Use Vaseline to distress furniture and create a layered paint finish. The technique is super easy.
Furniture distressed is furniture with character. My new saying! And I’ve gotten in front of the camera to do videos finally. At the bottom of this post is a great video on how to use Vaseline to layer and distress paint. It’s a must see.
You guys know I love bright, bold colors. Well, this project includes two bold colors. The two colors Vaseline sandwiched between them. The trick is getting the right amount of Vaseline between the layers.
Turquoise Furniture Finish Layered With Green
What a fun color combination. And those green knobs!
I got this piece at the Nashville Flea Market . It’s a sewing cabinet and it still had the sewing machine inside…minus electric cord and foot pedal. The JTS removed the machine for me and I started painting. I’m lucky to have the JTS. He does so much of the prep work on my furniture projects.
Use Vaseline To Distress Furniture
The paint girl at Lowes mixed some custom paint for me. wow Love that bright green! I applied two coats of paint and moved on to the next step once the green paint was dry.
I pulled on a pair of latex gloves and put a thin layer of Vaseline on areas of the table. Then I painted on a layer of turquoise paint.
As soon as the turquoise paint was dry I used a shop towel…those that come in the can and have a cleaning product on them….and started wiping off turquoise paint. I either didn’t rub on enough Vaseline or that paint is good stuff because I had to rub and rub to get that paint off.
The reason for using the wet distress technique is to keep from removing the paint down to the original furniture finish. If you want to use sandpaper start out with something like 220 grit and see how that works.
Here’s how it looked after the wet distressing. I bought the knobs at Hobby Lobby but they weren’t doing it for me…not bright enough…not much of a statement. I’ve used these knobs on a piece before and I love them but not for this table.
I grabbed some white porcelain knobs from my stash and this Krylon spray paint. The paint has been in my workshop for several years. I bought it at a thrift store and it was in a package with a can of silver paint.
The name on the paint is holiday green. I’m sure they don’t make it anymore but I wish they did. It’s the brightest, shiniest, prettiest green. The photos don’t do it justice.
When I started putting the knobs on the table I noticed one of the knobs was missing the screw threads inside……it’s always something! I found 4 more porcelain knobs with the swirl design and I painted them. See how shiny the top three are? The others have the same sheen but they were still wet when I took this photo.
Turquoise and green are one of my favorite color combinations.
Furniture with details are the best for distressing the paint. The details really pop!
It’s been cloudy and rainy here for days.I took photos of the table inside but when the sun popped out for 30 minutes yesterday me and the JTS hauled the table outside and I started taking photos.
What did I learn from this project? The amount of Vaseline applied between the layers of paint is key. I’ve had projects before where I applied too much Vaseline and when I brushed on the second layer of paint I had a gooey mess. Too little and like this project the top layer of paint is almost impossible to distress.
Sure I could use sandpaper but that might take off all layers of paint down to the original finish. So the takeaway is it’s a bit of trial and error and learning experience. I finally found the right mix. I made a video tutorial you can find at the bottom of this post!
Video Tutorial on how to use Vaseline to distress furniture…..
Use Vaseline To Distress Furniture
I have another tutorial where I used Vaseline to distress the paint on a side table. It is so pretty see the side table/nightstand here…..Layering Paint Using Vaseline.
Check out my first Vaseline distressed project, it’s a doozy……Red And Turquoise Stenciled Chest.
As always thanks for being here and have a great day, Kathy
This project first appeared on Petticoat Junktion in 2014. It has been updated with new info and photos. If you missed the project the first time around I hope you enjoyed the tutorial.
Author: Kathy Owen
Kathy Owen is the founder of the home decor blog Petticoat Junktion where she shares tutorials on painting furniture and upcycling thrifty finds into unique home décor. Her DIY projects have been featured on the Home Depot Blog, Plaid Crafts, Behr Designer Series, and in numerous magazines. Kathy’s newest website is HappyHomeDIY.com