How do you make that old ugly 80’s furniture look better?
Yuck! Most people would say throw-it away! Or donate it! Or Freecycle it!
I say reuse it! Make it better for about $5-$20 and your time!
About 5 years ago my husband and I were doing our typical Walmart shopping trip which always included looking at clearance items. This particular day this Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Kit caught my attention it was called Accents by Rust-Oleum Brand – Distressed Antique Black. I bought 2 kits for $5 a piece. (Note: This was 5+ years ago.)
At the time, we were living in a small townhouse that we had owned for a couple years and I was interested in painting picture frames black and maybe a couple other pieces as well. I really like black furniture. I’m a huge fan of Pottery Barn and Crate & Barrel style furniture. My taste is classic clean lines with a french country twist.
Since, then we moved to a single family house and I started to paint some projects as I found the time. In fact, I’ve renewed and created about 8 pieces of furniture with 1 can! I’ve painted a quilt rack, two bedroom side tables, a discounted Crate & Barrel table (normally $450 down to $150 due to large scratches), bathroom cabinet, book shelf, and headboard. Note: I painted the quilt rack and bedside table last year when I was about 9 months pregnant. It was very difficult to bend down to paint. I sure missed having a waist. 🙂
Just this week I finished an old bookshelf that had seen better days. It was made out of hardwood and fake wood that was more or less cardboard. This was an 70’s/80’s piece that my in-laws had used in the basement for different uses. We plan to use it to hold our AV equipment.
While my daughter napped I quickly painted it one coat of the Rust-Oleum Distressed Black base coat. It took about an hour to paint. I was very quick about it since I had limited amount of time. It dried in about an hour. Tonight we plan on putting it back in the basement and set-up the equipment. The one coat worked really well because the wood color still comes through and matches our IKEA black stain furniture. I could have sanded it and then added the top coat tint stain that came with the kit but I will let it go as-is.
I highly recommend this paint. If you can’t find it at your local Walmart or home center, then look for Rust-Oleum accent or American Accents paint in a matte/satin black and then a tint stain in a light brown and you have your own kit. (I don’t recommend the cheap brush in the kit. I used it on a project and then I had to resand and start over. Use it as a duster instead.)
- Black base coat
- Antique top coat
- Sanding pad
- Paint brush (use it as a duster instead!)
- Decorating Ideas booklet
I always recommend high quality brushes. It is so important to do a project with high quality brushes because the application comes out very smooth. It also makes it easier to do touch ups. Plus, the brush keeps its shape while a cheap brush will fall apart as you paint. I’ve had bristles come out and appear in the paint. Plus, you can complete a paint job in half the time with a good quality brush. I love the Wooster brand brushes. They are easy to use and easy to clean up. I’ve owned several of them for years. I just wash them as soon as I’m done, all I use is soap (dishwashing soap) and water, then dry with a paper towel, reshape the bristles, put back in the original cover and let dry standing up-right. The brush will usually dry in a couple hours ready to be used again.
These are my opinions, experiences and suggestions I don’t have any affiliations with the companies or products above.