Tackled the Crackle!

We are soon to finish our new addition - a 2 story garage with an office, bathroom and guest room on the second level. The is tres exciting for me, as I do not usually have the delight of being able to design and decorate a room from scratch. It is also nice to not have to tape up all your trim to paint - you get to paint and then put the trim on!
So, I have been thinking alot about how I want to furnish and decorate the guest bedroom. After all, guest rooms are what your guests will see most closely and they epitomize your decorating sense and what you want to convey to your family and friends. I painted the room in Valspar's Superior Blue. With white trim and doors, it is quite an eye-popping blue (so much that during the construction phase, my dear husband to everyone he felt like he had to hold his breath in that room since he felt like he was under water), so I wanted white furniture in the room to help absorb the brightness of the blue. My problem was, we don't have any white furniture.
Furniture wasn't the problem, it was that I have to paint it or buy new furniture if I were to get what I wanted. I didn't want to paint good furniture that was either in very nice condition or had some antique value. But we happened to still have the not-so-valuable-or-pretty maple bedroom set that my husband and I bought for $100 when we moved to Vermont from college in 1997. Now I just worried that, if I painted it, it would look hideous.
So, instead of deciding to just paint it white, I decided to make my life much more difficult and try to do a faux finish. I wanted that old, worn antique look to go along with my intended beach theme in the room. So, I tried to look up some articles on doing a crackled or an distressed finish, not finding too much at all. The only thing I found that was of any help was Karon Goodman's article on using Valspar Weathered Crackle Glaze. This was good, as I had already taken a gander at this product on our last trip to Lowe's, so I decided I'd go for it. In hopes that I can help someone else who wants to do this, I will give my step-by-step process for success in the next post. But I will say that the end result was much better than I anticipated! For a first timer, that is always quite a feat!


Anonymous said...

Thanks for your blog about crackling. I recently tried to crackle a bedside table using the valspar crackle from Lowe's. The result was less than desirable. I had alot of clumping and slipping and after reading your blog learned a few pointers. My question is after applying this technique and wanting to start over do I need to resand the entire piece and start the process from the beginning or are there any shortcuts? Also can you thin the flat paint that is the topcoat for a more even layer of paint? The flat pain is so thick it is like trying to pain with pudding. Any help would be appreciated!

Anonymous said...

Hi Melissa,

I would recommend that you definitely sand all of the texture from the erred crackle technique off the furniture. It won't matter too much if you have the bottom layer on still, as long as the beginning surface for starting over is smooth and there is no residual crackle layer left. I also don't see why you could thin the base layer, but you have to make sure that is dries with a flat finish - this is important for the desired end result. You may want to ask at the paint store what is this thinnest flat paint you can buy instead of thinning it? Not sure. Good luck!!