How to upcycle furniture with paint
Upcycling is a great way to breathe new life into good furniture – and it’s amazing how a simple lick of paint can completely transform an old chair, chest or table.
Buying used furniture
- Have a good idea of what type of furniture you need before heading to car boot sales and markets – and when you see something, picture where it would go in your home. This way you’ll be less likely to buy pieces that aren’t particularly useful.
- Remember there’s a huge used furniture market online. Many people sell pieces at bargain prices, or even give them away for free on community threads and websites.
- It's important to be flexible if you’re looking for a really unique piece. Some creative thinking can turn old doors into smaller cupboards, or crates into shelving. For inspiration take a look at DIY and upcycling blogs online.
- If a piece looks shabby because of a bad or fading paint job, or it has surface scratches, you can easily transform it with a little sanding or painting.
- Make sure you check furniture is structurally sound for the way you’ll use it. If there are holes in older wooden furniture, it’s probably had woodworm.
Try using a low tack masking tape when working with paint. This will help prevent paint coming off when you remove the tape.
Achieving a personal look
There are lots of ways to give your piece individual character. Many upcyclers choose to fade their new coat of paint with sandpaper. Focus on areas that would be touched the most such as handles. For good quality wood pieces, you could also consider using finishing products such as waxes and varnishes.
Using spray paint can be an effective way to transform metal furniture and it’s much quicker than traditional painting. Wear a mask and remove any rust and chipped paint with a wire brush before sanding. Again, if you want some inspiration you can check out the upcycling community’s bloggers and writers.
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