Wondering how to upcycle your furniture with paint? Upcycling is an excellent way to breathe new life into perfectly good furniture that has lost its initial charm. Something as simple as a fresh coat of paint in a trendy color can completely change the look of an old table or a sofa!
If you think that it all sounds too good to be true, think again! If you do the proper research and take time to prepare everything you need, painting furniture is an incredibly easy and creative process that doesn’t require the same level of knowledge as garage door weather stripping. All you have to do is take a trip to the hardware store to gather the necessary supplies like paintbrushes or some masking tape and you will be ready to unleash your creativity.
Are you ready to learn more about how to upcycle furniture with paint? Our guide walks you through all the steps, from where to find great, used furniture to painting!
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Where to Get Used Furniture?
Online is a great place to start! make sure to check out groups like Facebook Marketplace or your local Craigslist – you can find real gems there, but you need to be fast to grab them!
For another option, many people leave the furniture they no longer want on their lawns, so whenever possible, take a stroll or a drive around your neighborhood. It’s a great way to find something nice for free.
Depending on your budget, you can also frequent your local thrift stores such as Goodwill and Salvation Army, or any flea markets. You might need to pay a little bit more for pieces made of quality materials, like that stunning weighted blanket you’ve had your eye on, but it should still be worth it.
What to Avoid?
To make sure that you don’t spend money or waste time on furniture that can turn out to be unsalvageable, it’s better to stick to a few general rules.
For instance, if the furniture you’re interested in isn’t structurally sound and you have no carpentry skills, skip on everything with missing legs, wobbly sides, or drawers that aren’t working smoothly.
If you notice any holes in old wooden furniture, it can be a sign that woodworm has done damage. When buying furniture covered in any kind of fabric, always make sure to check it thoroughly for bed bugs.
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How to Prepare Wooden Furniture for Paint
Once you have your piece, the next step is sanding. Start by lightly sanding the surface of the furniture to get rid of any scratches or small imperfections. For stubborn marks, use a hand sander that will provide you with a better grip. Then, brush off any dust with a tack cloth. Next, mask off any areas you don’t want to get paint on with painter’s tape.
If your wood hasn’t been previously stained or painted, use latex or an oil-based primer. If you have wood that’s stained, use a stain-blocking primer to avoid bleeding. Additionally, if you plan to paint the wood a light color, consider using white primer for better opacity.
Then, apply your paint of choice. For wooden furniture, it’s best to use a satin or semigloss finish in either a latex or an oil-based paint. Keep in mind that if you’re using oil-based paint, then your primer should also be oil-based. To be more efficient, paint large areas with a roller and do the details with a brush.
You can stick to neutral colors for a look that will match every interior, or make a statement using bold and trendy shades. Wait at least 24 hours before applying a furniture finishing wax or a coat of sealant for extra durability.
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How to Upcycle Upholstered Furniture with Paint
Are you bored with your old couch or an armchair that’s been sitting in your living room forever? If so, you can try painting it!
Latex paint should work well on the most smooth fabrics. To get the best effect for your money, get flat paint, as it’s more pigmented than any other kind and will leave you with a nice, matte finish. A gallon of paint should be enough to cover a standard three-seat sofa. To turn the latex paint into a fabric-friendly solution, you’ll also need about half a gallon of a fabric medium – a thick liquid that will increase its ability to bind to the fabric.
Start by mixing your paint. Use equal amounts of the paint and the medium. Work with a nylon or polyester brush and apply the mix evenly, using light coats. Don’t rub the paint in, but make sure to press the brush firmly to make it soak in instead of sitting on the surface of the fabric. Let one coat completely dry before applying another one. This can take up to a few hours and you should aim to apply at least four coats of paint or more if needed until you reach full coverage.
Thanks to using the fabric medium, there’s no need to apply any kind of sealer. The finished product will be a brand new-looking couch, that won’t be scratchy, crunchy, or hard to touch. If your painted sofa smells of paint for the first few days, don’t worry – keep the windows open and air the room out. The smell will go away on its own eventually.
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Upcycle Your Furniture with Paint – The Final Word
As you can see, upcycling your furniture with paint is a perfect way to refresh the look of your interiors without spending a fortune. Upcycling is great for the environment because it reduces waste and the need for using new materials.
We love upcycled furniture and the ideas above should give you the perfect idea of what you can aim for in your projects. To choose a style, think about what colors are in fashion, and don’t hesitate to browse through catalogs of your favorite furniture stores in search of inspiration. You can even try to use paint to recreate a fabulous chair or a beautiful dresser that normally retails for hundreds of dollars, but you’ll only pay a small chunk of the price to DIY it.
Good luck and don’t forget to have fun!