The old gent who lived here previously left several LARGE & lovely pieces of furniture behind.
It was very kind of him to do so, but truth be told, he couldn’t have gotten these pieces out of here as he refused to hire movers.
He instead transporting all his belongings, including every rusty screw he ever touched & every piece of paper he ever read in his often broken down yellow van to Lake Tahoe ~ 11 hours away. At 82 this was a feat – accomplished over one year & eight months.
But hey, that is another story & maybe even a book. Did I mention he was a hoarder of Olympic proportions?
We’ll, get deeper into that saga & how I earned the virtue of patience over those many many month another day.
Today we are talking about painting furniture & the pieces I was lucky enough to receive with the purchase of our home. Specifically, what I plan to do to refurbish and freshen these pieces up.
Throughout the post are before/during pictures of these pieces. Feel free to ring in with your thoughts on painting furniture.
There are so many choices of paints & techniques for furniture painting that I wanted to get beneath the surface so to speak, before taking action. A primer on paint options ( excuse the pun ! )
We DIY’ers toss around Milk, Chalk and other paint terms, but do we really know the differences & what is best when? I wanted to really know before tackling these massive pieces.
Figured you might like to really know the differences between paints too, so here you have it:
A Guide to Paints for Painting Furniture:
Milk Paint ~
Milk paint is an organic water based paint. It is comprised of a mixture of lime, casein (the main protein in milk), clays and pigment. Milk paint comes in powder form & is mixed with water.
It gives a rich complex finish that improves over time. It bonds best to fresh wood or well sanded wood. The paint is thinner so several coats can be applied with no risk of chipping.
Milk paint is easy to clean up & can even be poured right down the kitchen drain.
Chalk Paint ~
Chalk Paint is really not a type of paint, but the name of the particular paint trademarked by Annie Sloan in 1990. There are other paints on the market with similar components, but none can call themselves “Chalk Paint” – that is Annie’s paint. Kinda like other facial tissues not being able to call themselves Kleenex.
Chalk Paint by Annie Sloan, or other similar types of paint, are water based, nontoxic, odor free with low VOCs. This paint renders an aged appearance & distresses easily.
Besides, the beautiful matt finish, a big real bonus to Chalk Paint is that it bonds to almost any surface with no need to sand or prime. Nice!
Latex Paint ~
Good old latex paint. Not fancy, but can yield pretty great results at low cost. Did you ever see the little side table I transformed with a rag & some leftover latex paint?
Oh have a look at the post. Here is a close up of the distressed look I achieved. It was so easy & cost nothing, but an hour or so of my time.
Latex paint is also water based. It comprises 75% of the paint sold in the US. The cost is low, the clean up easy, it adheres well and dries fast. In a word ~ reliable.
Oil Paint ~
Oil paint is pretty much a thing of the past and for good reason. It is solvent based, alkyds, petroleum distillates. Not good for the environment or you. It smells bad, is less durable than latex, prone to cracking and clean up is not easy.
In California, I might do state time if found with a gallon of oil based paint. And if they find my stash of pink incandescent light bulbs I might get life! No time for that…
So we can pretty much eliminate this one from my list of possibilities.
So there you have it ~ my paint primer for painting furniture.
The question still remains to paint or not to paint?
This one I am not painting.
Sanding was enough for me. I love the patina it took on when the red-ish stain was removed. Patina this good should not be painted in my opinion.
It needs a bit more sanding in spots and then maybe some hemp oil. Then done with that piece! I’ll show you the after once I get it there.
This Victorian secretary got a coat of white primer. Just primed, so ready for anything, but I believe it will stay white.
It will share the room with my 21 light vintage chandelier. There shouldn’t be competition for star of the room. The chandy will be it.
This piece, grand as it is, needs to play a supporting role. And I am loving it white!
The details really pop. Oops, I missed a spot!
Here is the one that calls out for a creative paint job. It is a massive German piece. A breakfront, an altar in a pinch?
This piece might take me all summer to paint once I decide – milk, chalk, latex – distressed or not… The possibilities are many.
Now that I know more about each type of paint I can make an informed decision.
What do you think about this piece?
Would you paint it? If so, got any good ideas? Love to hear your thoughts!
** Kelly **