Friday, February 4, 2011

Spray Paint 101

Spray painting is the technique we utilize most on our furniture re-do’s. I thought I’d take this opportunity to share what works and what doesn’t:


Why Spray Paint? 
Why we choose to use spray paint:
First because, as inexperienced wanna-be furniture rehabbers, I contacted Kathy at Creative Home Expressions who shared tips with us.  Second, through trial and error, we found that spray gave the most even coverage (if applied correctly) while brushing almost always leaves brush marks. It is our opinion that spray paint provides a more professional finish. Additionally, spray painting takes much less time.  Note: At this time we do use spray cans. Although we have a sprayer, we haven’t yet done a large piece (this is forthcoming as I have been getting some GREAT deals!), therefore we have yet to pull this out and practice.

Cost Effective: 
It is our opinion that spraying is much more cost effective than brushing because of the time involved as well as how much paint it would take to brush and try not to leave marks.

Our Choice Of Paint: We ONLY use Valspar spray paints. Even without a clear coat their paint coverage and finished look is amazing! Never, ever buy the el-cheapo cans. You will get what you pay for.

High Gloss, Semi-Gloss & Flat:
It depends on your project but we generally choose semi-gloss. This is the look we like and we also find it more durable with children.

Prime, Prime, Everywhere a Prime: Do we prime? Yes! You will get better coverage and better overall results.

Sand?Yes, we always do at least a minimum sanding. By this I mean we lightly rough up the surface to give the primer somewhere to stick. We use 220 grit sandpaper. If you don’t sand, you run the risk of peeling and not sticking.

Color Choices:
This is an individual choice, but for use we like: White Ivory, Black, Blue, and Gray. They also have better coverage.

Paint runs:To avoid runs in your spray paint, apply thin coats of the spray paint. Spraying too much on will cause the paint to run. Next time we paint, we hope to do a video tutorial showing our technique.  If we do get a run in the paint, we lightly sand that spot and paint another coat.

Where to spray? We spray in a workroom and have sprayed in the garage. Doing your painting inside allows you to control your environment (temperature, etc). We cover our spray area in plastic to prevent overspray on other areas.  Sometimes there is still some overspray. Please keep that in mind when you start spraying.

Do you spray outside?
Hardly ever and it is from personal experience we no longer do this. There are two main reasons: First,  we did so and it was ruined due to sun and heat. It caused the paint to bubble. We had to sand it all down and start from scratch. Time and money waster. The other reason is the bugs. We can get a piece finished and see where a bug flew in. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to see a painted bug carcass in my work. 

Other Tips:
Spray in a well ventilated area or wear a mask.
Buy quality paint!

Step by step

It's easy to create a beautiful, durable finish. All you need to do is follow these simple steps.
Note that some projects will require even fewer steps - not all objects will require sanding and priming.

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