how to paint vintage furniture
Thu 3rd, May, 2012
Good evening ladies,let’s talk about how to paint vintage furniture shall we
Logging in here this evening after a good day, but in terms of bloggie problems, a not so good day, thank goodness for that little lady on the side in my kitchen and meal plans, she keeps everything ticking along nicely for sure…
Today, between a ride into the City on the ferry for lunch I have been foofing with the vintage ladder that we recently found on a walk to the coffee shop…
Here’s what it looked like before, it definitely needed a paint makeover – there were some great suggestions for this in the comments, you can have a read through them here, or leave me some more ideas here, I am all ears
when I blogged it before I had thoughts about painting it all white, but rather than regret doing that, I decided to go in stages…
Sometimes when you are tackling something like this that is a good idea, I know that from experience – and if you are lucky to find a vintage piece with real shabby peely paint that has come from time and wear rather than been made to look ‘weathered’, then treat it carefully
how to paint vintage furniture
First thing I do is clean it up…
There are a few ways of doing this, firstly you can use a stiff brush like this one to get rid of really mucky debris, dust and or dirt…
If, however, it is not too bad and you are not precious, you can use the brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner, also known as Hoover, to go over the whole piece
(I actually do both but it’s probs not necessary to do both steps….brush off to get rid of the main stuff and then go over with the vacuum for extra dirt ridding suction)
Next step is to clean.
The way I do it is good old fashioned soap and water, I have seen all kinds of fancy cleaners out there, but really this is a no-brainer. An old rag, soap, water and elbow grease is all you need.
Next I always disinfect and always with Dettol. I love me some Dettol, it’ has been part of me for my whole life, I clean my floors with it, I dab it on various parts of my body, I add it to my bath, I douse young children in it before I tie them to trees and I anoint any found or inherited vintage furniture that will be soon coastal and all beachy style with it before it is allowed to stay.
I am sure that any real furniture restorers are guffawing into their Limoncellos right now. It works for me.
Next up then we have the painting stage…
I buy lots of packs of budget paint brushes…ones that come in sets like this…I have dabbled with various different prices, styles etc and if I was doing this every single dayof my life for my job, I might have a different opinion on the quality of one’s paintbrushes, however I am not a professional for me, a job lot of these always in the garage are great when you randomly decide to have a painting session, no hunting for paintbrushes and finding that actually they don’t move ‘cos you forgot to clean them up
Next I use primer. It’s rare that I don’t use this step, this too I have learnt in my vintage furniture painting journey – I use and love Zinsser (purrlease I am not being sponsored to say that, I ask you!) ….if you have been with me for a while you will know I love this stuff and I don’t get sent it for free, G’day Zinsser, over here in the corner is a girl from the beaches blogger, she likes painting things white and she loves your product, fancy sending her some?
…it’s covered all sorts of things I have painted including a very reddish varnish that I thought would bleed through this, it didn’t
You don’t need to use this brand though, especially if you are on a budget, and believe me I have been there when spending nearly a hundred dollars on a tin of primer was not a light purchase. But even if you are in that budget zone, I still highly recommend it, you won’t waste your money. It does what it says on the can. End of story.
Next up we paint (oh and the primer doesn’t take long at all to dry, well at least not in Sydney)
A few options are here that I use
1. emulsion or water-based paint for a lovely chalky matte finish
2. water-based enamel for a semi- glossy finish
3. oil-based enamel for super lovely deep glossy finish
I move between all three of these depending on mood and time of day…to be honest, don’t choose number 1 if you have kids, dogs and males, because really, it marks quite a bit, I can cope with that, but from my inbox I know that many cannot…
If you want it to be easy to clean, with a nice finish but can’t be bothered with the hassle of oil-based enamel go for number 2…..this stuff has been around a while now, but is relatively new…it gives most of the loveliness of oil-based enamel with one HUGE difference…easy clean up! It’s worth it.
Finally if you want a lovely, glossy but deep finish you can’t beat oil-based enamel and if you are re-finishing, painting, upcycling something like this piece it probably isn’t needed but something like a front door….just do it.
So for this I stood in the garage for a while peering into the paint cupboard, hoping for dear life that a possum or snake would not poke its head out at me, I have no evidence that either is in there, but you know I am, after all, a pommie.
In the end I went for this water based enamel because it’s too easy and this one is mixed with a bit if grey in it and I didn’t want anything warm or creamy to the white…I wanted cool white if I was going to keep the pink…
And that is it…slap on that white paint and hope for the best
and turn a side of the road, salvaged piece to something prettier, at the same time, saving it from landfill and then spend too much time wondering where it is going to go for some beach decor and a coastal feel…
As you can see this isn’t finished, (I am doing it a different order plus there is still the rope that keeps it open to replace)… I have yet to find any ‘rope’ that I like, I want the rope to be nautical duh… I am sure you know what I mean, yeah? The Bunnings Man however did not.
Mrs Beach Cottage : G’day is this the only rope you stock?
Mr Bunnings Man : Yes, love, (he was from Yorkshire I believe) – that’s quite a bit of choice you have there, what sort of rope were you after, what does it need to do?
Mrs Beach Cottage : Errrm well it doesn’t need to do much, I mean we aren’t talking strength here, but it needs to be sorta beachy and nautical looking.
Mr Bunnings Man : scratching chin hmmm, first time I have been asked for that actually, what exactly would beachy rope look like?
Mrs Beach Cottage : well, you know sorta rustic and nautical, kinda jute and twisted and a bit country and maybe a bit faded and like chunky?
Mr Bunnings Man : Love, that’s a lot of requirements for a piece of rope! wink
Mrs Beach Cottage : Yes it happens quite a lot in my life…a bit high maintenance?
Mr Bunnings Man : Well I have heard it all in my time love, I have worked in hardware all my life and I have never been asked for beachy nautical coastal style…rope.
Mrs Beach Cottage : Well I am pleased you learnt something today. smile
And that is where I am with the rope.
But, wait there’s more.
What do we think of the pink? Please bear in mind that out on the deck today the light was a bit odd and I couldn’t be bothered with the manual settings so these pictures are a bit weird and I am working on my son’s monitor because my computer has a virus and the MAC is having problems with the camera………….ahhhhhhhhhhhhh, so really what I am trying to say is that the pink is foofy pink but I am trying to convince myself it looks just like that beautiful pink you see on the inside of shells, KWIM? ….but thinking I will sand the pink right down a bit more and give the white another coat (I didn’t do this because I wanted to keep the rustic feel to it, but now thinking that will make it more, you know, white ;-)
oh god, I am starting to ramble, that’s what happens when I blog in the evenings
…plus as you can see its still looking quite grubby, I was skipped one of the cleaning stages so I could get the paint on the steps before I left…I will be doing a re-run today – I couldn’t exactly turn up for lunch in my painting clothes now could I, not at Fashion Week with the Styling Queen of Australia ;-)
So, see you next time, still got lots to show and tell you…doesn’t help when you get techie problems in blogland as I have had over the last few days…hello server going down…
Later Beach Cottage Ladies
the one, the only
Mrs Beach Cottage
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