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How To Antique a Cabinet

Follow these steps to make a cabinet look old again.

More in Decorating

sanding edges of cabinet gives worn look
  • Time

    Weekend

  • Price Range

    $50 - $100

  • Difficulty

    Moderate

Highlights:

Step 1: Paint a Base Coat

Remove any knobs and handles from the cabinet. Apply a base coat of green satin latex to the cabinet exterior (if you wish, you can go back later and use one of the wall colors on the interior). Let dry. (Don't worry if the color seems too bright -- the glaze will tone it down.)

Step 2: Add the Glaze

Apply a thin coat of smoky glaze, using a bristle brush for added texture. If you wish, you may let the glaze concentrate slightly in the corners for an added effect of age.

thin coat of glaze added cabinet for texture

Step 3: Sand the Piece

Once the glaze has dried completely, sand lightly with 100-grit sandpaper, working in the same direction as the brushstrokes. This will help to blend any lines. The more pressure you apply, the more glaze you will pull up. You may also wish to sand edges a little more in order to create the appearance of wear. Wipe the surface to remove any dust from the sanding.

sand lightly with grit paper to blend any lines

Step 4: Apply the Wood Wax

Use cotton rags to apply wood wax to the entire painted surface. This will blend the lines and impart a slight sheen to the piece. When the wax is dry, buff the cabinet.

Step 5: Add Flecks of Paint

Thin the black acrylic paint with a small amount of water. Dip the end of a flat brush in the mixture and blot on paper towels or rags to remove most of it. Use the handle of an artist's brush to flick the bristles of the larger brush, splattering tiny drops on black on the cabinet. After the paint is dry, replace the hardware, either with the original pieces or with new ones that coordinate with your new kitchen.

flick bristles of brush to splatter black paint

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