Terms and Definitions
Color Blocking-A multi-colored approach that connects hues instead of combining them.
Easy Color Staining-A thin layer of color that lets the wood’s natural grain show through.
Fast Lacquering-Spray-on sophistication that produces a high luster-without lots of layering.
Soft Blending-A two-tone technique that subtly combines-and hides surface flaws.
Durable Coating-The best paint and process for a long-lasting finish in heavy-duty areas.
About the Techniques
Color Blocking adds drama and calls attention to the angles and curves of furniture.
Choose from three focal colors from your room’s décor. Mask off one section of furniture at a time (tabletop, drawers, legs) and paint on a single shade. Let dry. Repeat with another section until the desired look is achieved.
For old furniture, sand off old finish, then wipe down and paint.
To give new, unfinished furniture a wash of color, dilute latex paint (1 part paint to 1 part water) first, then wipe on one thin coat so natural wood grain shows through.
Are you really short on time? Try these:
Color Staining-Sheer and subtle, this process is a great way to to let the beauty of the wood grain show through.
Start with unfinished or stripped wood surfaces. Dilute latex paint with water (1 to 1 ratio). Wipe the mixture onto wood with a damp rag or sponge; let dry. To make color last, finish with a coat of butcher’s wax or polyurethane.
Fast Lacquering-The effect is slick and shiny. Real lacquering involves applying layers and layers of paint to produce a glossy high sheen.
This particular method takes much less time and energy; all you need is a drop cloth and a can of high-gloss spray paint.
Lightly sand the surface to roughen so that it can accept paint; wipe with a tack cloth. Using plastic drop cloths, tent off the area around the piece (spray paint has a tendency to float through the air). Spray on a high-gloss enamel, holding the can at least 8 inches away from the piece and using wide, graceful strokes.
Please Note: Two light coats of paint are better than one thick one. You’ll also avoid drips.
For the best results, let the paint dry between coats.
Soft Blending is textural and interesting. By gently mixing two hues, you create a surface that’s subtle, but with interesting depth. The soft, streaked pattern that blending offers is also great for hiding imperfections.
Sand and wipe the furniture piece. Apply a thick undercoat of latex or oil paint; let dry. Lightly stroke on a thin coat of a second shade, letting the undercoat show through. Let the second coat dry thoroughly. Finish with polyurethane or coat with butcher’s wax.