Aging Furniture with Milk Paint

Eddie Shekari
September 25, 2015

Milk paint is a fun and creative way to turn any ordinary wooden furniture into a unique addition to your home. By applying this lively offbeat paint, you can give your furnishings a more rustic and homey appearance. Milk paint has many distinct characteristics that set it apart from most household paints; this is mainly due to its viscosity. It is a free-flowing liquid, and during its application, you will find that not everything will go as planned, so get ready for some surprises! If you want your furniture to appear neat and crisp, we recommend that you use conventional household products, because milk paint has a mind of its own?but fear not, this is half the fun! Milk paint is not only easy to apply, it?s completely free of harmful chemicals and toxins, which makes its application a great project to do with the whole family! Dressers, nightstands, and vanities seem to be the most common items used with this method, although feel free to use any wooden furniture you like. Just be sure to avoid furnishings with stains or glazes. This tutorial is a simple and enjoyable exercise, but if you ever feel overwhelmed or have other painting concerns, do not hesitate to contact your local Houston painting contractors, Pro Painters.

The first thing you need to do, as with most painting projects, is to thoroughly sand and wipe down the furniture. For this tutorial you should use a 150-grit sandpaper as well as a damp cloth to ensure a clean and dust-free surface. Next, begin mixing your paint. It?s always best to follow the directions of the particular product you?re using, but in most cases, you will be mixing equal parts paint and water. Warm water always works best, because it will help ensure that all those pesky paint clumps will be properly dissolved. Also, the mixing of the paint should be an ongoing process. You should always stir your paint mixture frequently throughout this project.

To apply the milk paint, it is best to use an angled sash brush. Be sure not to put excessive pressure while painting, because this will leave several unwanted lines in your finish. The desired antique look will develop over multiple coats, so do not worry if the milk paint seems very transparent. After your first coat is applied, it is very important to completely let it dry before putting on the second. If a second coat is prematurely painted, you will find yourself in a clumpy mess. It?s ideal to let each coat dry for at least one-to-two hours before painting the next one. Another concern you should dismiss is the flaking that will occur once a coat has dried. This is normal and should be lightly sanded off before the next coat is applied. You do not want any flakes to remain before your second coat, because they will end up leaving lumps in your future layers. The amount of coats you end up implementing is up to you. Many people like to experiment with the painting and sanding processes, because this is how you will find your desired degree of distressment. Get creative with it! The application of each coat and sanding should match your personal creative aesthetic.

Once your coats have dried, it is important that you do not get the furniture wet. Water will permanently stain the paint and will show up as an unintentional blemish. To ensure that the wood and paint is well protected, it is best to apply a clear water-based polycrylic finish. Although, before you do this, take time to once again do a thorough sanding of your furniture to eliminate any unwanted flakes. Now, begin applying your finish. You can do so with a brush or a foam roller; both work quite well. You should put at least three coats of the water-based polycrylic, but if the furniture is going to be near a water source, it is recommended that you use an equal amount of oil-based polycrylic instead. While painting on the finish, be cautious of air bubbles forming. You can easily eliminate these by simply smoothing them out with the brush or roller while they are still wet. Let the finish dry and then?voila! You?ve now created a unique and personalized addition to your home!

The next time you find yourself at a yard sale or antique shop, try to keep an eye out for furnishings that would work well with this method. Experimenting on different types of furniture with various degrees of milk paint can be a fulfilling hobby on its own. As always, we wish you luck on your next painting venture, but keep in mind, Houston painting services are always available for any advice or assistance.

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Eddie Shekari

Eddie founded Pro Painters in 1995 to meet the growing need for high-quality residential and commercial painting needs in Houston. In nearly 20 years, Pro Painters has exponentially grown our client base, serving residents across the greater Houston area. Our core principles have helped us achieve the highest standard of workmanship and customer satisfaction. Our years of experience have allowed us to become an extension to our customers as the all-in-one solution for home makeovers.