If you’re thinking of having a tidy up and clear out, don’t get rid of your old furniture – recycle and restore it instead! Restoring your old, outdated furniture is a great way to give something a new lease of life; a chest of draws for example! A vintage looking finish is something that will never go out of style, and instantly give your furniture a chic, rustic feel. If this sounds like something you’d like to do, read on for 5 easy steps:
Step 1 – Prep Your Furniture
When you’ve got your furniture ready, you’ll need to prep the surface so it’s ready for painting. Remove all of the hinges and any other metal work on the furniture so you can get ready to strip it. Sandpaper is best for stripping away varnish – you’ll just need to be prepared to put in some elbow grease! There are other ways to strip varnish, but whatever you do you’ll want to make sure you work in a ventilated area and wear protective clothing. When you’re finished, wipe down with warm water and leave to dry.
Step 2 – Paint or Prime
You’ll need to decide whether you want to use a primer depending on the condition of your wood. If you don’t want to use a primer, you can always use two coats of white for a blank canvas. Make sure the paints you choose are oil based or matte, as other paint probably won’t hold or last as long! You want to apply in thin, even coats, and always go in the direction of the wood grain. Every layer should be dry before you move on to the next one. Eggshell white/grey looks really ‘vintage’ when trying to emulate the look.
Step 3 – Distress
Once you’ve left your furniture to dry for at least 24 hours, you can begin to distress it if you choose. You might like the furniture the way it looks now, which is fine too.
There are many ways you can go about aging your furniture; for a light distressed look just concentrate on raised areas that would distress naturally over time. Use 180 grit sandpaper, and sand in one direction over and over again until you reach the desired look.
Step 4 – Beat the Furniture
You don’t have to do this either, as your furniture may already be well used. However, if you’d like to create an even more distressed, worn feel; use the end of a metal chain or tool to hit the furniture and bruise it. Just be careful – you don’t want to cause any irreparable damage!
Step 5 – Varnish
This step is also optional, and if you’re already happy with your furniture you can leave it. However, you can use a light coat of varnish or beeswax to protect the wood if you want to – just use it sparingly. Now all that’s left to do is attach the metal handles and you’re done!
See? Just about anybody can create their own vintage finish! Although, if this still sounds like too much hard work for you, you could always go to a retailer like www.theotherduckling.co.uk where you can find plenty of vintage looking goods. Have fun!
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