Passion for Painted Furniture

All three of these pieces are spray painted, I distressed the secretary after painting by rubbing it down with wood stain and steal wool leaving dark streaky marks in the paint.

All three of these pieces are spray painted, I distressed the secretary after painting by rubbing it down with wood stain and steal wool leaving dark streaky marks in the paint.

Anyone who knows me will tell you I love painted furniture! A garage sale find can get an instant transformation from a quick coat of paint. Right now the chalk paint craze is in full swing, aged and distressed to look old and weathered but that is not the kind of painted furniture I am really into. I love a piece with a good clean glossy finish that I have found comes best from a can of spray paint. Gasp! That’s right my friends I use spray paint! I hear a lot of people knock spray paint, which I can understand because I have seen some pretty horrific spray paint jobs, But when done correctly you can get a crisp clean finish you could never get with a brush. I have furniture pieces that I spray painted years ago that have been moved across the country and across the world that are still going strong. Of course I have a few that have gone terribly wrong too (furniture polish residue and spray paint are not friends.)

This little Duncan Phyfe already had a few coats of paint so no guild here,The entire thing got a new coat of paint including the handles.

This little Duncan Phyfe already had a few coats of paint so no guild here,The entire thing got a new coat of paint including the handles.

Sorry! This article is not a tutorial on spray painting furniture, it is actually about the painted furniture itself. I have learned painting furniture can create quite a bit of turmoil especially if you show off the unpainted piece on your Facebook page. There is often a great outcry “Don’t Paint It!” That is fine if you are saying “Don’t Paint It, I want to buy it just like it is.” Otherwise it is just you personal preference. Now I am not encouraging every one to go out and paint their fine antiques but the mass produced furniture of 21st century makes a great palate for a bit of paint and color. I am particularity fond of on the 1940’s Duncan Phyfe  and Reproduction French Provencal “Princess” furniture of the 70’s. These pieces have great lines and lots of detail which look great painted. The bonus is they can also be found in abundance at garage/estate sales and on Craigslist for next to nothing in the U.S.

This French Proviecel piece got a paint makeover and I was able to reuse the handles just the way they were

This French Proviecel piece got a paint makeover and I was able to reuse the handles just the way they were

There is another good reason for painting that is often not seen by the viewer of the Facebook photo. Paint can cove a multitude of sins. Many of these mass production pieces are wood veneer which tends to get damaged over time. Some chips can be corrected with wood filler and sanded down so once painted no one is the wiser. This also goes for nail holes or even holes drilled for handles no longer available. My worst case was a little vanity I bought that had been stored in an abandoned house. I didn’t realize until I was driving it home that one of the turned legs had been viciously gnawed on by some sort of vermin. Well once I got it home I was able to reshape the gnawed leg with wood filler and once it was under a coat of paint no one knew the difference. I think this is the same piece that when I posted the before and after photo someone said they liked it better unpainted. Apparently they could not see the gnawed leg in the photo.

This was the little guy with the chewed up leg. The mirror was missing so I found one to worked well with it. Once it was all painted out you would never know they did not match.

This was the little guy with the chewed up leg. The mirror was missing so I found one to worked well with it. Once it was all painted out you would never know they did not match.

So this is my “PRO” Painting rant. Don’t get me wrong I do have wood finish furniture in my home and I adore a Bird’s Eye Maple veneer but there is also a place in this world for painted furniture, and sometimes a really good reason.  So paint away my friends and feel free to share your results. I would love to see them.

Here are some fellow bloggers and Etsy retailers with their paint make overs:

A gorgeous french provincial dresser by jRoxDesigns

A gorgeous french provincial dresser by jRoxDesigns

This one you can actually buy for yourself at The Papaya Tree on Etsy

This one you can actually buy for yourself at The Papaya Tree on Etsy

This one is from one of my favorite furniture painters NattyByDesign

This one is from one of my favorite furniture painters NattyByDesign

Comments

  1. I think it’s a great idea to paint the furniture! Especially for nursery designs and kids rooms, nobody (that I know) has the dough to just drop on an all new room, but they DO have the coins to pick up some fixer-uppers from Craigslist and voila! My only issue with spray paint are the color options. Where’s your go-to, Maggie? Walmart seems to have the cheapest, but not a huge variety of pretty colors to choose from.

    • Lowes has a good selection as does Walmart but you would not believe the selection Krylon has if you go online and look at the color selection. Many times places like Hobby Lobby and JoAnn’s will have a completely different selection than the big box stores.

      • Gracias! Checking out Krylon now 🙂

        Joann’s and Michael’s seem to have higher prices for their spray paints from what I can remember, but more selection. Walmart literally has some of the grossest colors I’ve ever seen lol

  2. Lisa in AL says:

    LOL, I know you, and yes, you love to paint some furniture! That pink painted piece is adorable.

  3. I love a good coat of paint!! Thanks for including me 🙂

I'd love to hear what you think!

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