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Tuesday French Country Thrifting

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Thrift Store Lamps - pretty ugly and outdated right?

Thrift Store Made over Lamps - some of the same lamps made gorgeous!

I'm so excited to be here today to talk about one of my favorite things - thrift shopping and second, making new decor for your home.

Today we're going to talk about refinished thrift store lamps to become part of your decor. Then we'll talk about making new lamp shades to fit them, or any other lamp you may have that needs a shade. So let's start.

First, I'd like to talk about hand painting your lamp(s) and the reason for this, is because your actually painting it by hand rather than just spray painting them.

When you paint something by hand, you have complete control over the paint. You can layer it, apply different antiquing techniques to it and also applying different distressing techniques to it.

Spray painting is perfectly fine, in fact I went through a long period where everything got spray painted because it's fast with a flawless finish. However I've gone back to painting things the good old fashion way - with a paint brush.

Lampe Makeover Using Chalk Paint

Do you remember all that talk about appliques and how to use them? Well this is another project where they can really work their magic. Now depending on the style of your lamp, you could use just flat wood appliques, or you could use one's that bend.

Here's a larger applique. The reason for me showing this to you is that with any wood appliques, you can cut them very careful to remove just the piece you want, then you have the remainder of it to use on other projects. So here, I would cut off around the leaves on the sides - leaving just the rosettes with a few leaves. To do this, use a saw with a very fine blade to hand cut them.

Step 1. Glue on your appliques to your lamp using wood glue if your lamp is made of wood, or epoxy if your lamp is made of another material - like resin or metal.

Step 2. After allowing your appliques to dry thoroughly - after a few hours, now you can begin to paint. Now you can paint this in a simple latex paint in your choice of color, or you could make chalk paint in your choice of color. Use a sponge brush for painting. You most likely will need to do two coats.

How to Make Chalk Paint

Chalk paint is a textured paint because of the Plaster of Paris. It's also a very thick paint. However the finish is just as durable as a piece painted with latex paint.

If you'd like to replicate one of Annie Sloan's paints see above, simply make your Chalk Paint and add the color you'd like to the mixture. Using acrylic 2 oz. bottles is very affordable to make your chalk paint.

  • 2 oz. bottle of Acrylic Paint in your choice of color
  • Disposable bowl (Thrifty tip: I save old coffee canisters for painting projects!)
  • Stirring stick
  • Sponge brush
  • Sandpaper (When chalk painting, I prefer to use a fine grit sandpaper
  • Clear Spray Protector or Polyurethane

Step 1. 3 tablespoons Plaster of Paris ($6 for a large box and will last you a long time!)

Step 2. Add water to mix into the Plaster until it forms a smooth, creamy finish (it will be about 2-3 tablespoons)

Step 3. Next add in 1 cup white latex paint

Step 4. Begin with adding just a smidge of your color and mixing really well. Add a bit more if you'd like it darker.

Step 5. Lastly, mix until smooth and even

This measurement should be able to cover a small 3 drawer dresser or more depending how thick you paint it on.

Now the exciting part, begin painting your lamp. I like to start at the top and work my way down to the bottom. The nice thing about using a sponge brush is that your not going to have brush marks. However, it's important to go back over the lines created by the sides of the sponge brush. Don't worry about removing paint when doing this, because more than likely - you'll need to do a second coat.

The great thing about chalk paint is that it sticks so well you do not need to sand the furniture before using it! This is a huge plus if you are doing a large piece of furniture. Regardless of sanding or not, you do want to always take a damp rag and wipe it clean before painting.

This is it folks! How easy and inexpensive is this?

Lamp Makeover using Spray Paint

Spray painting is a method used is your planning on having only one color on your lamp. Done properly, you have a flawless finish.

This is a project that literally takes 10 minutes or less to do for the first coat.

While prepping your lamp(s), make sure you cover the top with newspaper and tape.

The Proper Way to Spray Paint

If painting on a table, lay down wax paper. If painting on a piece of cardboard, also lay down wax paper. Shake your can really - really well, for a good 1 minute.

Starting at the top of the lamp, take your can - hold down the button and begin painting off into the air not on anything, than drag it across your lamp and release the button off into the air.

Now do the same thing right underneath where you just painted and continue doing this all the way to the bottom.

Work on one side at a time - going from top to bottom, overlapping each area.

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