sconce's , because I would love to give this a try on mine !!! Your idea's make these look so French in style .. Many kind regard's for your post here

    1. Thank you for your comment. I actually used Valspar Satin paint from Lowes. Then I sealed it with Krylon Crystal Clear Satin Finish. The sealer comes in a spray can. Recently, I've painted some other sconces with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, then sealed them Annie Sloan Clear Wax. In between the paint and wax, I sanded them so that they would have a distressed look. I don't think that I have any pix of these on my blog, but will try to put them up soon. If you have any other questions, please feel free to ask. Again, thanks!!

  2. Just saw this site... I laughed out loud about the obligatory 60's Syroco mirror, shelf sconce set. Yep. We had them! Probably was with S&H Green Stamps too, as Mumma and Dad were obsessed with them - we were NOT middle class. We were blue-collar, but definitely determined to claw our way out of the mire. I think it was one of my Mumma's first indications that they could do so.

    Thanks for showing your work. I don't have the shelf/mirror/sconces, but I do have her cup shelf, which is surprisingly like the one you show. It has gathered the grime of the years, and while some folks call it 'patina'. I am still blue collar enough to call it dirt. So I cleaned it. Now I need to refinish it.

    Thanks for the memories!

    Cap'n Jan

    1. I was so surprised to see a comment on this's from 2013!! I painted so many pieces of the Syroco. My mother and friends started picking it up for me every time they would see a piece at a yardsale. About a year after I posted this, I discovered Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (kind of expensive, but good stuff). It covered the Syroco beautifully, then I would sand some of it off, giving it a distressed look, then applied the Annie Sloan Wax for a nice smooth, professional-looking finish. And....I don't think we were middle-class mom and dad just liked to say we were. LOL. Thanks so much for commenting!!

  3. I have a question for you or anyone who has felt with Syroco mirrors, I have one I picked up at the thrift store. It's looks like it's been painted quite a few times,I see maybe 5 different color drips on the back. Is there a way of safely removing the paint to start clean again? It looks like whoever painted it last didn't do a great job, there is hair and bubbles in the paint.

  4. Hi, I just bought a syrocco federalist concave mirror and it came in pristine condition. While I was cleaning the glass with paper towel sprayed with windex, I glazed over the finish. Now teh

    he spots where I touched the brass finish are turning dark. Is there some rule to never use windex on brass finish? Because this has happened to me before. Can I use a brass polish? Thanks, Bonnie