Create Your Own Antique-Style French Furniture

Home & Garden Blog

Antique French-style, timber furniture is a popular choice for home decor. This shabby-chic style can also be expensive and may be out of your budget. Fortunately, you can easily create the look yourself for a minimal amount of money. By sourcing a cheap, second-hand piece of timber furniture and treating it to a simple makeover using paint and materials from your local hardware store, you can have a beautiful, elegant, and unique piece of furniture in no time. Here are the steps you should take.

Step 1. Prepare the piece of furniture

Before you paint your piece of furniture, you'll need to prepare the surface for painting. This will ensure that the paint job goes on evenly and adheres well to the surface. If the timber is varnished or lacquered, then you'll need to use sandpaper to expose the bare timber.

If the lacquer or varnish is very thick or the furniture is covered with thick, multiple layers of paint, then sanding may be an almost impossible task. In this case, then you can use a specialised primer which you can get from most hardware stores. This primer can be applied to the existing surface of the furniture, which will then allow you to paint over lacquer, varnish, or paint without the risk of the paint peeling away over time.

Step 2. Apply a wax crayon

One of the most appealing features of antique, French-style furniture is the areas in which the paint has been worn away to reveal bare wood or other layers of paint underneath. You can recreate this rustic, aged look by using a specially designed wax crayon. They are available from many paint suppliers and hardware stores.

The wax crayon is easy to use. You simply rub it along the areas where you wish to create the effect, giving them a thick wax coating. Good spots to use the wax crayon on are places where natural wear and tear would occur, such as along the corners and edges and also over any ornate pieces such as carvings or mouldings.

Once you have painted the piece of furniture and the paint is dry, then you simply rub the areas where you have applied the wax with a soft, lint-free cloth. The wax prevents the paint from adhering to the furniture and will rub off easily to show the timber or paint beneath.

Step 3. Paint the furniture

The final step is to paint the piece of furniture. The colour you choose is up to you but you may like to choose from a traditional French palette which usually means soft pastels in blue, aqua, and green. For the best results, you should use enamel paint. This gives a thicker and more even finish and is more durable than water based paints.

To really achieve the antique look, avoid high gloss enamel paints that will look too shiny and modern. The best option is enamel paint in a matte finish, such as eggshell. If you can't get hold of this type of paint, then you can use low gloss enamel paint, then give the finished product a very light sanding to create a matt finish.

Once the paint is dry, all that's left to do is replace any handles or knobs with new ones that will suit the antique French look. The finished piece will look amazing and make a stunning addition to your home.


27 November 2015

Decorating and Your Home and Garden

Yo! My name is Lisa and I would like to welcome all you guys to my new blog. I was inspired to start this blog because I am tired of visiting people's homes and seeing the same old furniture and the same old designs in use. I used to have boring designs in my home and garden. However, all that changed when my friend Simon came to visit. Simon is a designer and property developer so he has a real eye for bringing out the best in any space. He gave me some top tips and helped me to transform my home and garden.