We’ve been up-cycling furniture for many years now and have completed hundreds of projects. During this time we have had the opportunity to try out a great deal of different products and techniques.
Many people ask us what products we find the best and which do we use on our projects, so we thought it would be a good idea to put together a resources list of all the products that we have used and come to rely on in our business.
Please note: We only recommend products that I have tried and tested personally and use regularly in our own business. We will never promote or endorse a product without knowing the performance characteristics and usage requirement.
Most of the time we rely on Annie Sloan Chalk Paint for my projects as it is so easy to apply and gives a great finish. It comes in a range of fantastic colours that work perfectly for almost any project. If you can’t find the exact shade you are after this pain is incredibly easy to mix across the range to get the exact shade you are looking for.
When we need a latex based paint, the paint of choice is Farrow & Ball Estate Eggshell. This is an acrylic paint that performs like and oil based one. Very smooth to apply and gives a nice tough finish. This is another range that comes in some gorgeous colours to compliment your finest furniture.
If you’re looking for some colour inspirations using this fantastic range I can highly recommend the book Farrow &; Ball: Living With Colour.
We have also used Rustoleum paint for our projects. While a lot thinner than Annie Sloan chalk paint, it glides on perfectly, and gives a great finish.
If using a lighter colour over a dark project piece, we would recommend using a primer first.
We haven’t used that many finishing waxes as once we have found a product that is easy to use and gives good results we tend not to look too much further. The wax we use most of the time is Briwax clear, or if we’re looking for a more antique finish we will use Dark Oak over some clear wax. The full tutorial on how to use this technique can be found here. We also find Annie Sloan wax to be excellent as it can also be bought in larger sized cans.
For general use on repairing wooden furniture I will use a goodPVA wood glue. If, however I am sticking on appliques or doing some more detailed repairs I will usually use Mitre Mate as it’s cyanoacrylate based (like superglue) but as it comes with a activator, sets rock hard in seconds and bonds with incredible strength. Once something is set with this glue, it is staying put!
When using a glue like this, or any other product that is likely to mark or adhere to your skin you must be sure to wear unpowdered latex gloves to protect your hands.
Check out our blog to get a run down of the different types of glue you can use, and what we recommend.
I’m always looking for new designs and ideas as are most folks who have been bitten by the Shabby Chic bug! There are some great books by Annie Sloan that go into great detail about how to get the desired look for your project using her range of paints. These books contain some fantastic pointers both about which paints to use but also which styles of French decor work well together to create the right design look.
I have a lot to thank Annie for and can’t recommend her books highly enough. I have listed a few of my favourites below.
Annie Sloan Quick and Easy Paint Transformations
Another great resouce is the Shabby Chic Ideas book! Packed full of great ideas for creating the perfect home!
If you have read my free ebook then you will know that I’m not a great fan of traditional wood fillers unless a piece is to be stained rather than painted. For me, a much more useful alternative is Car Body Filler as it’s quicker and more convenient to use. If you do use this, make sure that you use an Onion Board with it as it will make life much easier for you.
Sticking with the car theme, if you are fighting colour bleed on a project and need a good stain blocker that’s quick and easy to use, I will reach for a can of White Car Body Primer.This stuff works really well in most cases and is very easy to use.
If a stain is that much tougher or the are that needs coverage is a bit larger, then I will use a Zinsser primer to block stains. Their Bullseye 321 is water based and has great stain blocking power, however if you really want to bring out the big guns you could always opt for the shellac based BIN Primer, which will block just about most difficult bleeds.
Decoupage and Image Transfer
For these creative niches there is one must have product in your toolkit and that isMod Podge This great stuff will create a tough barrier over your decoupage and also transfer your images onto a hard surface so that you can customize your favourite project with ease.
Queen Anne Legs
On many of my projects we find it adds a lot more style when the piece is mounted onto a nice set of Queen Anne Style Legs We usually buy our legs from Amazon as we find they are high quality and are available in a range of sizes.
I hope that at least some of this information has been helpful. If you need any more help then please feel free to get in touch.