Shabby chic furniture is also referred to as country furniture. This is furniture that appears worn or antique, and can be used as a unique focal piece within a room. Making furniture look shabby chic is a fun project, for the furniture doesn’t have to be painted or primed (unless you want to paint it). You can easily give furniture a worn look by using simple household items, or small hand-held tools.
Get creative with hand tools. First place newspaper down around your work area, to protect the floor from wood dust or chips. Most furniture that is made worn by hand is wood furniture, for it is easy to work on, and also looks aesthetically interesting with the shabby chic style. Some people like to work on newer pieces of wood furniture to make their furniture look antique. This is particularly useful if you do not want to buy antique furniture, but want the look. You can work on plastic or metal furniture by painting the furniture, and then running a cloth or other object through the paint before fully dry, to make an uneven pattern in the paint.
After newspaper is spread on the floor or work table, place the furniture piece you will be working on over the newspaper. Open a tool box and use the tools inside to bang, chip or scrape the surface of the wood, to give it a worn, shabby chic look. Be careful while working on the wood, so that the furniture remains intact. Aim to work on the top of the furniture and not the legs, which is the support of the furniture. Wear protective gloves and eye goggles while working on furniture.
Try sanding the surface of wood furniture that is painted or glazed, either using an electric sander, or 220 grit sandpaper. Don’t sand the entire surface, simply sand in spots, to give the appearance of worn furniture. Remove wood dust with a tack cloth.
Take a sharp tool and use it to create indentations in the top part of tables, wood trunks or storage cases–wherever you want a worn look in a large space. Don’t make the indentations go all the way through, simply chip away at the surface, so that the piece is damaged slightly, but not ruined.
Take paint primer, and paint furniture once the wood chips and dust are removed. Let the primer dry, and apply a nice white coating of latex paint. Let dry, and apply a second coat for a thicker look. The paint will dry over the worn spots, and give a classic shabby-chic look to any piece of furniture. Shabby chic furniture goes well with most design themes; from French to American country.
What you will need:
Protective eye goggles
220 grit sandpaper
Clean paint brushes