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Tips + Tricks: Painting An Antique

By 2:46 PM , , , ,

Painting furniture seems to be the craze these days--but before you grab a brush, do you know when it's not okay to paint?

1. Never paint furniture that is handcrafted, no matter what the age. To retain its value, your furniture should always be kept in the original finish of the craftsman.
2. Many antique pieces (ones 100+ years old) are manufactured. It's perfectly acceptable to paint those pieces unless they were painted at the time they were made or were painted shortly after they were manufactured. Original old paint is highly prized. If the color is beautiful and the paint is aged appropriately, I would never paint it.

These tips apply to smaller pieces, accessories and architectural fragments as well.


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  1. Kim & David, you mentioned that it's never a good idea to paint over an original "hand-crafted" antique piece of furniture; would there ever be an exception? My mother-in-law loves to shop for antiques, especially furniture. She found a great looking desk & wants to give it to my wife and I. It's a great looking piece, but has lots of splinters & cracks. I would love to keep it, but right now, it's not useable. Any thoughts? Thanks, http://www.crissy.com