Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Details pt 2: Planning How to Paint Your Piece

The first part of this Details series was about cleaning and prepping your furniture, what I believe to be the most important step.  Read how to prep your piece here.
The second part of my Details series is about planning your furniture's look.
There are many things to consider when you paint furniture.  Let's face it, it's painted furniture.  You lose some durability when you do that.  Painted furniture scratches and ages.  We will address that later as well.  So you need to consider where you will be using your piece.  A high traffic area?  Low traffic?  Will you be wiping it down constantly?  Or just lightly dusting it?  Whenever I do my own furniture I have to prepare each piece just as if it were going to war!  I have a 20 year old tomboy, and 11 year old grom with super energetic powers.  A husband who constantly drags surfboards and bikes in and out of the house, 2 cats, a hermit crab, a guinea pig and a 100lb chocolate lab.  My furniture has to be able to be lived on and that does require some planning!

Latex paint and primer are to be considered for high traffic areas, and for furniture that you do not want any distressing.  So for the smooth modern sleek look, consider latex and primer and a spray gun.
For the chic distressed look, consider the furniture paints that are easy to distress.  I prefer Coastal Colors Beach Chic paints.  There are 30 colors that ALL match together.  The paint is easy to distress and most colors will coat in one coat.  No sanding is required for bonding and the best part is Coastal Colors also has a varnish that creates a very durable surface that will not scratch.  There are also other paints you can use and waxes, and you can make your own "chalk" paint. 
You also need to consider if you want a distressed look or a chippy look.  Distressing can be achieved through sanding or wet towels, Chippy looks require another method that will be in my "finishes" post.  But the prep can be different and you will need different materials accordingly.
If you choose to distress you will also need to decide how many colors you want to show through in your distressing.  That is how many coats you will have to apply.  We will talk these details later as well.

Even with our Detailed planning, you will still change your mind, maybe even several times. 
 And this is ok.  Sometimes you just need to "listen" to your piece.  Remember that some of the greatest art comes from mistakes!

Make sure you watch for Details: Part 3 - Painting Your Piece!