Vintage Distressed Furniture Tutorial

Looking for a HOT new DIY project for your furniture? Look no further! Distressing, antiquing, whatever you want to call it, has become the newest craze even in high end department stores. But why pay hundreds of dollars for furniture when you can make it yourself?!

I’ll admit I bought some gorgeous antique pieces of furniture two years ago from an antique resale store and yes I paid a couple of hundred for several pieces. Unfortunately, it was because I had very limited time to buy furniture before I moved, so I ended up buying it. Now that this has become so popular of a trend and I have more free time, I decided to do it myself for MUCH cheaper!

I have scoured the internet everywhere via Google and Pinterest for various distressing tips, and there are tons of different ways to do it. I have found my own technique in between all the searching and here are my tips and tutorials for two different pieces of furniture that I bought!

What you will need:

  • Paint for furniture (I used old paint we had leftover from painting our house & rooms in our house)
  • Paint brushes & foam brushes
  • Sand paper (medium sand paper)
  • Electric Sander (or your hands if you don’t have one)
  • Black shoe polish
  • Paint sealer
  • Old rags


Step 1: Purchase your furniture or find old furniture that you would like to repaint. Here are the items I bought, (take a look at my prior post for more information on where I purchased them and how much).

Step 2: Wipe down all of the furniture surfaces with a wet rag, make sure to dry. Take your sander and sand everywhere. Make sure to go with the grain of the wood. Or use your hands to hand sand it if you would like or don’t have a sander. Once you are done sanding it, wipe down to remove all the dust.

Step 3: Paint the entire surface of your furniture piece with the color of paint that you want. You only need one layer to make it look more vintage. You can do more if you wish.

Step 4: Let dry for two hours or until completely dry. Open your bottle of black shoe polish and take a bristle paintbrush to lightly add strokes all over the furniture where you want it to look distressed. Work quickly and take your rag and wipe off to remove the excess polish.

Step 5: This step is up to your discretion. When I originally started my project, I used stain for wood and I really wasn’t a fan of the brown color all over, so I added another layer of white paint again. If you feel like you don’t like how dark your vintage look is, you can paint it again.

Step 5: Once this is all dry and looks like you want it to, bring out your sander or sand paper again. Take the sand paper and buff up the edges any anywhere that you want a worn look. I use it until the main wood shows through.

Step 6: Once the sanding is done, wipe it all off. After 24 hours of drying, make sure to add 1-2 layers of sealer to make sure the paint stays well! All done!

3 thoughts on “Vintage Distressed Furniture Tutorial

  1. Pingback: Vintage Chevron Painted Table | Well, That's Pinteresting!

  2. Pingback: DIY Chalk Paint | Well, That's Pinteresting!

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