I wanted to share my hutch make-over with you and how you can make furniture look distressed with paint. You can also use this technique of adding layers of paint to make a new piece of furniture look old as if it’s been in your family for years and years. This is a DIY project that can really add character to your furnishings and decor.
When we were renovating our kitchen, even though I wanted something old and antique; newer off of Craigslist was in the budget. 🙂 I found this amazing hutch that was the right size and had plenty of storage. It’s only flaw was that it was newer and I wanted something that looked like it came out of an old home. Distressing furniture lends well to a farmhouse style, cottagecore style or even just a home with a vintage or rustic look.
I knew that with paint I could get the look I wanted, I just needed some patience. There a a few distressing techniques I used on this cabinet. First, I sanded the entire piece of furniture so the wood had a bit of a “tooth” on it using a 100 grit sanding block. It doesn’t have to be sanded to bare wood, but just enough so the paint can grip better and won’t peel off. However, if you do want some bare wood to show through the painted furniture, you will want to sand those areas down to wood using a power sander or paint stripper if needed.
After sanding,to add more distressing, carefully add a few dents with the back of a hammer to the wood. Once it is distressed, rub a candle on any edges you wanted to have the bare wood showing through on. The candle wax will act as a resist so the paint doesn’t stick to that area. Then the wood furniture is ready to paint!
To give the illusion of layers of paint, instead of priming with a plain white primer, I used a tinted light grey primer on the base as my first coat. Once the gray primer is dried, you can now add another layer of candle wax in various places. When you go over those areas with a fine-grit sandpaper, the gray primer will show through, giving it another layer of patina and distressing.
After the primer is dry, then add your top coat. I picked a pretty light aqua blue by Benjamin Moore called Jade. For even more age and layers, apply a second coat of paint or even a third. The more paint layers in distressing paint techniques, the older and more aged a piece will look.
Once the paint is dry, take your sandpaper and a damp rag. Wipe the rage over the surface and then sand the paint while it’s slightly wet. This will help keep down the dust. Sand teh areas where you applied the candle wax to lift the paint to the underlying layers or wood. Some people like to use a wire brush as well to achieve a scraped surface look. With this distressed look, all of the imperfections you can add, the better.
As well as sandpaper, I also distressed a bit with masking tape. Once I had the look I wanted, I went over the entire piece with minwax wood stain in American Oak to give it an antique look. You can also use dark wax, however wax will need to be reapplied occasionally. I prefer stain for a lasting look of distressed wood, and using glaze if you want to use paint as your aging medium as another option. Once it dried, I went over the entire piece in Polyacrylic in Satin finish to seal it. Either one will darken the paint for the right effect. If you are trying to decide using wax or poly with paint, you can read this post here.
And then painted the inside the wall color so my white dishes pop, and my grandmother’s collection of hobnail cake plates stood out.
I added rust colored handles and pulls for a more rustic look, and cup handles to the drawers.
It holds so much more than the cabinets we had there, but takes up less space so our little, cozy kitchen actually seems a bit larger. It was such a good decision to pull them out. You can read about our entire kitchen remodel here.
I am so glad I did it. I love it more than if I had bought a piece!!!! You can easily take an old piece and make it look old with some patience and paint!
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