5 years ago we bought our first home. We lived in a one bedroom apartment and then a basement prior to our home purchase so we didn’t have much to furnish our home. Painting furniture is a great way to decorate your home on a budget but painting furniture became much more than that to me. Now I enjoy teaching others how to paint furniture.
Where to find furniture to paint…
Getting into painting furniture doesn’t have to be hard or expensive. There are many places to find cheap or even free furniture! Once people know you like to paint furniture you will be given more pieces than you know what to do with!
If you really don’t know if this is for you or if you are looking to spend as little as possible you can visit this post on Places to Find Free Furniture. I would guess that most of my pieces were found for free or given to me for free. Keep your eyes open to the possibility of what a piece could become!
You can also check sites like Craigslist to find pieces in your area. I have found great deals for furniture. Like this hutch, I picked up for $30 plus took home several other pieces. I do have some tips for finding and updating Craigslist finds.
You have furniture to paint, now what?
You might be wondering, ‘Is it really as easy as it sounds?‘ and I am going to surprise you and say no. Most people get started thinking there’s really no prep work, no sanding, and they are caught off guard when they realize there is some amount of work involved. Then factor in the fact that you will be the most critical of your own work and you’re going to start wondering is it all worth it? And my answer will be a definite YES!
When I first learned how to paint furniture, I used a homemade matte finish paint recipe and stuck to it for years. Eventually, I changed up the recipe but still used the same ingredients and the same process. It’s a great recipe for getting started painting furniture. Or you can use a chalk based mix like this one.
I spent the last year trying new paints and discovering how much I absolutely love them. Making homemade matte finish paint is still my go-to because it’s easy to get my hands on but with a little planning, buying premade paint will yield great results. Why?
- Premixed colors and color recipes give you great results they already go well together so color coordinating is a breeze.
- Great consistency. Premixed paints are typically very smooth.
- Natural ingredients. I love finding paints that are safe for my kids and for the environment.
Choosing the color to paint furniture is the hardest part for me. Mainly because I do love colors and every room in my house would have a different color palette if I’m not careful. My house was quickly going that way before I realized I needed to go with neutrals. That way the pops of color, either furniture or home decor, will pop even more. Find more of my tips on choosing paint colors for painting furniture.
Choosing a color might depend on the paint you choose. Premixed paints come in an assortment of colors. Some you can mix to make your own color. Over the past year, I tried new paints and created a list of the best paints for wood furniture and I’ve also painted on metal.
Color Inspiration for Painting Furniture
Learning how to paint furniture also means learning how to coordinate paint colors. I’ve gathered some color inspiration from my favorite bloggers and others to help you choose a color when painting furniture. I had so much fun gathering all of these pieces and hope you enjoy them too!
- White Painted Furniture
- Grey Painted Furniture
- Blue Painted Furniture
- Black Painted Furniture
- Green Painted Furniture
- Red Painted Furniture
You can find more colors on the Painted Furniture By Colors Series page.
How to Protect Painted Furniture
Protecting your furniture is the final step of the whole process. I think your prep work has a lot to do with how long your finish will last but selecting the right products for your furniture is pretty important too. I love that how you protect your painted piece is also a choice of how you want your piece to feel.
There are many options for this. You can find poly, wax or sealers in a range of sheens. I prefer a slight sheen but not shiny. You might prefer your furniture to be glossy, like new. I did in the beginning and found I much rather have more of a flat finish.
You can also use paint for different techniques. Dry brushing and whitewashing are two techniques I think are beautiful. I used both on this table top and I think it turned out beautifully!
What else can you paint?
Don’t stop at furniture. Painting home decor helps you have a unified color palette, and gives you a more clean or modern look. Don’t have the money in the budget to update interior doors? Why not paint them? I painted my front door and LOVE it! One day we plan to update the whole entryway (door and windows) but for now this works and it’s fun!
When I go to thrift stores looking for furniture I also look through the picture frames. Don’t overlook a picture frame because it may be dated or the wrong color. Paint can help with that! I have some frames that are just open too. They are great for adding to a gallery wall. Painting picture frames is an easy way to decorate your walls and make your home feel more cozy. I’ve also painted my fair share of chairs (here’s a tutorial from my friend). Not my favorite but it’s a great way to add a pop of color to a table!
Where to find more information on how to paint furniture.
I’ve written an detailed ebook on how to paint furniture using homemade chalky finish paint. From start to finish I take you through the journey of learning how to paint furniture. What supplies to use, how to use them, and tips to avoid the mistakes I made in the beginning.