On this episode of Finish Friday, DIY expert Amy Howard shares all about a unique way to use Venetian Plaster — on your walls! Venetian Plaster comes to us from ancient times, but in this modern day era, the possibilities are truly endless for this lovely material. Easy to work with and highly textured, Venetian Plaster is perfect for creating an organic, natural look in your home.
Marble is a gorgeous stone that exudes classical elegance, but it can cost a fortune. Marbleizing is a skillful technique you can use to create a faux marble finish that takes any piece to the next level. You can do marbleize a variety of surfaces, like ceramic tile, Formica countertops, kitchen cabinets, backsplash wood, linoleum, and more. To get a classic, chic, faux-Carrara marble effect in your own home or for your furniture refinishing project, follow this week’s Finish Friday video. In it, Amy walks you through how to use her perfected marbling technique.
Here at Amy Howard at Home, we pride ourselves on creating top-notch products that are versatile, easy to use, and safe. Of course, one of our all-time best-selling products is our line of One Step Paint™. One Step Paint can transform furniture and décor with the stroke of a brush.
Have you ever seen a beautiful piece of wood furniture that just screamed for some TLC? Amy is showing you just how to rescue and restore those pieces this week on Finish Friday. In this video, she shows you how to use Toscana Milk Paint, Antiquing Glaze, and wax to pull out the rich wood grains while giving your furniture or accents a beautiful pop of color that looks vintage, chic, and oh-so-gorgeous.
Gilding is an easy, quick way to give new life to your hardware, whether it’s on a dresser, cabinets, or a decorative piece with knobs or knockers. To make sure you apply the gilding properly and seal it for use, we at Amy Howard at Home are sharing a quick and easy gilded hardware tutorial.
“Faux” means to fool the eye, and thanks to Amy’s 30+ years in the furniture and refinishing world, she has perfected the art of the faux finish — including faux tortoise shell finishes. For centuries, people have used small slivers of tortoise shells to decorate a variety of surfaces, from boxes to chests of drawers to tables and more. Of course, this isn’t a sustainable practice and the beautiful hawksbill turtles who were famous for their beautiful shells are now on the endangered species list. It’s been illegal to sell tortoise shells since the ‘90s, which is why faux finishes have become so popular.
Did you know that the average patio set sells for about $800? That’s crazy! What’s even crazier is that we as Americans dump over 28 million tons of furniture — and some of that is patio furniture. Instead of throwing out your old, worn-down, sunbleached or mildewed set, you can actually rescue and restore it. Check out our Before photo - hard to believe, right?
This week on Finish Friday, Amy Howard walks you through how to paint patio cushions with One Step Paint, as well as how to seal your cushions and furniture so they can withstand the elements, your next barbeque, or your kids’ popsicles. This week’s video is really going to make a difference in how you use your outdoor furniture, so check it out.
Tools You Need to Paint Your Patio Furniture Cushions
Are you already looking at your outdoor cushions and chairs, daydreaming about how you can make them beautiful once again? Our Outdoor Furniture Bundle will help you get started on your own outdoor fabric and furniture project, so make sure to check that out.
You’ll also need a couple of synthetic brushes and, if you want, a complimentary One Step Paint color (or three!) to match your color scheme. You can also use Mind Your Own Beeswax to seal patio cushions if you prefer that! Once you’ve got all your materials, it’s time to get started.
Restoring Furniture Cushions and Furniture
First, you’ll need to use the Clean Slate to clean your cushions and/or furniture pieces as much as possible. It’s okay if you don’t get it all, and it’s also fine if there are still some stains or discoloration from sun bleaching and dirt. We just want to get up the majority of the gunk before we start painting.
Once your Clean Slate has dried (about 15-20 minutes), you can get ready to paint. Because cushions are fabric, you’ll need to water down your One Step Paint: scoop out a bit of paint into a bowl and water it down to 20% paint/water ratio. Then, dip your synthetic brush in the thinned paint and start applying it to your cushion or furniture. Work in long, clean strokes, making sure to go the same direction and work with a wet edge. Don’t try to put it on too thick, either. As Amy says in the video, it’s okay to not have complete coverage; you’ll come back and do a second coat. Once your first coat is done, set it aside to dry. It will dry kind of rough, so you will need to sand between coats with 220 sandpaper. Of course, Amy mentions, make sure to sand in the same direction that you painted.
To protect the painted finish, you can use Matte Sealer or Mind Your Beeswax. If you use beeswax, just shake it up and apply it with a lint-free rag, rubbing it evenly across your entire cushion. If you want a more hardy sealant, the Matte Sealer is great. It’s water-based, VOC-free, and you can apply it with a synthetic brush. Amy explains that, as you do with the One Step Paint, it’s important to keep a wet edge and apply the sealer with long, clean strokes. Don’t leave it in the direct sunlight, as that will cause it to dry too quickly.
If you want to add a design or accent to your pillow, tape off the area with painters tape. Make sure to cover piping or anywhere you may paint that you don’t intend to. This way, you get a clean edge that looks 100% professional.
