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7 Steps To Achieve An 18th Century Finish

7 Steps To Achieve An 18th Century Finish

, by Michelle Stevens, 5 min reading time

Have you ever wanted to quickly and easily create 18th century finishes?

In this tutorial, Amy Howard is going to walk you through the creation process in 7 simple steps.


This is one of the finishes we have been asked to show multiple times in our Amy Howard At Home Before And After Group. 


This specific finish is completed using a combination of Venetian plaster and Toscana milk paint.


Amy’s Tip: Always practice your finish on a sample piece of trim that you can find on our website or a worn piece of furniture from Habitat for Humanity or Goodwill.


STEP 1: Always make sure to clean your piece with Clean Slate before starting on your finish.

The reason we use our Clean Slate is because if the piece is older, it could have liquid gold or old wax still on it that most other cleaners will not remove. 


STEP 2: After cleaning your piece, you will want to apply a base coat of our One-Step Paint.


Even on melamine, we will not want to start with our Venetian plaster, because it will not bond properly, this is why we start with One-Step Paint.


We recommend using Bauhaus buff One-Step Paint because it is the closest color to our Venetian plaster. 


STEP 3: Begin mixing your Amy Howard At Home Venetian plaster.

You will mix it one part Plaster powder and one part water. I always like to say you want it the consistency of sour cream. 


Make sure and start with warm water, typically around room temperature so it mixes smoothly. 


STEP 4: Apply your Venetian Plaster.


When applying your plaster, it is best to use our Amy Howard At Home Chip Brushes. You will want to use a chip brush because the bristles are much thicker than the synthetic brush you will use to apply the One-Step Paint. 


The Venetian Plaster is water based and will easily wash off your hands after your project. 


Amy’s Tip: Be sure to mix your Milk Paint and Venetian plaster the night before your project. You will make sure and keep your plaster in an airtight container after mixing. 


STEP 5: Mix your Toscana Milk Paint. Remember to use warm water and mix one part Toscana Milk Paint to one part water. 


You will want to make sure there is no foam before painting, if you have foam, you can use a cheesecloth to strain your milk paint before applying. Make sure to mix your Toscana Milk Paint thoroughly so there are no lumps. 


Your Toscana Milk Paint will be good for up to 2 weeks after you mix it. It will be best to also keep your mixed milk paint in a lock tight container. 


Always make sure to agitate your brush at the bottom of your milk paint container, do not paint directly from the top of your mix. 


When applying your Toscana Milk Paint, you will want to paint in sections at a time and not all at once. If you are doing a chest of drawers, you will want to take the drawers out and complete one at a time. 


Amy’s Tip: Take a paper towel and dab on top of your wet milk paint to pull through the plaster. (example show at 17:35 of the video)


STEP 6: Directly after applying your Toscana Milk Paint, begin applying the Amy Howard At Home Antiquing Glaze with a natural sponge.


This will allow more of your Venetian plaster to come through and give your the appearance of a piece that has come from the 18th century. 


Amy’s Tip: Use the paper towel as your negative tool and the sponge as your positive tool (example shown at 19:49 of the video).  


STEP 7: After drying for 5-10 minutes you will come back and begin applying your waxes.

You will need to wax your entire piece with an Amy Howard At Home Hog Hair Brush to insure you seal your piece. 


Now it’s your turn to go and enjoy the bragging rights! 


Be sure and tune in next Finish Friday on The Amy Howard At Home Facebook Page


Amy’s Tip: If this finish is going to be used outdoors, you will want to make sure and seal your finish after.

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