Sometimes you just really want a piece of furniture to shine – literally! Painting furniture with metallic paint is a great way to do this. This week we tried Cottage Paint’s Urban Paint (soon to be renamed Metallics), to paint a vintage Strathroy Furniture Company cabinet. Below we share with you all the details on how to paint furniture with metallic paint.
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This cabinet is just the type of furniture we love to paint! It is very well made by a reputable Canadian furniture manufacturer but very dated and unappealing in its current state. Whenever we can score pieces like this for under $10 I do a little happy dance because I just know we can make them beautiful again!
Many paint companies offer a line of metallic paints, making it really easy to get the super cool metallic-look finish on your furniture. What we really love about the Cottage Paint line is that it is a hybrid emulsion made from water and plant oil that is environmentally friendly and low VOC. Translation: you don’t need harsh chemicals to get the metal look AND it’s safe for people and the planet!
We chose the color “steel blue” for this project because, well, it’s me and I love blue! It was a hard choice because I also love the Ivory and Gold colors but those will have to wait for another day.
Step 1 – clean and prep
As with any furniture painting project, you must clean and properly prepare your piece. We used Cottage Paint’s Clean and Prep to quickly wipe down the piece and then gave it a light sand with 220-grit sandpaper.
Pro tip! Use tack cloth to make sure there is no sanding residue left on your piece before you start to paint. We used this brand.
Depending on the piece your working with, you may also want to use a primer to avoid any bleeding from the wood.
Step 2 – paint a base color
This is really the only “trick” to painting with metallics. To make sure your metallic finish is as rich as possible, you need to paint a similar color base coat in a non-metallic. We used Cottage Paint’s Peacock Blue clay chalk paint. You won’t see the base color but it will help the metallic look as vibrant as possible.
Denise from Salvaged Inspirations shared an excellent reader tip last week! If you are painting gold metallic, use a red base coat and for silver use a royal blue.
Cottage Paint also has the recommended base coat color for each of its 12 metallic shades on their website!
Step 3 – paint with metallics
You can apply the metallic paint with a brush or roller. Using a brush will give you slight striations that are actually consistent with real metals and enhance the metallic look. We opted for a roller and a more smooth finish. We only needed two coats to get a perfectly consistent and opaque finish.
The durability of Cottage Paint’s metallics is excellent so a top coat isn’t really needed. However, if you anticipate heavy use, say dishes sliding across the top on a regular basis, you can use a top coat for extra durability.
Optional step 4 – highlighting
To really bring out the features of the piece, we used Easy Glaze mixed with Carbon as a finish. We are big fans of using glaze to add extra richness and dimension to our pieces, which you can read more about here.
This sweet little Strathroy cabinet is now quite sassy! The Steel Blue metallic shimmer is just gorgeous! We painted the inside in Cottage White, added a beautiful floral paper to the inside of the drawer and updated the hardware to complete the transformation from dated to darling.
Painting furniture with metallic paint is really quite an easy and affordable way to create a big impact. What do you think of this makeover? Have you tried metallic paint? What is your favorite part of working with metallic paints? We’d love for you to comment below.