I have a suspicion. On several of these "quickie makeover" shows
(Trading Spaces, etc.) the "cast" is frequently seen painting
furniture, usually with small foam rollers or brushes. They paint old
furniture as well as custom MDF or plywood pieces.
Is there any chance that this results in a decent looking finish? I
strongly suspect that what may look OK on TV, in a quick camera pan
around the room, looks pretty ugly in person. As far as I can tell,
they are using wall paint most of the time.
Doesn't a good furniture paint finish require a professional sprayer,
low dust, special paint and perhaps SKILL?
I shudder when I see some of the things they do, although the shows are
kinda fun to watch. I have good furniture and some antiques. I would
kill anyone who did that in my house. Not to mention what they do to
some of the room surfaces that would take considerable effort to reverse,
such as feathers or paper bags glued on the walls.
I guess the only safe way to participate in one of these shows is to have
nothing of substance or value, or simply not care. I think they have to
sign a contract to the effect that almost anything goes.
Wayne in Phoenix
If there's a nit to pick, some nitwit will pick it.
What most of these shows do is have you remove from the room in question
anything you don't want touched. Some of the more notorious problems
have resulted from incomplete homeowner instructions -- there was a
glorious old mantelpiece that was cut out with a chainsaw in one show,
simply because the owners hadn't considered anybody would actually mess
with the structure itself.
As for the end results not being pleasing, keep in mind that the shows
get most of their interest from created drama. That is to say, the
"best" shows, from a viewership standpoint, are the ones where the
makeover causes some sort of anguish or regret.
If you want to stay friends with someone, don't makeover their house on
a TV show (or vice versa).
No. The foam rollers do a very good job of applying the paint,
especially on flat and smooth surfaces such as the MDF. Backbrushing
can remove roller patterns easily. And virtually none of your antique
furniture had finishes applied by sprayer.
This also depends on the look you want. Hand rubbed lacquer is
different from a paint wash treatment which is different from a stain
and linseed oil finish.
And remember, the furniture cost a couple hundred bucks, not ten
grand. You get what you pay for.
Let me put a little finer point on it. I'm not talking about when they
do a "wood finish". It's the painted furniture I'm curious about. It
seems to me that even cheap "store bought" painted furniture has a
smoother finish than could possibly result from rolled-on wall paint.
Last year I built a "temporary" desk/study area for my wife, who is
studying for the CPA exams. I had a couple of shelf units that I had
built a few years ago and I put a large piece of MDF on top as a desk
surface. I decided to paint it, mostly just to make it a cleanable
surface. I also thought it would be an interesting experiment. I used
black high gloss paint from HD and applied it with a foam roller
labeled "extra smooth".
On the positive side, the surface is amazingly tough. I can't even put
a mark in it with my fingernail. But it doesn't look so hot. It's got
a "texture" to it, plus you can see the roller marks. I'm sure that
flat paint would be much more uniform looking, but I don't think it
would be practical, or very attractive. Satin might be OK, but I have
that on some of my walls, and it just doesn't look like a "furniture"
Last night I happened to catch the end of another TV show where they
were showing the results of the makeover. They had made an armoire and
painted it brown. They happened to show a closer than usual shot with
a reflection highlight in it. It looked exactly the way you might
imagine furniture painted with satin wall paint would look.
By the way. The "temporary" desk is still there. I may formica it.
i used to work at a tv station and they did a make over for the news
broadcast.... when they were finished it looked like on TV that they had
bought all new counter tops make of mahognoy or walnut wood... looked
great.. it was all made up of cheap 1/8 in. plywood and particle board
stuff that was painted with a faux finish that they made up themselves..
on camera it looked real expensive and geat.. in person you could see it
was just junk...alot of cardboard in the background with glitter and
such for a street scene.... looked real.. these guys are real artist to
do the job they did but not in my house.... its only for looks...
Not really. I refinished our dining room table using a sander, some spray
paint, and a top coat of satin finish urethane. I got the exact look I was
aiming for, and it is holding up just as well as the original finish.
I wouldn't do this sort of thing with a valuable anitque, but I probably
wouldn't refinish one of those anyway.
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