When refinishing furniture with a painted, glazed, and distressed look, your paintbrush is your most important tool. To make it last the entire project, the paint on it must be kept from drying out between coats.
The most effective way I’ve found to do this is to wrap it in a plastic shopping bag. Whether between coats or when I must step away from applying paint for more than a few minutes, I wrap the brush in the plastic shopping bag, twist it around the base, and then lie it flat and ready to go for the next time I apply paint on a piece.
And before wrapping the brush up in the plastic bag, I typically run a little bit of water over the wet end of the brush as an added precaution to keep any of the paint on the brush from drying. I’ve even stored brushed up to a week this way, and found them ready to go when needed again.
Using this approach has also extended the life of my brushes over multiple projects and several years.
When I first discovered how paint, glaze and distressing can create a whole new look for weary, old furniture, I was amazed. Cringe-worthy pieces all of a sudden took on a whole new life, with one-of-a-kind character that worked off the best of their original vintage design.
The outside the box approach of color provides fantastic options for pieces destined for the thrift store, college dorm or nearby curb. Weary old original finish became the palette upon which paint and glaze bring the character of a piece to life.
One of my favorite things to do with a piece that’s been painted, glazed and distressed is to reuse the original hardware. The aged look of original knobs and pulls provides a great throw back to the original design, while adding character to the new look.
And when the original pulls don’t have the right color for the refinished piece, my second favorite things to do is spray paint the hardware to fit the look of the new piece.
Black is a favorite spray paint color for pulls and knobs on Turquoise, Sea Blue and Red. Dark bronze is my favorite for Antiqued White.
With paint, glaze and distressing, the sky is the limit with old furniture that’s past it’s prime. Cringe-worthy and destined for the curb, endless possibilities abound when a little outside-the-box imagination is applied to dated and dreary pieces.
Our website is dedicated to inspiring how creativity can come to life with your next DIY project. Our blog and the many collections in our portfolio showcase our all favorite pieces transformed by paint, glaze and distressing.
Half the fun of refinishing vintage furniture is finding dated pieces with charming character. This summer, I’ve found several pieces that fit that bill, except that they have a cringe-worthy top surface made of Formica.
Formica is a plastic laminate, and back in the day, pieces with this top surface were sought after for their high durability. 40 years later, many of these furniture pieces are still holding up well! It’s heat and water resistant, and in it’s own right a great product. Nonetheless, it just seems out of place on nice wood furniture with it’s faux wood design.
Enterpaint, glaze, and distressing! Formica furniture can be refinished just like pieces with real wood top surfaces. The key is to use a high quality primer that will adhere well to the laminate surface.
My go-to product of choice is spray Zinsser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Primer. Available at Lowe’s, this product provides outstanding coverage and it has fantastic adhesion.
Before priming, I prepare the Formica surface with 60 grit sand paper. I use this rougher grade to rough up the glossy surface, insuring strong adhesion for the long haul. The coats of primer and paint will fill scratch marks from the sandpaper.
I apply the spray primer to the entire piece since I’ll be applying latex enamel, which needs a primer coat underneath. I also apply the primer so that the surfaces are entirely covered in white, which insures a solid coat.
One can will cover an end table, while two will cover a dresser. Once applied, the primer will dry and be ready for painting within 30-60 minutes. Before painting, I go back over the entire piece gently with a fine grade sanding sponge to remove primer dust buildup. I then clean off the dust with a shop vac and a quick wipe down with a moist rag.
A couple of days ago, I saw this display at Home Depot announcing some BIG NEWS. Ralph Lauren Faux Technique Glaze is back, as Home Depot is again carrying the Ralph Lauren line of paints!
When I first experimented with Ralph Lauren Glaze 3 years ago, Home Depot had all the products on clearance as they were discontinuing the line. I purchased as lot of glaze at a great price, but was sad that it would only be found at specialty paint stores.
In my DIY eBook “Facelift Your Furniture”, I explain in detail how to use Ralph Lauren Glaze on furniture. It is the product that makes the character of painted furniture come to life. It highlights ornate detail and can reveal the wear and tear on furniture in a very charming manner.
I’m thrilled it’s back, and am very excited for everyone who has purchased “Facelift Your Furniture”. Purchasing this great product has become much easier for many!
UPDATE: The Tobacco, Tea Stained, and Black Truffles tints I recommend in my eBook are not in Home Depot’s paint department computers for Ralph Lauren glaze. I am not sure why this is the case, but a helpful paint rep sent me the following original formulas for Tobacco and Tea Stained tints. For Black Truffles, simply ask for it to be tinted with as much black as possible (I don’t have a formula for Black Truffles, but that’s worked for me with numerous purchases). Take these numbers with you, and your Home Depot paint department should be able to mix them up for you in quart or gallon sized cans of glaze.
This website is in no way affiliated with Home Depot or Ralph Laurne. The opinions stated here are my own.