Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Painting Furniture

The #1 e-mail inquiry I get is from people wanting to know the specifics about how I paint furniture.  I tend to giggle at this because I certainly don’t consider myself an expert.  I’ve been lucky that (knock on wood) I haven’t had any disasters yet.  If that makes me “in the know”, then so be it.

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#1.  Clean it!

I make sure that I use a cleaner to get all the grit and grime off any piece of furniture that I paint.  TSP works best for me, and it can be found at Lowes, Home Depot, etc.  You’ll be amazed at how much sickness you’ll get off the furniture by using this.

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#2.  Prime it!

A lot of people ask me about primer, but I don’t have a set kind that I use.  AND I don’t necessarily use a primer on everything (see below).  The primer below is what I use if I don’t want to do a lot of sanding.  Speak with your paint guy.  What?  You don’t have a paint guy?  Get one!

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#3.  Choose great paint!

My love.  My passion.  My life’s desire.  Benjamin Moore Metal and Wood paint.  BM doesn’t pay me for this promotion, but they should.  You hearin’ me, Ben?  It’s that good.  Beautiful coverage, smooth finish, and gorgeous look.  I’m sure everyone has “their paint choice”, and this is most definitely mine.

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#4.  TOOLS!

A lot of people wonder about the paint brush.  I ONLY use a roller on furniture.  I use little foam brushes to get into crevices and trim work, but I NEVER use a brush on the flat pieces.  I truly believe this is the difference between a piece looking nice or spectacular.  Ideally, I would have a paint gun, but I don’t.  Instead, I have a $2.o0 foam roller from Wal Mart.

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IMG_5345_thumb[11] I might continue to get some questions about when to sand, how much to sand, or words that rhyme with sand.  However, I don’t have a definitive answer for you.  I generally sand enough to rough up the surface.

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I sanded the heck out of these barstools, and it was completely unnecessary.  Lesson learned.

IMG_6304[14] And finally, I don’t seal my pieces with anything.  I pay a little more for my paint than other brands, and that’s one of the many reasons why.  It doesn’t need to be sealed after painting it.  Perhaps that’s wrong, but keep in mind I’m not the expert here.  I just play one on this blog.

Don’t forget to enter for the Timeless Treasures giveaway.  The winner will be announced tomorrow!

71 comments:

Keana C. said...

Can you come to Washington and paint my furniture please? =)

**** April **** said...

I love your honesty... and your humor! You cracked me up with "... I just play one on this blog." I think you do what works for you and if someone wants to give it a go -- hey... they should! :) I appreciate what you do. It's pure awesomeness! One of these days I'll take the time to tackle somethign like it. Until then, I have you to live vicariously through! :)

Stephen and Tiffany Seston said...

I used your advice (you've posted some before right?!?) and it worked perfectly on a desk I redid that I was not willing to sand because it would have taken me the rest of my life...anyway, all of the products you suggested are Perfect! Thank you!

♥Amber Filkins♥ said...

I definitely think I need to take my paint up a notch. I tend to buy cheapy paint. E.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g you paint looks fabulous!!

♥ Amber

Andrea said...

I got that Benjamin Moore paint after you recommended it and I wanted to THANK YOU! It truly is wonderful paint that went on super easy--so very much worth the $65 price!

Stacey @ The Blessed Nest said...

Thanks, this is awesome! I'm writing down that paint recommendation for sure!! Hoping to find a lovely sideboard to re-do for the dining room at our local flea market this weekend :)!
Blessings,
Stacey

Pam @ Design Fanatic said...

Great post. Thanks for posting your experience with painting. When you paint a table top with the Benjamin Moore paint, how long do you let it dry before putting something on it? Most latex paints tend to be perpetually sticky on table tops. Do you have this problem with the paint you use?

Sarah Sarniak said...

Thanks for sharing your tips. I'll have to give the TSP and the Benjamin Moore paint a try.

~ Sarah @ http://www.queenofdiy.com

Kansas Amy said...

Great advice. And now I need to go buy me some Benjamin Moore! ;)

The Mac Fam said...

Have you painted any pieces that have a laminate top? I have a dresser that I want to redo but I'm not sure how the paint will stick to the laminate? Any help will be greatly appreciated :) Thanks!

Magic Brush said...

I am singing right now! Finally.... another Metal and Wood lover! I mention it all the time! Benny Moore should pay me also!!!!!!! We are using it today on furniture piece mixed to the SW color "Sawdust"..... it's a gem!

The Reynolds Family said...

I found your blog on my friends, and I love everything you do! Thanks so much for the tips, I am getting ready to tackle a hope chest for my little sister in law that is graduating high school. I am going to use your product recommendations... I know it will turn out great!!

Carrie said...

PERFECT timing.. I'm getting ready to paint my first thrift store treasures this weekend! THANKS!

Holly said...

I hesitate so much when it comes to painting furniture...but I have quite a few pieces that NEED it. This is great...simply put...good photos...who knows maybe I'll paint something this weekend. I will be following you too! So excited!
Holly
504 Main

Kristen said...