Beautify Your Outdoor Space With More Restoration Ideas
While Amy shows you how to paint outdoor cushions in the video, she also gives you a few tips when you start painting your outdoor furniture, as well. Make sure to check out the video if you want to learn from Amy directly as she gives new life to an old and dingy patio cushion. Then, tune in next Friday at 12 noon Central for another segment of Finish Friday. You can Follow and Like the Amy Howard at Home Facebook page to get notified when she goes live!
You can also join the Before and After Amy Howard at Home group to get inspired by other DIYers who use Amy Howard at Home products. This group is a treasure trove of rescue and restore ideas, so make sure to join!
Do you have a few clay pots around the house or that you’ve rescued from garage sales? Or maybe you bought one too many for your garden at the hardware store? In this week’s Finish Friday video, Amy demonstrates how to make those clay pots extra special by aging and decorating them.
See how Amy makes her terracotta pots look straight out of a vintage store by watching this week’s Finish Friday video:
What You Need for Aging Terracotta Pots
To age your own terracotta pots like Amy does in the video, you’ll need items from these items:
You’ll also need to know Amy’s techniques, which make all the difference! (Make sure to watch the video if you want to get the full tutorial.)
How to Properly Age and Decorate Plant Pots
Prior to applying the sealer and antiquing glaze to your pots, you’ll paint them first with Toscana Milk Paint. In a mixing bowl, mix up your Toscana Milk Paint powder with room temperature tap water first, using a 1:1 ratio: one part water, one part paint.
Pro tip: Amy suggests adding a little water at a time while mixing with a spoon to get out the grit. Then, you can add more water bit by bit to thin out the consistency a little. Also remember that Amy Howard at Home’s line of milk paint doesn’t have chemicals like other products, which means you should be constantly stirring your mixed milk paint.
Applying Milk Paint to Your Pots
Now that your paint and tools are ready, you can decide how you’d like to paint your pots. In this week’s video, Amy demonstrates two different ways of painting: using a natural sea sponge, and using a flat paint chip brush that comes in the Age Your Terracotta Pot Bundle. If you choose to apply paint with the natural sea sponge, be sure to dampen it with water first so it’s pliable. Dip the underside of the sponge into your paint and blot it onto your pot.
If you choose to paint with a chip brush, apply your paint using quick, even strokes. Amy points out that with a brush, you may be able to see the brushstrokes, which you don’t with the natural sea sponge. However, both methods of painting will work if you use the right technique. Once your pot is completely painted, the milk paint will only take about 10 minutes to dry — just one of the great things about them. They’re organic, with no VOCs, and you can mix them to create your own colors.
Using Antiquing Glaze
Once your painted pots are dry, you’re ready to glaze. Pour a small amount in a mixing bowl. Keep a separate mixing bowl of tap water nearby. You’ll need this bowl of water to clean off your natural sea sponge between applications.
Soak your sea sponge in the glaze, wring it out, and dab it onto the surface of your pot. Some paint will come off on the sponge, which is okay! Rinse your sponge in the bowl of water so that you don’t transfer paint back into your bowl of glaze. Apply your glaze to the entire pot fairly quickly and let it saturate for a few minutes. For your second coat of glaze, use a little more pressure to lift off more paint and make it look even more textured and aged. If you take off too much, or you’re applying more than one paint color, you can apply more Toscana Milk Paint and repeat the process.
Amy also demonstrates how to add a unique design to your painted and antiqued pot — a technique you’ll definitely want to learn! And with a reusable, adhesive stencil from A Makers’ Studio, Amy’s sister company, you can easily customize your pots even further.
Finishing With a Sealer
After you’re happy with how your pot looks, it’s time to finish it off with a sealer. Using Matte Sealer will protect your pot from getting wet, either from the weather or when you water your plants and flowers.
To seal your pot properly, pour a small amount of Matte Sealer into a mixing bowl. Load up a clean chip brush with sealer and apply it quickly to the inside and outside of your pot. The sealer looks white, but it will dry down to a matte finish in about 10 minutes. Once dry to the touch, your pot is ready to go!
Create a Beautiful Space With Aged Terracotta
With summer fast approaching, now is the perfect time to add beautiful pots of flowers or herbs to your home. You might create these aged clay pots to add to your kitchen windowsill as Amy does, display them outside on your back patio, or add them to your front porch. And the great thing about terracotta is, the older it gets, the more beautiful it looks.
Want more projects like this one? Catch next week’s Finish Friday for more insight into Amy’s projects, tips, and tricks! Follow and “Like” our Facebook page so you don’t miss out. Finish Friday goes live every Friday at 12 noon Central.
If you want to add a layered, textured look to furniture or accent décor, glaze can help you achieve it. Whether you call it “boho chic” or simply “glazing” as Amy Howard does, this technique is a definite must-have in your DIY repertoire. Follow along with Amy in this free Finish Friday video to learn professional techniques for glazing your furniture.