DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish – Vintage Look

DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish – Vintage Look

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I’m so in love with this DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish. Here’s how to get that perfect Vintage Paint Look!

I love happy accidents. Don’t you? This DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish was absolutely a happy accident. I started this paint makeover thinking I was giving this DIY Wood Toy Box a crackle finish. BUT, the crackle product I bought completely failed (see it on IG). Luckily, sanding all of that off created this beautiful vintage, rustic, shabby distressed paint finish, that I absolutely love!

And, I can tell you exactly how I created this pretty vintage paint finish with just 7 easy steps. The key is to pick 3+ colors you really love together. Then layer them up in interesting ways. Any edges, corners, moulding, or other details on your furniture would look more interesting with multiple layers of paint colors.

Painting the hardware is another way to add to that vintage, shabby look. You can always paint your hardware with layers of paint too or go for a metal look. I used 3 pulls I saved from that 70’s style dresser I cut in half to make my powder room vanity and cute toy storage.

DIY Rustic Multicolor Distressed Paint Steps anyone can do to get a beautiful vintage chippy look. Furniture Before and After Project with DIY Steps and how-to video. #AbbottsAtHome #FurnitureMakeover #LayeredPaint #ChalkPaint #BeforeAndAfter #FurnitureRedo

First I rubbed gold rub n buff on it, but didn’t love the gold on it’s own. So, I covered most of the gold with Folk Art Antique Copper to match the copper on the chest and that paint pour top. With just a bit of the gold showing through, the pulls now look vintage and beautiful too.

And, speaking of that paint pour top, I used the teal and blue paint colors from the materials list below with a copper paint. I mixed 2 or 3 new colors for that pour by mixing the teal and blues together to create matching but different shades of blue and teal. You can see a really great tutorial for how I do a paint pour here.

I'm so in love with this DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish. Here are the easy DIY steps and how-to video.You can get that perfect Vintage, Rustic Paint Look with 7 easy DIY Steps. #AbbottsAtHome #FurnitureMakeover #PaintingFurniture #Vintage #DIYIdeas #PaintTips
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One last thing before we get started, this project is just 1 of 15 Under $20 DIY Decor Projects shared by some of my talented blogger friends. You can find a link to all of their awesome Under $20 projects at the end of this tutorial. OK, let’s start this DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish tutorial, guys.


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I'm so in love with this DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish. Here are the easy DIY steps and how-to video.You can get that perfect Vintage, Rustic Paint Look with 7 easy DIY Steps. #AbbottsAtHome #FurnitureMakeover #PaintingFurniture #Vintage #DIYIdeas #PaintTips

This layered paint look might be my new obsession. I’ll definitely have to try it again, soon.

DIY Rustic Multicolor Distressed Paint Steps anyone can do to get a beautiful vintage chippy look. Furniture Before and After Project with DIY Steps and how-to video. #AbbottsAtHome #FurnitureMakeover #LayeredPaint #ChalkPaint #BeforeAndAfter #FurnitureRedo

Materials Used

How to Paint Shabby Distressed Paint Video

I did this on a DIY wooden toy box I built, last month. But, it would work great on stripped furniture or wood signs and decor, too. To get a better idea of what I did, you can see all of the steps for this DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish in the video. 🙂

DIY Vintage Distressed Paint – Steps

Step One

I started by distressing my wood with a hammer and very small gauge screwdriver. Just to give the wood more character. My oldest thought this was the coolest part of the entire DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish project!

Step Two

Sand the wood with 150-grit sandpaper, then clean off all dust with a tack cloth or clean rag.

Step Three

Apply a coat of Danish Oil to stain the wood a darker color. It also soaks in to seal and harden the wood a bit. I let that dry, then followed up with a coat of a water-based polycrylic. This just helps to protect that stained wood from being sanded bare, accidentally.

Step Four

Apply the paint colors you picked for your shabby distressed paint finish, in whatever pattern you think will look good on your furniture. Let it dry between coats. Layer more than one color in multiple places to give the wood a more vintage vibe.

DIY Rustic Multicolor Distressed Paint Steps anyone can do to get a beautiful vintage chippy look. Furniture Before and After Project with DIY Steps and how-to video. #AbbottsAtHome #FurnitureMakeover #LayeredPaint #ChalkPaint #BeforeAndAfter #FurnitureRedo

Step Five

I used the blue paint as my main color. I applied it in step four on most of my DIY Toy Chest. After all of the paint dried from step four, I applied a coat of that blue over all of the wood again. Let all of that paint dry and cure overnight.

Step Six

I wet my fine grit sanding sponge, squeezed it out and scrubbed the entire outside of the chest. On some spots I scrubbed harder and longer to reveal more layers. This is kind of a gut-feel thing. Go with what you like to get a distressed look you love. I had to rinse out the sponge more than a dozen times to clean off the built up paint.

Step Seven

When you’ve finished distressing. Wipe the wood with a damp cloth. Let that dry. Then seal everything with 2 coats of an untinted finishing wax. Follow the directions for the wax to get the proper finish.

DIY Rustic Multicolor Distressed Paint Steps anyone can do to get a beautiful vintage chippy look. Furniture Before and After Project with DIY Steps and how-to video. #AbbottsAtHome #FurnitureMakeover #LayeredPaint #ChalkPaint #BeforeAndAfter #FurnitureRedo
You can see how I mainly used teal on the bottom of the toy box and the wood accent pieces.
DIY Rustic Multicolor Distressed Paint Steps anyone can do to get a beautiful vintage chippy look. Furniture Before and After Project with DIY Steps and how-to video. #AbbottsAtHome #FurnitureMakeover #LayeredPaint #ChalkPaint #BeforeAndAfter #FurnitureRedo
I used copper on the accent pieces, on corners and edges, and near the hardware.
I'm so in love with this DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish. Here are the easy DIY steps and how-to video.You can get that perfect Vintage, Rustic Paint Look with 7 easy DIY Steps. #AbbottsAtHome #FurnitureMakeover #PaintingFurniture #Vintage #DIYIdeas #PaintTips
You can see more of the paint layering in the video. Good luck with your makeover!!

That’s it for this DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish tutorial. BUT, some of my incredibly talented blogger friends have also shared their latest DIY Decor Projects that can be done for Under $20. See more Under $20 DIY Decor Projects here.

Looking for another paint tutorial?? Check out my popular Pour on Two Canvases video, then head here to see the full DIY Wall Art tutorial and all of the pictures from that pour.


Looking for more easy DIY home decor? Check out this Easy DIY Resin Tray Tutorial and Video.

Or, this Paint Pour Tutorial & Video I used for pretty drawer bottoms.

This Fun & Easy DIY Acrylic Pour Tutorial is a great way to make unique and low cost art. But, how about using that acrylic pour on drawers and furniture?! #AbbottsAtHome #AcrylicPaint #DIYHomeDecor #AcrylicPouring


Feeling inspired? Now that you’ve seen this DIY Shabby Distressed Paint Finish tutorial, you can do it too. Let me know if you have questions. Don’t forget to sign up for the Abbotts At Home email newsletter to get DIY, Remodeling, and Crafty ideas in your inbox.

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