I would like a tutorial on how to paint a piece of furniture with helpful 7 and 5 year old boys and a 2 year old girl who doesn't understand no.

THEN I'll know how amazing you REALLY are. Because the thought of trying to make something look that pretty with my kids around me just about brings me to tears.

melissa * 320 Sycamore said...

Chris~Thank you for all these tips! I'm thinking the iron clad paint would be great for kitchen cabinets??

duchess said...

My motto is - whatever works.
Your process definitely works - thanks for the info.

Linda at Lime in the Coconut! said...

Good tips! That'll work. I have a credenza to paint!

Jennifer Juniper said...

I have that exact rug that is under your table :)

I agree with the sanding, I think the cleaning is what you usually need the most. Great job laying it all out for us!

Julia @ Hooked on Houses said...

What a helpful post! You made it sound so simple. Maybe one of these days I'll get up the courage to try it. Thanks! :)

Wendy said...

When I came across your blog some months ago I saved it mainly because of the painting tips. I have wanted to paint my master bedroom furniture but didn't know the best way to go about it until i saw how in your blog...thanks so much for sharing your tips...I followed all of them. Me and hubby are super happy with how our master is coming all the furnture painting is done. I will be posting pictures in my blog soon.

Tammy@InStitches said...

I'm a big fan of BM paint, next time I am going to try the wood and metal paint because your stuff looks so good !

1 Funky Woman said...

Thank you for all your tips. I've been thinking of painting my dining room table black and now after looking at some of your pieces and what you use, I am so inspired to do it, thanks!

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

I have a recently completed video I made of painting my bathroom cabinets. It was fun to see that you use foam rollers and brushes too.

Irene said...

All of your projects looks professionally done so I think you know what you are doing, well enough to be considered an expert.

Kristin @ My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia said...

Thanks Chris for all the wonderful tips! Your furniture looks like it was done by a pro!!
Take care-
Kristin

Jen Gallacher said...

Had to comment on your previous post--I don't have pierced ears either and sometimes I feel like I'm the only person the planet. LOL! Thanks for the great furniture painting tips!

Michelle Hoad said...

My brown eyes have just turned green with envy over your gorgeous side board. I covet it.

foxy said...

Hahahahaha.... guess I wasn't the only one then! You are an excellent resource - thanks for sharing all of your mad furniture painting/refinishing skillz with us! :)

Richella said...

Benjamin Moore paints are the best. I am so with you on that. And for heaven's sake, if I am going to put my precious time into painting something, I do not want to use bad paint. It's not worth the few dollars of savings.

Ben really should pay you!

emptynest4two said...

If I can get a piece to come out like your F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S dresser...I will do whatever you say! That thing is GORG!

Kelly A. said...

Thanks for sharing!! Just one more quick question--how many coats on black paint do you use??

kellygirl562@gmail.com

Angry Julie Monday said...

Great post. I love the step by step process. I'm highlighting you on my Spotlight Saturday this week with this post.

Cathie said...

I was just the other day telling my husband that I wanted to paint our purchased-dirt-cheap-on-Craigslist dining room furniture just like your buffet. It is GORGEOUS! I just have to save up for the good paint! I'm thinking about frosting the glass in the hutch. Just need time and money.

Ruth said...

These pieces look spectacular. Painting my dining table and chairs is on my definitely must do list this spring. I can't wait and I'll definitely be looking to get some of that Benjamin Moore paint.

Ruth

Lisa said...

Hi Chris-
I work at Benjamin Moore and we liked your post so much that we had to share it with all of our fans on Facebook. Perhaps they will become your fans, too. :)

Check it out at:
http://www.facebook.com/benjaminmoorepaints

Tausha said...

Great info friend! I think that i would consider you an expert. No bad painting problems to tell about it? I am jealous-I have had more than a few-mostly because I am impatient. Shocker right? I didn't know that about benjamin moore-thanks for the tip!!

ColorWhisperer said...

Chris, you are adorable. Thank you! Plus, your work is lovely! :)
Keep painting!

Anonymous said...

The Benjamin Moore product used here is excellent for these projects. It is one of my favorite Ben Moore products to sell.

Carol said...

Okay, am I the only one who laughs a little on the inside when I read "BM paint"?

Echoing what everyone else here has said, thank you so much for demystifying the paint process - it's incredible how paint can completely change things.

And nice job getting the 'BM' (laughing myself silly) people to recognize you.

Carol

kermiefrg said...

Great tips! I agree, the roller works much better than a paintbrush and the end result is so much cleaner.

Popcorn Served Daily said...

Of course, without you, I wouldn't have even attempted to paint my hutch white. Thanks for sharing your tips.

Lisa

Sarah @ Thrifty Decor Chick said...

That black buffet is like butta, seriously. I still can't get over it. I may have to try this magic paint you speak of. It's all FANTASTIC!!

Pendant lighting said...

You are so talented!

Nancy Alwin said...

