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The matt, chalky finish is perfect for upcycling vintage gems and can be applied directly onto most surfaces.
To demonstrate how simple the technique is, we’ve teamed up with Georgie Scott-Batey, owner of Chic-osity Newcastle, a business that specialises in all things vintage and furniture transformation. In this video, using an inexpensive piece of unpainted furniture as an example, Georgie shows you how it’s done!
Before you get started make sure the surface of your item you’re painting is nice and smooth, dry and free from any contaminants such as dust, oil or wax. Use a damp cloth over the surfaces that you are going to paint to pick up any dust and a towel to dry it off. Also, remember to always read the instructions on the back of the paint can before you start.
If you’re working with vintage furniture it is likely to have an old varnish or wax coating to protect it over the years but this is likely to react with new paint and ruin your smooth finish. To combat this use a fine grade sandpaper or sanding block to create a key (rough surface) as this will improve adhesion.
Before painting, remove any excess dust with the damp cloth and towel dry once more.
Give the paint a really good stir before application and then apply the paint in light coats with a brush or a roller depending on the item you’re painting.
For furniture with a lot of detail a good quality paint brush is recommended to ensure that you reach into any mouldings and cutouts.
Apply the paint evenly, for a smoother finish try to keep your brush strokes in the same direction. If you want a solid finish, you will probably need two or three coats, but for a finish that you want to distress and sand back you will need fewer. Leave four hours between coats to ensure the paint if fully dry.
If the paint begins to drip or become tacky, you’ve applied too much in one go. Not to worry though as once it’s dry lightly sand back the top layer of paint and begin that stage again.
Once your item is dry you can begin to spot sand some of the detail and places that would naturally wear, this will achieve a ‘distressed’ vintage feel. For this you can use sandpaper, a sanding block or a wire scourer.
For the best outcome start off on corners and edges and work from there. Remember to keep standing back from the item to ensure you are happy with the developing effect.
Once you are happy with the outcome it is time to apply Rust-Oleum Furniture Finishing Wax. This protects the paint finish and is really easy to apply. Just simply take an old rag or paint brush and work the wax into the paint work a little at a time. Leave this to dry for 10 minutes then buff the surface with a clean, dry cloth to remove any excess wax. From here this will then just take 15 minutes to dry fully. Add any finishing touches to your item and the look will be complete.
You might want to use two contrasting colours on your object — on the bookcase featured in the video we used Anthracite for the first two coats, followed by a Winter Grey top coat. We then lightly sanded the areas of the topcoat back with sand paper to reveal the lighter colour underneath.