Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Pins 54, 55, & 56

Original pin:
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Spray painting furniture how-to


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Overview of distressing painted furniture


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Whoa. A triple pin project! A few months back I scored some new furniture for the boys future room (when I determine they are old enough to bunk together--which I hope is sooner rather than later). This furniture came from a friend who offered me a deal I couldn't refuse! It was truly a bargain. The furniture was in good condition structurally, it had just had a little love from the previous little boy so it needed a little tlc.

 My little one's dresser is literally falling apart. I can no longer put the drawers back together on a weekly basis AND keep my sanity. I decided it was time to start moving in the new furniture, beginning with the dresser. I read a lot of blogs about refinishing furniture. It was probably a little too much because my plan got a little muddy. The pins I shared here are the sites I actually used techniques from. The first pin inspired me to prime with spray paint rather than brush on primer. I quickly hand-sanded all the parts first and then put on a sturdy layer of Kilz spray primer. Then I started painting. After two coats, I decided I needed a third. After three coats, I decided I needed a fourth. I love deep, rich colors which always require extra paint. Such a chore. I have painted two rooms red (requiring three coats) and one room deep brown (requiring four coats) and I still go for these colors. I finally achieved the color and coverage I wanted.

Ready to distress
 I'm not going to lie to you. This is the point I got really nervous about the distressing part and nearly backed out. All this time and work to get the perfect color and now I was just going to bang it up? Something didn't feel right about this. What if I messed up the messing up part? But I am dedicated to the pin so I jumped right it before I could over think it any longer. (The second pin, above)
The stressed out drawers.
Now onto (what I thought was going to be) the final step. Providing a protective coat, per pin three above. I thought I was going to be really smart here and apply a sealing finish with a spray paint sealant specifically indicated for indoor furniture. I was horrified.

This spray sealer did this to my perfect paint job. It was powdery and gritty, and I was just so disappointed. When I finally pulled myself up by my bootstraps and went to the hardware store armed with these pictures, the paint expert took one look and said, "You spray painted over a water based paint? Can't do that. All spray paint is oil-based." Dang. Luckily he had a solution for me. I had to sand it down, again, and paint it, again, and seal it, again--but with a water-based sealant this time. And so I did. Sanding the whole piece, I actually was glad this had happened. I saw the effect of sanding the entire surface, not just the edges as I had done originally, and I really liked how it looked. Sanding made me brave. After the fifth coat of paint, I sanded much more aggressively than I had the first time and I was much, much more pleased with the results. Ready to seal, again. As soon as I started, though, I noticed that the sealant was smoothing out the texture that the sanding had provided.

See the difference between the top and the bottom color and texture, this is after the sealant had dried.
 I was not going to sand or paint this thing again. So I just stopped. Nope, no sealant. What is the worst thing that can happen? The paint might scratch off. Great! I've already spent a lot of time doing that intentionally. So I put the knobs on the drawers, put the drawers back in, sanded off the three or four slats of sealant, and called this turkey done.

One other non-pin related snag I had with this project--I intended to replace the knobs. However, after taking them off I found they are some sort of fancy custom knob that would require me to repair the current holes and drill new ones. At that realization, I decided these knobs would work fine.

Total cost: $30 because I bought way too much paint and two kinds of sealant. Not including the price of the dresser. It was a steal and part of a set.

Total time: I feel like I've been working on this for absolutely months, but probably more like 3 weeks, off and on. I needed recovery time in between defeats.

Final verdict: I love the way it turned out. I have two more pieces of the set I am going to do in this color because I have so much extra paint. However, I will be buying an electric sander before I start the next piece.

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