Sunday, July 10, 2016

DIY {Well, a sister DIY!}: Distressing furniture using soap + spray paint!

I wanted to share my sister Bianca's new hobby: distressing furniture with soap and spray paint!
I wanted to show off some of her pieces and do a little Q&A with her!

She first tried refinishing this bar cart a few weeks ago,
 she scored it at a flea in Delaware for $12,

I was so impressed by how good it came out!

Love the little glasses houses on top

The next piece she refinished was this cute side table with magazine holders on the sides,
she got at the Goodwill for $5

& she refinished this one with a green paint:

Perfectly styled with her huge plant!

1. What got you started in this hobby of refinishing furniture?
Bianca- "Well, I really like this style of furniture and was tired of paying the high price for it. When I bought my vanity from Forever Useful Furniture that was refinished, I decided it was time to give it a try." {see that thrift trip and vanity HERE}

2. How did you learn?
Bianca- "I watched some youtube videos, realized how easy it seemed and decided to give it a try."
Similar video but this uses vaseline instead of bar soap- Sincerely, Sara D. on YouTube

3. List of materials you use:
Bianca- "I use cheap soap like the white Dial bar soap, satin finish spray paint, I use the Rust-Oleum brand. I don't want the piece to be shiny after so I use the satin finish. I prefer to use the medium type steel wool to distress the piece. I also use sandpaper 80 grit to achieve different types of the distress look."

4. Step by Step Process:
Step 1: "The first step is selecting the piece you want to work on. Look for real wood pieces that could use some help from a thrift store or flea market. I worked on a piece for my sister that was not real wood, it was a compressed particle board piece (similar to Ikea furniture) and it was difficult to achieve the same look because it absorbs the paint different and is harder to do. You can sand the piece to get the original paint or staining off, but I don't do it like that. If you do sand it the spray paint clings better.

This piece was found at the Goodwill a few years ago and was picked up because of the interesting shape on the top and the claw feet. I love claw feet. I have had it for many years already and it was scratched when we bought it and I would like to breath new life into it.

Step 2: The next step I do is to apply the bar soap to the places that you want to stay the original color after paint. Especially the edges because that is where the piece would be naturally distressed if it was an old piece, showing a life of bumping and wear and tear. I am beginning to think that less soap is better so it doesn't chunk up under the paint. Make sure you add some to the top if you want the piece to look like it had something on top of it or if the top will be exposed.

For this piece we also covered the brass feet in this step so they will be free from spray paint in the next step.

Step 3: Spray paint the piece. You don't want the piece to completely dry, the paint I use is sticky like plastic based, it you wait too long it's too hard to distress. You don't want the piece to be sticky to the touch, but you should wait 20-30 minutes (depends on the furniture, the heat, and the type of paint) before the distressing step.

Step 4: Distress using steel wool and/or sand paper. Work until the brown wood comes all the way through. I work until I am happy with how much the piece is distressed. I wanted the green piece that I made to be more distressed than the white so I worked a little more on the top of that piece.

In this piece I also used Nevr-Dull to polish the brass claw feet and make them shine. You can buy it at a car store.

Step 5: Wipe down the piece after about an hour. Check it out to make sure that you didn't miss any big spots.

Step 6: I put the piece back in the room that it will go in and style it. At this point I can look at the piece in a different light and make sure I didn't miss any large areas.

I styled this piece in my bedroom with an awesome vintage chair that we recently thrifted.

5. How do you decide when a piece is done?
Bianca- "It is up to how distressed you want it to look. With my first piece, the bar cart, I styled it in the dining room and realized that I missed a few spots so I went back and distressed it more and used the rag to wipe it down again and restyled it in my home."

6. Tips for someone looking to do their first piece:
Bianca- "There are many different ways to do this process, for example the woman who painted my vanity from Forever Useful Furniture uses a very expensive paint from England. You can also use candle wax instead of soap, but I like the soap method. There are a lot of videos online, but it really is just soap, spray paint, sand paper, wipe down!"

7. What you have learned from your first couple of pieces?
Bianca- "I was surprised by how easy it was and after my first piece I was not discouraged to try it again. I am very methodical, I have trouble creating a gallery wall because they all end up in straight lines. I was surprised that I could work with the random nature of this design and not have it end up in a pattern or in parallel lines."

8. What would you change in your next pieces / what are you looking to improve:
Bianca- "In the future I have to look into sealing the pieces with a matte finish, especially if I do a piece that will get a lot of use like a dining table or something. You want it distressed but not completely worn out. It is important not to distress everything in your home, I do think there is such thing as too much with this decor style."

I love these pieces that she has made her own,
They fit perfectly into her rustic style!

I also love this ladder that she converted into a blanket holder!

Perfectly shabby chic!

Thank you Bianca for sharing your process, progress and results with me & my blog!

See other apartment pictures from her previous apartments {HEREHERE}
and her current town house decor {HERE / HERE}

What DIY's are you up to recently?
Would you try this process to refinish a piece that could use some TLC?

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