The shabby chic look is incredibly popular right now. People everywhere are ditching their IKEA furniture and snapping up old bits of antique furniture, purely so they embark on a furniture restoration project. There is no doubt that distressed furniture is a really cool look, but if you don’t know the difference between milk paint vs chalk paint, or you are not sure which paint to buy from www.realmilkpaint.com, where do you begin?
Choose a Piece of Furniture
The shabby chic look is ideal for any piece of furniture, with the exception of modern veneer items. Basically, as long as the piece is solid wood, you are ready to go. So take a look up in your attic and see what you can find, or start hunting through garage sales or junk shops. One man’s unwanted furniture is another man’s shabby chic masterpiece!
Prepare the Surface
Once you have found your perfect piece of furniture, you need to prepare the surface. The item needs to be clean, so wash it thoroughly with some soapy water and leave it to dry naturally. If there are any holes or cracks, fill them, and if the item has metal hinges or handles, remove them for now.
Pre-painted or varnished pieces of furniture need to be sanded down. You don’t have to go too far overboard, as a bit of paint or varnish will give you a nice distressed look with zero effort on your part, but it is a good idea to apply sandpaper to the surface so the paint has something to adhere to.
What Paint is Best?
There are lots of boutique paints in the stores. Chalk paint comes ready mixed in a can. It doesn’t need a primer as it grips well to non-porous surfaces. Milk paint comes in powder form, so you mix only what you need. Milk paint doesn’t grip well to non-porous surfaces, so you may need to add a bonding agent to the mix. Both paint finishes will benefit from a final topcoat of wax or oil. Both paints produce lovely finishes and both are easy to work with. Ultimately, you should try both and see which one you prefer, as it is a personal choice.
To create the shabby chic look, you need to add some resistance to the surface of the item, as this prevents the paint adhering. You can do this with oil or wax. Use a wax candle to rub over any areas where you want the base color to show through.
Apply the Paint
Apply a base coat of paint and follow this up with a second coat. If you want a two-tone look, use a darker color as your base coat.
Distress the Surface
To distress the surface, use some fine sandpaper to rub away the top coat of paint. You can also mark the surface using sharp tools and fill in the cracks and holes with tinted wax.
Once your restoration project is complete, invite family and friends over to admire your handiwork!