Do you love the look of exposing natural wood through distressed, shabby chic paint? Come see this tutorial all about distressing with sandpaper!
In this brand new video tutorial, we’ll show you how to distress your painted piece with sandpaper to reveal the original wood color underneath.
Watch this video to see our company co-founder, Rosanne distressing a chair in our limited edition color, Summer Blueberries!
How To Distress Furniture With Sandpaper | Painted Wood Furniture Distressing Technique
Step 1) Prep your surface
It’s always a good idea to wipe down your piece before painting it to remove any dust or oils that may be on the surface. Depending on what type of product was previously used on it, you may need to do a bit of sanding as well. For more tips on how to prep your piece before painting, check out our surface prep tutorial.
Step 2) Apply your first coat
Once your surface is ready to be painted, you can crack open that paint can. Make sure you shake and stir the can well before dipping your brush in! For more tips on how to get a smoothly painted finish, come see our tutorial on paint application.
Step 3) Add a second coat if necessary
Depending on the type of surface you’re working with and the colors you choose, you may find you’ll want a second coat to get the coverage you’re looking for. Make sure you wait about an hour after painting your first coat before starting the second as you want to make sure it’s properly dry before you add more paint. Let your second coat dry for at least one hour before proceeding to the next step.
Step 4) Distress
Once your paint is fully dry, you’re ready to start distressing. You can use any type of sand paper but we recommend sanding sponges or sanding blocks. They’re easier to control so you’ll be able to distress exactly where you want to. Start out with a fine-grit sand paper (around 180 grit) and see how you like the results. Remember, the higher the number, the finer the sandpaper! If you use sandpaper that’s too course, the distressing won’t look natural.
Try to concentrate your distressing to areas that would naturally get more wear and tear such as edges, corners, and any raised detailing. You can take off as much or as little paint as you like, there’s really no right or wrong! If you find you’ve removed more paint than you wanted to, just add a little bit more paint to that area, wait until it dries, then start again.
Use a dry, lint-free rag to remove the paint dust before you seal your piece with wax or Tough Coat.
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