One of the things you may want to do to give your furnishings new life is to age them. Did that sentence just blow your mind? New life by making something look older? Don’t let that Military-Industrial-Botox Complex get hold of this idea. What we’re talking about here is the idea of making a piece of furniture look older than it does right now. Not necessarily making a piece of furniture look older than it actually is, understand, because you can distress an antique just as much as you can distress something you mistakenly bought from IKEA during a fever dream.
Ever notice how really old furniture has paint with cracks in it? If that furniture were the face of an actress, it would be worth less, but funny thing about furniture. It’s nothing at all like the face of an actress. Crackling is the art of falsifying reality by creating a crackling effect in the paint, thus creating the illusion of age. And, as you well know by now, when it comes to furniture, aging is good. How to create this crackling effect in the paint? Go to the store-preferably a locally owned enterprise rather than Lowes or Home Depot-and ask for special varnish and paint used for crackling. The key to creating effective aging is to allow enough time for the base coat of varnish to dry fully before you apply the all-important second coat. Consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, but when it comes to crackling, consistently of varnish is the difference between crackling that gives the illusion of age and crackling that just looks like cheap paint.
Gilding does not just age a furnishing; it gives the illusion of really high class. Gilded items have the Midas touch. That means that they are artfully adorned with a bit of gold on it. Gilding combines age with sophistication, which is just the opposite of crackling. Crackling may make a thing look old, but it does not exactly look high class. Achieve the classy aging by investing in the specialized assortment of tools that are required to gild properly. You can, if you are pressed for money and time, just invest in a small paintbrush and gold paint and trace lines of golden joy around the edges. True and proper gilding is much more detail-oriented, but the results can be spectacular.
Here we go again! Waxing is done on people to make them look younger. In some places, waxing is used to make a person look much younger. But when it comes to furniture, wax is introduced into the situation to provide the illusion of an item grown old. Old, yes, but not useless. Get yourself a bit of melted wax and use a paintbrush to apply it over a painted area on the furniture and allow it to dry. Then grab a Brillo pad or its cheaper generic equivalent and give the waxy area a light buffing. The result is something that, when done correctly, will appropriate the appearance of time burnished into the furniture’s finish.