So I painted our dining room table (see how it looked before here) with three coats of oil-based paint. I'm in love with the result! I also loved it before, but after almost three years of daily use, it was ready for either a fresh staining or a coat of paint, and I felt like the room could use a little more white now that we have the wood walls. So I just went for it!
1. Choose oil-based paint.
Both Laura and I have had an experience where we asked for a recommendation for what type of paint to use on a table and chairs at a home improvement store, and the person working there recommended using latex. Both projects were epic fails!
Do not use latex paint for furniture that needs to be wiped down often or will be heavily used. Laura's table (painted with latex) is very hard to clean and leaves wipe marks each time she wipes it down. The chairs I painted with latex started scuffing and rubbing off immediately.
This is the exact paint I used for this, my yellow chairs, my white piano and my bar cart.
Tips—Be aware that oil-based paint will take longer to dry and SMELLS. Try to open the windows if you are painting indoors. You can't wash your brush out in your sink like with latex paint, so you'll either need paint thinner or a throwaway brush for this project.
The only downside to oil-based paint is that you can't usually get the colors mixed, so you have to choose from what they have available (which is why all the projects listed above are white, yellow, and olive green).
2. Take your time.
Be sure you choose a time for this project when you can let your paint dry between coats and cure for at least a couple days before you start using your furniture again. Oil-based paint dries slowly, so these are not good one-day projects. i.e. Don't try this the night before a big party or event you are hosting!
3. Choose glossy finish.
In my experience the glossy finish looks the best when completed. That's what I used for this table and I really like it. Cleans up like a dream too!
4. Don't be afraid of pattern.
Just because you can't get this oil-based paint in a huge variety of colors doesn't mean you can't try patterns. Use black and white to create something customized for your style!
5. Keep a touch up can at home.
Even though this paint is super durable, any furniture that is used daily will eventually get chips or scratches. I always keep a touch up can hidden away in our laundry room for this reason, making it easy to keep pieces looking fresh for longer!
I love my painted table! It really brightened up our dining space. Thanks so much for reading! xx- Elsie
Credits// Author: Elsie Larson, Photography: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess Actions.