Wednesday, August 25, 2010

How I Did The Mantle Re-do

In my previous post of my mantle re-do, I showed you the before and after. Now, I’m going to attempt to explain how I achieved that chippy look. Whenever I painted furniture, I always used the sanding method to distress the piece, but for the mantle I wanted more of a chipped paint look. By trial and error, this is how I accomplished it. I’m SURE there is a better way that professionals do it, but this is how I did it.

Here was the before:


First, I taped off the mantle to protect the brick, then I used a tinted primer left over from another project. This is the primer I used, and I’ve been happy with it with my other projects. It claims that you don’t need to sand the piece, so I didn’t.


Here it is primed:


After that dried, (maybe an hour?), I randomly painted with leftover paint samples from Sherwin Williams. The darker color was Seal Skin, and the grey is a mixture of Seal Skin with other leftover paint. It was a beige color. These were the colors that would show when the paint “chipped” off.


After that dried, I painted with more leftover paint, Benjamin Moore Linen White in an Eggshell finish. I think it was important that it was not in a flat finish. Flat dries too quickly. As the Linen White was drying, I started taking off the paint. I didn’t wait until it was completely dry, because it is harder to peel the paint off that way. I didn’t put all the coats on before I started peeling either. I alternated peeling, and recoating the unpeeled parts, if that makes sense. By the way, I used a bristle brush on the edges, and a sponge roller on top. the brush allows for more paint to be applied at the same time. Towards the end, I lightly used a sponge brush.

Here I am trying to get that paint off. I used my finger nails, a trowel, a screwdriver, and whatever I could find. You can see brush marks in this picture, but we can get rid of that later.



I used my embossing heat gun (a heat gun used to make embossed cards) to heat the paint to scrape off if the paint was too dry, and also to achieve that bubbling effect. When I used the heat gun, I made sure to use the trowel (and not my fingernail) to scrape off the paint, as the heat gun heated up the mantle quite a bit.


I live in Colorado, and with the dry air, the paint was drying too quickly, so I would continue to paint on top of where I wanted chipping, because it loosens up the under layers.

So, I kept going at this process until I got what I wanted. I also sanded in a few spots to get down to the original color of the mantle, but not much. I then went over lightly with a very fine sand paper over the areas where I didn’t want to see the brush marks. In the end, I found the mantle was too white to look like it was an old piece. (Sorry I forgot to take a picture of the white chipped mantle.) I “dirtied” it up a bit by rubbing a gel stain (found in the paint dept.) on top in a Walnut finish, they wipe it off quickly.

I did not distress the top of the mantle, as I didn’t want too bumpy of a surface for all those revolving accessories. Plus, I’m too short to see the top of the mantle, and I’m the only one that notices these things around here. :) I did, however, rub on that gel stain and wiped it off.

Here is the final piece:



I may end up going back to distress and remove some more paint later, we’ll see. I also may “crackle” it in a few spots as well. For now I will live with it.

I hope I was able to explain my steps. If not, please feel free to ask questions.

1 comment:

Gloria (The Little Red House with the White Porch) said...

Thanks for sharing how you did it. I am going to keep this on hand in case I want to 'distress' something, as you did your mantle.