There’s an art to upcycling old furniture and rather than buying new, we’re firm believers in making the most of what you’ve got. Here at Eclectic At Home, we know there are many reasons why you need shabby chic furniture in your home and if you happen to have an unwanted and tired piece at home, there is no reason why you can’t reuse it. So before you throw that old bookcase or wooden chair away, read this blog to find out how you can increase the shabby chic and vintage look in your home!


Selection & Preparation
Once you have chosen the item of furniture you wish to freshen up, you will need to prepare the surface for paint. To do this, take off handles, metal pieces or hinges and strip the paint or use sandpaper.

Dust Removal
When you have finished stripping and sanding, remove any dust from the piece using tepid water and make sure you allow it to dry. If you have pets, keep them away from your furniture piece to avoid hairs landing on it. In addition, try to avoid painting outside on a sunny day as insects may land on fresh paint and it is difficult to pick them off without leaving marks.

Add Primer & Paint
Primer is not always necessary but it depends on the condition of the wood. If you are happy with the condition of your furniture, apply two coats of your choice of paint. It is best to use oil based eggshells or matt paints as they sand better. When painting, move in the direction of the wood grain with a thin layer and remember it is about quality not quantity.


It is important to remember to leave each layer of paint to dry before applying the next. At this stage, you can add a thin layer of a darker or paler paint to achieve the shade you want. It is also recommended to wait a day before distressing to allow the paint to dry properly.


Although not everyone likes to distress furniture, as an alternative you can just leave your piece after painting and add a layer of wax or varnish for protection. For those who do want to distress, there are many ways that you can do it. As a general rule, you should emphasise areas where wear and tear would occur such as the corners, edges, drawers and handles. When you’re happy with the distressing, add a layer of wax or varnish.

So there you have it, a guide to how you can make your own shabby chic furniture at home!

To view our full range of waxes and primers, please click here.

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