The Noobie Guide to Frenchic Paints

Many of you may know that we have been painting some of our stuff with Frenchic furniture paints! I really had fun with those  paints and since we are also retailing them in store, I have did a little tutorial for those who have not tried any mineral paints previously (yes, me, who is a total noobie in painting, of all people, is going to teach you how to use it)
Step 1: Find a “terrible looking” table 
I really had plenty of options for my “terrible looking” table. Actually they are not terrible looking per-se, just that its condition had left them deeply scarred and unwanted. Since I have the access to these items, I have picked a really bad piece to see what potential can the paint do. At home, you can also spruce up your own items such as trays, picture frames, bedside tables and even lampshades. It can be quite addictive after you started to paint 1!

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Step 2: Sand down any uneven edges or surface
For this table, it really had many deep scratches and even a chipped corner. I use a sand paper (no. 150) to sand down its corner to prepare it.

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Step 3: Wipe down any wood dust
At Hock Siong, it is really dusty! After sanding down, I wiped the table clean and free from any dust or wood dust (that came from sanding down). This is so that the surface will not trap any dust when I paint. For that, I am really thankful we have recycled rags that makes cleaning an ease!

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My choice of paint – Banana Split
THANKS TO EMMA! 🙂
The paint actually smells like Play-Doh. Which I thought it is great to involve kids in painting their own furniture as firstly, they do not smell pungent, and secondly they are non-toxic.

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Before painting, prepare a little cup of water for you to dip the tip of the paint brush.
I did not mix the paint with water, instead I dipped the tip of the paint brush before painting so that the strokes will be smoother. I also dipped the paint brush in the water when I feel the strokes are getting harder to “pull”.

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Step 4: Just Paint 
Go in a single direction stroke…..

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Don’t worry…..and just have fun! 

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As that day of painting was really hot and I was doing it in an outdoor area, the paint dried really fast! After painting its 1st coat, I left it for 20-30 mins to dry, and painted its 2nd coat.
When the paint is drying, remember to soak your paint brush in water! 

For this table, I painted a total of 3 coats (but 2 coats is the typical range).  After its last coat, I left it to dry completely for more than 1.5 hour before I can distress it.

It is important for the table to dry completely before distressing.

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A mirror-selfie while I was preparing the wax.
(This is my brother’s old D&T apron)
Remember your apron should be the first step! :p

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I sanded down all its edges on the legs and table top and random areas on the table top with sandpaper (no.150) to make it look distressed and worn. I have painted 3 coats, and boy, was it thick!  I spent some time to do heavy distressing. We were unable to create distressed looking furniture at our paint workshop previously, but with this paint, I am happy we can do it now! 🙂

Step 5: Prepare your wax
Remember to wipe down your item after you distress and before you wax. Wax gives a layer of protection to the item and since wax makes the item water resistant and this is a side table that will probably have a high usage, I definitely have to wax it. I chose the clear wax but there are white and rustic waxes available too!

The wax takes about 1 to 1.5 hours to dry but it is really easy to apply. It’s consistency is like… butter?Just make sure the table is covered with wax and you are good to go 🙂

EDIT: 1 week after painting and waxing the side table, I realised there are dust stains on the side table. They are most likely to be caused by the wax, having not “cured” completely. From the people of Frenchic, it is recommended that the table is left for 2-3 weeks so that the wax can be cured completely. You may wish to take note of this! 🙂

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After using the furniture paints, I have decided:

Pros:
– Toy safe and environmental friendly (they are good for baby room and nurseries)
– Easy to use and great coverage
– Very easy to clean : just wash the brush with tap water!
– I thought it is a very therapeutic activity!
– Great for starters who want to do their own DIY up-cycling projects
– No pungent solvent/enamel paint smells

Cons:
– It is not for those who wants to achieve a perfectly smooth and flawless surface
– The paint may drip so you will need to clean up, but thats your little project as compared to something that is store bought!
– Cost slightly higher than enamel/solvent paints
– If you are using wax, you may need to take 2-3 weeks for the wax to cure completely, and need to leave it in a place free of dust!

Share with me on what you think about the paint by emailing to at [email protected] 🙂 I look forward to seeing your projects too!