I recently posted about my practicing how to paint and distress using Annie Sloan chalk paint and wax. I used this same paint and technique on the Antique Dollar Store Tray project. The bench obviously took longer than the tray, but in the end I am happy with the results. I have already moved on to painting a side table, and have plans for a dresser. While I am planning on selling these pieces, I am finding I am getting attached to this bench and may keep it. I am still very new to painting with chalk paint, but I can say with certainty that the learning curve is quick. You can use this same "old white" paint technique on any furniture you would like to update.
For this project you will need:
Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Old White (or your preferred chalk paint brand)
Annie Sloan Soft Wax-Clear
Annie Sloan Soft Wax-Dark
Brush for applying wax.
Sand paper (I used a 250 grit pad)
Buffing cloth (Tshirt, towel etc.)
I purchased this bench on Craigslist. I liked its shape. Annie Sloan's book suggests looking for antique or reproduction pieces that lend themselves well to the distressed look.
Start by either washing your piece or do a light sanding. I lightly sanded the piece which removed the old varnish. Annie Sloan paint says you do not need to prime unless the piece is greasy. Sanding is always a safe bet for removing dirt.
Paint your first coat of Old White. Start by painting the piece upside down. If you start upside down you will not miss any spots this way. Let dry.
Paint a second coat of old white if needed. On oak or dark wood two coats will be needed.
Wash your brush in water.
Once your paint is dry use your sand paper or sand paper pad to distress edges on the piece. I run sand paper along the arms the tops and sides. Sand the area randomly, but where you think the piece would naturally become distressed. Make sure to sand the corners or raised areas that would naturally get bumped. This distressing will reveal some of the wood below.
Once distressed you can start with the wax. You want to work in a small area of the piece. Don't work in too big of an area or the wax will dry too quickly on you.
Start by applying a small amount of clear wax with a brush to a smaller section of your piece. Next wipe away any excess with cheesecloth while rubbing the wax into the area. You will notice your paint will start to look much different.
Next go over the same area with the dark wax. Dab on the dark wax with your brush making sure to get it into the grooves of the piece. Wipe off with cheesecloth.
Here you can see the piece half waxed.
Continue the last two steps until your piece is done.
Wash your wax brush in mineral spirits and rinse.
When your piece is all waxed you need to let it dry 24 hours and then buff it with a soft cloth or a shoe shine brush.
The piece should be smooth and hard. If it is at all slightly sticky then you applied too much wax. Remove some with mineral spirits, or try soap and water and a scrub pad, and then rebuff.
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The Rebel Crafter