Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Vintage Knick-Knack Painting Tips for the Impatient Crafter


Painting vintage knick-knacks and other thrifted finds is a hot new trend. I typically like the original vintage colors, but a fresh coat of paint revitalizes a find. It comes in handy if you want to cover chips or for selling an item that's been sitting on the shelves for too long.

Here are tips for painting vintage knick-knacks for the impatient bastard crafter!:

1. Use spray paint. Pick any brand, but use a primer.

Any brand of spray paint you use will do the trick, just make sure you apply a nice solid white base coat to help the colors pop and prevent and bleed-through of the original color.

2. I skip the sanding, so should you!

What can I say, I'm an impatient crafter. I'm not going to sit around sanding knick-knacks for hours. Primer usually does the trick.

3. Be mindful of the colors you choose.

Some colors like yellow and light green can be a nightmare. They apply thinly and take multiple coats to come out right. If you're impatient like me, choose bold vibrant colors which are usually a thicker consistency.

Painting vintage is less daunting than it may seem. It's cheap, fun, and easy. What I love about painting thrifted finds is that there's no guilty if you mess it up, you can't "make mistakes" with cheap or free finds! Experiment with your thrift finds and see what works for you!


How do you paint your vintage finds? What do you like better, painted or un-painted scores?
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20 comments:

  1. Oh, no! Tell me this isn't a trend..... But if it is, your tips should be very helpful :)

    I have a lamb like that. It never entered my mind to paint it!

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    1. I couldn't sell the lamb as it was for ages- we'll see how it does painted!

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  2. Van - I agree! The second new antique mall that I am in has way more Dealers with re-purposed furniture and spray painted doodads. These items are flying out the door! {On the flip side, the other antique mall that I am also in, has less re-purposed stuff...mostly brown furniture and tons of dishware}...

    I usually spray paint anything that was gold with off-white, pink, or blue. I hadn't thought of BOLD colors, but I like this idea and will give it a try! I LOVE spray painting stuff whenever I can! xo

    -pamela ;)

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    1. People LOVE pink, I bought a bright pepto-bismol like color that I'm going to use today on a Gargoyle and some unicorns :) It really does help some things fly off the shelves!

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  3. Sanding is a MUST! It roughs up the surface, allowing the paint and primer to hold on and stay there. Otherwise it will begin to crack and peel in very short order, especially if you're mixing paint types (oil and latex).

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    1. We haven't encountered problems with the "lazy" measures...yet. But I definitely see your point. I was going to write a follow-up post on the knick knacks with a glossy surface, we started using the "stone" textured spray paint, it adds a texture for the spray paint to adhere to and works really well at "roughing" it up without sanding.

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  4. This may have a nice backlash in a few years....items commonly painted will be more valuable in the future as rare unpainted pieces! Lol! For now, it's great that they are flying off the shelf!

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    1. I've thought about that, I wonder if they will be a big restoration trend where people use chemicals to strip the paint and bring back the natural item ;) ?

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  5. Hey hey!! I am finding that the natural wood look is not as popular as a wooden piece that's been painted. I have had a few things sit, and when I bring them home, paint them and take them back they SELL!! I hate investing the extra time (I'm all for the quick turnover), but I don't want to pass up on the investment and a possible sale. I have had great luck at my local HD oops paint department. Great buys for 50/cents most times. I pop in whenever I have an extra 10 minutes to check out what they have. Also Hobby Lobby has a great selection of colors and you can use a 40% off coupon.

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    1. Oh, I love the idea of using the Home Depot's paint flub section to score deals on nice colors. I haven't tried that yet. Michael's and Joanne's always have 20%/40%/50% off coupons online and in-papers, and sometimes they'll honor competitor's coupons.

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    2. Oh, forgot to mention, I'm surprised the original wood finish stuff doesn't sell well at first. I love delicious wood grain! To each their own...

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  6. well, I generally do not paint scores b/c I'm drawn to the original colors in the first place. That being said, i do like this trend and think using some of the textured paints (like the faux granite and such) could be neat, too

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    1. I used the faux granite on the sheep pictured in this post before spray painting to help paint adhere to the glossy surface. It adds a nice texture, too.

      Same here, I always put my items in with the original colors before painting them.

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  7. I'm all for the trend! The painted trend has yet to catch on where I live.

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    1. You could be the first to usher in the trend in your area! It's nice to be a trend setter!

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  8. I LOVE the way your two items look up there. Ever since your white owl, I've been meaning to give it a try myself! I have a few ideas rolling around in my (already swimming) noggin.

    "I'm not going to sit around sanding knick-knacks for hours..."
    Laughing my ass off.
    Me neither!

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    1. Try it, Chantal. It's addictive ;)

      Hey, I did the lazy guide for a reason, some of us are slow crafters. I'll do a detailed guide to follow-up, though.

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  9. Hi Vanessa,
    I just realized I won the photography giveaway I am so exited. Thank You
    Barbara

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    1. You should be getting an e-mail soon. :)

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  10. I love how you update these vintage finds with a coat of spray paint. I would really like to have you share this tip at Restyled Sundays.

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I love reading your comments. Thank you for adding to the discussion! I always reply to any and all questions.

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