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Favorite Makeovers

Painting Furniture with General Finishes Milk Paint


I love a beautiful white painted piece of furniture. White painted furniture always come out looking so fresh and clean! I shared this White Painted Buffet Makeover and these Vintage White Painted Nightstands several months ago. I even painted a piano with white chalk paint®. That was a FUN project!


General Finishes offers a nice white paint called called Antique White. It's the perfect white hue for kitchen cabinets and furniture pieces. If you're looking for a really bright white, General Finishes Snow White might be what you're looking for.



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Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored by General Finishes and I did not receive anything in exchange for this post. I just love the product so much that I wanted to share about it! This post does contain affiliate links which means I may receive a small commission for any purchases you might make, but your price will stay the same. Please read my full disclosure.




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I picked up this scrolly detailed armoire at a yard sale for $25. I think armoires are the perfect size to add extra storage and style to larger bathrooms, entry ways, spare bedrooms, or office spaces. As pretty as these details were, I couldn't leave it "as is". I decided to update this armoire with General Finishes Milk Paint in Snow White.


How I Prep My Furniture for General Finishes Milk Paint


I like to clean my used furniture with TSP to get rid of all the dirt, dust and oils that might be built up.  Back in the day, folks used to love to dust their furniture with Pledge. ;) I've also mixed a 50/50 solution of water and denatured alcohol before and scrubbed my furniture with a Scotch Brite pad.


Once dry, I like to give my pieces a quick and light sanding. I vacuum up all of the dust and give the furniture a good wipe down.



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Painting With General Finishes Milk Paint


Stir your paint thoroughly before using. General Finishes Milk Paint is not a true milk paint. It's much thicker in consistency. I like to use a Purdy 2' paint brush to apply the milk paint to my pieces. GF Milk Paint is easy to work with. Once you've painted an area leave it and go onto the next. You want to avoid over brushing while areas are still tacky.


Follow the instructions on the paint can for drying times and temperatures. In my experience the furniture is ready for a second coat after about 2-3 hours of drying time.


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For this piece, it took 2 1/2 coats. I used our natural distressing technique to distress the piece simply by painting it. I think having the contrast of the natural wood tones peaking through the white paint brings out more of the curvy details.



I even painted the hardware! Yes, you can paint your old furniture hardware with General Finishes Milk Paint too! You can see more examples of this on our Balayage Inspired Media Console and on this Pure & Original Cabinet Makeover.





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Protecting Your General Finishes Milk Paint Finish


General Finishes Milk Paint is one of the hardier furniture paints that I've used. For an armoire that gets medium wear, I could leave it as is and the paint finish would hold up beautifully. But, I like to protect all of my furniture makeovers with a protective coat.



General Finishes High Performance in Flat is my go to topcoat. It's non-yellowing and dries fairly quickly.



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There is magical power in paint! -Thirty Eighth Street


If you've been a reader for any length of time then you know that I'm an advocate for painting furniture. Not ALL pieces of furniture. Just the ones you can't stand or enjoy. ;) There truly is power in paint. It's such an inexpensive way to update your furniture and create the space you've always wanted!



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Would you like to see more furniture transformations? Visit our Painting Furniture Tutorials & Resource page for lots more furniture refinishing tips & tricks!



These talented DIY Furniture Refinishing friends of mine scored these outdated finds. Stop by and see how they decided to refinish them!


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1. Restoration Hardware Weathered Wood Dresser Finish by J. Burns Design
2. Santa Fe Turquoise Desk Makeover by Lynn Fern
3. Unique Painted Etagere by Just the Woods, LLC.
4. Efex Applique Table by That Sweet Tea Life
5. General Finishes Painted Armoire by Thirty Eighth Street
6. New Twist on a Traditional Desk by 58 Water Street



Have a great week, friends!
Carrie || Thirty Eighth Street




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16 comments

  1. Beautiful job! The paint really enhanced the intricate curved details of the wood panels. I, too love General Finishes paints and finishes- Flat Out Flat is one of the best products I have ever used! And yes, there is definitely power in paint- that old ugly brown cupboard would have been, at best, in someone's garage as storage and at worst, in a dumpster. And now it is a stunning showpiece! Well done.

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    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed this makeover! I agree, General Finishes has some a lot of quality products!

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  2. Stunning! I love all the details and white is a for sure classic.

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    1. It's hard to go wrong with white! Those swirly details made my job look easy. :) Thank you for your sweet comments!

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  3. Carrie, your piece turned out just beautiful!! I love the details the paint picked up. Thank you so much for sharing with us at the What to do Weekends party!!
    Theresa @ Shoestring Elegance

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    1. Thank you for your kind words, Theresa! The swirly details were my favorite part too!

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  4. Absolutely gorgeous transformation!

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  5. Simply gorgeous Carrie. The scroll work on the piece is amazing and the white paint seems to emphasize the detail so much more. Stunning

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    1. It sure was a fun piece to paint! Thanks, Michelle!

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  6. Carrie, I have a major crush on that armoire! It's just lovely...wish I could have found something like that when we were redoing my daughter's room last year.

    I know are absolutely loving it! Well done.

    Hugs, Lynn

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    1. Thank you, Lynn! I have all boys. Wish I could fit more girly pieces like this one in my home!

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  7. Fantastic piece of furniture (once it's painted)! Love it. Thanks so much for sharing with us at Snickerdoodle! Pinned to share.
    ~Laurie @Myhusbandhastoomanyhobbies

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  8. The makeover is incredible. Thank you for sharing it with us at Vintage Charm.

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