Like Buttar indeed! HA! I love it, you guys are making all the BenMoore (not BM) reps drool!
All their paint products are top notch, try em and see.
As a BenMoore professional color specialist I have also become a total paint NERD! Aura and Natura interior paints are fantastic and GREEN, not just the color either!
Feel free to visit my blog; www.ArtZenFlowers.wordpress.com for more nerdishness...

Miss Obara said...

Your pieces turn out great every time. I like the look...now i know your secret!

truthteller2222 said...

The finish is beautiful on that black piece. It looks just glossy enough. Did you sand that one? How many coats of paint? Any advice about technique? Your blog is great!

pam said...

Thanks for sharing your great tips!

harmony said...

I NEED those nickel pulls. Where did you get them? I too am a fellow BM convert. I've never tried the metal/wood paint. Can't wait. I love a foam roller.

Chevy_Chick95 said...

Thank you for a step by step guide. I'm terrified to paint my rolling kitchen island! Maybe I can try it now :)

Melanie said...

That black looks beautiful and so sleek! Thanks for all the tips.

Miss Mustard Seed said...

Wow! You've been a busy girl. Everything looks great and I love the barstools.

Different Things said...

I absolutely love the cabinet. The black is perfect. I want!!!! Great job on all your projects.

Jamie said...

Chris,
Just found you...Can't remember how! Anyway, GREAT paint tips.
I have painted a lot, but I must say, I think you are a bit smarter than I! You've figured some things out that have always annoyed me.
I will definitely try your paint recommendation. Everything looks beautiful!
Jamie

Pam Faulkner, CIR, IRIS said...

Love how color can give new life to otherwise "dated" furniture. In my interior redesign business I often repurpose furnishings and advise clients to update their decor on a budget by recycling this way. I'm going to refer them to your blog so they can see and read for themselves what you have done. Wonderfully well written!

Anonymous said...

I work at Benjamin moore and found out that the low lustre metal & wood latex has been gone off the market for years now, so what kind of finish do you use now?

Chris said...

Hi Anon,

Not sure what to tell you. I purchased the quart in that picture just a couple of months ago. Hmmm... :)

Pete said...

How do you get the foam roller pattern out of the finish coat? I hate the little "holes" that come with a rolled on finish. A little tip - the next time you paint with a dark paint color, have your primer tinted gray. Makes painting so much easier. Best!

Sunshine of Seven said...

Your dresser is GORGEOUS!! And thanks for the tips!

Jerri-Lea said...

Hi, hope the year end procedures at school are going well. Did you ever paint the chairs and table to match the top piece on this post? I have the same set and really want to paint it all but wondering how the table held up? I have a 2 year old that would be testing the durability of the paint job :)

paperballet said...

i love the black. it's SO creamy and rich. you done good, girl!

David James said...

Thanx for sharing your tips..
Double Bathroom Vanities

Anonymous said...

I just bought the paint in June 10. I am hard at work painting. :)

Sixty-Fifth Avenue said...

Love the black buffet!
I use the same paint for my furniture because someone told me it would work good in my sprayer. I love it too. Have you tried not priming and just using the paint alone? I have just sanded and painted and so far so good.

Bosch Family said...

I want to thank you for posting this! I was able to print off the whole entry and take it to Lowes to find everything that we needed to refinish this: http://chrisandmeloniebosch.blogspot.com/2010/10/china-cabinet-redo.html Your blog is an absolute inspiration!!

Angela said...

Good paint tips, especially the one about your choice in paint. I new to your blog and totally needed these tips a few weeks ago. I love that you also mentioned how dirty used furniture can be at times because I totally agree.

ArtZenFlowers Color and Design said...

Chris, I love you for posting this non expert expert blog! I am getting up steam to attack a whole bedroom suite that is still quietly speaking the language of 1973 "Far Out Man!" But in a traditional, "we came with a matching water bed dude!" kinda way and this is precisely the info I required! Mahalo! Gracias! and Thanks a whole bunch! Nancy

Kitchen said...

When I came across your weblog some months ago I saved it chiefly because of the painting tips. I have desired to paint my master bedroom furniture but didn't know the best way to go about it until i saw how in your weblog.thanks a lot for sharing your tips.I followed all of them.

Fitted kitchen said...

I love everything you do! Thanks a lot for the tips, I am preparing to tackle a hope chest for my tiny sister in law that is graduating high school. I am going to make use of your product recommendations.

Punk N Pie Couture said...

This project turned out wonderful. I have been wanting to paint my hutch and dining room table black for some time. DH says NO! Of course I had to google to find someone who did the same and your hutch looks great! Hopefully this will convince him.

Barbara said...

do you have any tips on painted already crackled furniture. My daughter's bedroom set is gorgeous, but being a 14 year old girl, we don't exactly share the same taste in home decor. she wants to redo her bedroom, beginning with painting her furniture black. it is currently an ivory crackle finish...and we would love it to be have a nice smooth finish like the item you posted here. any suggestions on how to get rid of the crackle????

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