Ever since I have been thinking about writing this post, I have had the lyrics from The Sound of Music’s “My Favorite Things” song stuck in my head… and I can’t seem to shake them. Haha! I am really aging myself, aren’t I?
Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eye lashes
Silver white winters that melt into spring
These are a few of my favorite things! ….La La La La….
Um, ya! I am such a dork!
Recently, I have been working on making over a couple of pieces of furniture and I decided that I really want to share with you some of the products I use whenever I work on a furniture transformation. Not only do these products make my life a little easier, but they help me to create a professional looking finish every time I paint.
I am not sure if you have had a chance to try out some of these products before, but I highly recommend them. Maybe, they can help to make furniture painting an enjoyable experience for you too!
So, on to the first product…
You may be able to relate to this one.
If you ever have had to strip a piece of furniture before, you will know that it can be a messy, stinky and sometimes a very frustrating job. Most paint strippers take a long time to work, or don’t work at all. They can also only be used in a very well ventilated area outdoors because they are so toxic and the clean-up is a real P-I-T-A!
My absolute favorite go-to paint stripper is Circa 1850 Soft Strip Stripper. It works like a charm for me and a little goes a long way with this stuff! I have had this bottle above for quite some time and it is still at least half full and I have used it on at least 2 buffet tops and a dresser.
Another huge bonus with this stripper is that it is made without extremely toxic Methylene Chloride or any caustics. It is not non-toxic, but it is a big improvement to regular strippers. It has a pleasant odor (no chemical smell) and it doesn’t make me sick or give me a headache like other paint strippers do (I seem to have developed sensitivity to chemical smells over the years because of the toxic cleaning products I used to use).
Please remember though, when using this product, you must still wear eye protection, a face mask, gloves, preferably the nitrile kind, and long sleeves/long pants. Keep in mind that this stripper is supposed to take paint off so you can imagine what it could do to your skin or your eyes if you get some on you! It would also be best to work with it near an open window or in your garage where there is some ventilation. Also, if you are making over an older piece of furniture, make sure you test for lead paint before stripping the paint or even sanding. Your health and your safety is the most important thing!
Finally, I have found that this paint stripper also has an easy clean-up. So helpful!
I won’t get into details right now about its application, but please stay tuned for my upcoming tutorial on how I strip furniture.
As you may know, the majority of second-hand furniture that can be found today is very grimy and is covered in oils and other nasties that can cause paint not to stick, especially if it is a vintage or antique piece of furniture. Most people regularly use TSP (trisodium phosphate) as a preparation before painting their walls or pieces of furniture. The only problem with using TSP is that it is toxic to the environment.
I have found a safe alternative. It is called Natura Safe Prep. This stuff is the goods for sure! It is safe for the environment, safe to use, odorless and you don’t have to rinse it off like you do with TSP. It is also very affordable at only $4.99 for a Litre here in Canada. A little goes a long way with this stuff. I just put a couple of tablespoons of Safe Prep into a litre of warm water, wash my furniture piece with a rag, let everything dry and I am ready to paint. So easy!
Another product that I use on a regular basis is Glidden Gripper Primer. This is a wonderful bonding primer that also blocks stains. I use it on everything, even pieces of furniture with a very shiny finish. I just give the piece I am painting an all-over light sanding before applying this primer to give the wood a bit of “tooth”. To-date, I have never had a problem with my paint chipping off or the paint not sticking. I usually apply two coats of this primer, letting it dry well in between coats.
If I am working on a few pieces where I will be painting a similar color, I have my primer tinted closely to whatever color I am planning on painting. My favorite color for tinting is Behr Dark Gray. I can post the exact formula here if you like later today. Just let me know if you are interested!
For those of you looking for Glidden Gripper Primer, it can usually be found at your local Dulux paint store.
What’s next? Carrying on!
Let me count the ways I love my 400 grit sandpaper! It is ah-mazing! This is a large part of why my finished pieces of furniture are as smooth as velvet or as soft as a baby’s little feet. If you haven’t ever used 400 grit sandpaper to sand your furniture before, you are seriously missing out!
I like to sand with 400 grit sandpaper between each and every layer or finish that I apply, whether it be when I am priming, painting or topcoating. I especially like the 3M Sandblaster sandpaper above as it makes light work of what you are sanding.
What I like to do is take one of the sanding sheets out of the package, fold it in half down the middle and then in half again. I then tear the sheet into 4 where I have folded. Lastly, I wrap one of the torn sanding sheets around a rectangular sanding block. This makes a perfect sanding block which works wonderfully to sand the flat parts of your furniture piece like the top, the sides or the doors. I find this method is also cheaper than buying multiple sanding blocks because they wear out really quickly. This way I can re-use my sanding block just by adding new sandpaper around it. Don’t throw out your old sanding blocks! With some new sandpaper, they can be used again and again!
What also helps to give your piece of furniture a flawless finish?
Tack cloths do! These little pieces of gooey cloth work perfectly for removing all of your sanding dust, bits of fuzz or any other nasties that will get stuck in your paint finish. They are so inexpensive (only $1.50 each) and find that I usually use at least two tack cloths per piece of furniture that I am working on. I tend to use one for the primer and paint layers and then I reserve a brand new one for the top coat layers.
I can’t say enough good things about tack cloths! To me, they are essential!
Lastly, I have been buying these inexpensive dollar store paint brushes for at least 6 months now. These are not just any paint brushes from the dollar store. Why do I love them so much? First of all these paint brushes barely shed as compared to regular cheap paint brushes. I can finish an entire project and these brushes haven’t lost a single bristle or the odd time it only happens once. There is almost nothing worse than painting and having to pick bristles out of your newly painted finish.
These paint brushes are also super soft and very easy to wash. I love to use them for applying gel medium to my photo transfers (I use the biggest brush), applying Mod Podge to a finished project, doing touch-ups to my paint finish or for cutting-in on a piece of furniture before rolling the rest with a roller. Because these brushes are so soft, there are barely any brush strokes in my paint finish.
You can see my love for these brushes in my previous posts below.
Where can you find out more about these products? For most of the products I have mentioned, you can just click on the link below each of the photos to go to Amazon (my affiliate sponsor) or Home Hardware or you should also be able to find them at your local hardware store.
I hope you found this review of my favorite products helpful. I really wish when had I started painting way back when that someone had told me what products they like to use because it would have saved me buying a lot of crappy things that didn’t work worth a darn. What a lot of money I wasted!
So please stay tuned for more product reviews. I plan to share some more of my other favorite products with you again soon.
I would love to hear if you have used any of these products in the past and whether you like them or not. Also, if you have any of your own favorites, we would love to hear about them!
As always, thank you for all your support, comments, Facebook likes, tweets, and pins this week.
I hope you enjoy the rest of your day!
This affiliate-sponsored post has been written by me. All of the thoughts expressed about the suggested products in this post are 100% my own and are of my honest opinion. Please take precautions when using the products I have mentioned and familiarize yourself with the instructions on the labels before use.
You can read my full disclosure here.
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