I had a picture in my mind of what this piece might look like when finished but if you haven't done it before, you don't know if you will achieve exactly what you are trying for. I feel like I got it on this one. I wanted to end up with a finish that has a smooth, worn, warm look. This is very hard to achieve without years of actual use. Milk paint helps but it must be sealed with the right stuff and applied in the right way. Usually , I am very happy to paint a piece but I was a bit worried about this one. It looked great before painting and the cherry matched nicely so I thought that maybe it would look better without paint. Well, I am very happy to say that the paint only made it better. It really brings out the details like the thumbnail edge on the top and beading around the drawers and end panels. Many would say- "Why use nice cherry if you are going to paint it?" Well, this is why. There is no way to achieve the warmth that this piece has without the cherry coming through. The client asked for the piece to be very "worn" looking. This is why you see areas where the cherry is very visible. I am very glad that they did. It makes me want to run my hand over the edges. If I had the time and space in my house, I would build this piece for myself.
I still need to put one more coat of finish on the top and then a coat of paste wax on the whole thing, but it is already looking great in my opinion.
I will post formal shots when it is all done.
Thanks for looking,