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Paint a Table!

Painted table Ok, so I got a little carried away. I started painting this cute little table, and I just couldn't stop. This was my first experiment with a piece of unfinished furniture. I had a lot of fun, but I had so many ideas and only the one piece of furniture to experiment on!! So this table combines several different techniques - it has been painted, sanded, decoupaged and rubber stamped. I rather like the effect, even though it's kind of busy. Here's what worked, and what didn't....

The Painting... You will need:

  • Med and fine grade sand paper
  • Wood sealant
  • Acrylic paints
  • Sponge brushes, large and small
  • Fine paint brushes for the delicate work
I started with an unfinished table, and I made the mistake of thinking I could get by without sanding. I quickly realized that was a mistake, and I started over, sanding down the rough edges with medium sand paper, and just going over the whole piece with fine sand paper. Then I applied a coat of wood sealant and let it dry overnight.

Antiquing Methods Next I wanted to try two different techniques for getting an "antiqued" look, without actually going to the crackle effect. First I painted the whole table ivory and allowed it to dry.

For the first method - on the top of the table I tried applying a coat of dusty rose paint. I allowed that to mostly dry, and then sanded the center of the surfaces. The result was worn looking, but probably would have taken quite a bit of sanding to really get the effect. I ended up applying a little diluted ivory paint to the center of the table top with a sponge brush.

The second method involved sponging on a layer of very diluted dusty rose paint, letting it dry just a little, and then sponging it off again. This method gave me an interesting texture - not really antique looking, but I liked it.

Paint / DecorateDecorating: This was so much fun! Basically I just picked contrasting colors and used a very fine brush to paint patterns, lines, etc. on any viable surface or corner. For places where a straight line was crucial, I used painter's tape, laid down firmly on the surface. Firmly. In places where I didn't press it down, the paint leaked underneath the edge, and I had to redo the other color. I made this mistake several times before finally getting it through my thick skull. :)

Decoupage: I had some wrapping paper with hearts made out of roses - a perfect choice for decoupage! I spent some tedious hours cutting the little hearts and leaves, but it was worth it. I used them sparsely on this table, but I have another piece I'm working on to match that will be almost covered with these little hearts. (For decoupage basics, check this page.)

Stamped rosesStamping and Painting Roses: The last thing I did was to use Glaze paints and some rose shaped rubber stamps. This paint is wonderful for this kind of repeated pattern painting. After the basic shapes dried, I went over the shadows with a darker shade, and the highlights with a lighter shade of the paint, but it probably wasn't necessary. Then I painted a vine connecting the fs and the leaves with a very fine paintbrush.

Last but not least, I covered the entire piece with a coat of varnish.

Now, I'm off to buy some more furniture to play with!

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