Painting Laminate Furniture. It’s a topic that get’s brought up by my customers on the daily.
The short answer is YES. You can paint laminate furniture.
The long answer is there are many tips you need to keep in mind when painting laminate.
Laminate means that the top of the pieces of furniture has a plastic overlay.
This is great for durability but not so good when it comes to style and your home’s esthetic.
Need to paint laminate? Here are my top tips for laminate painting success.
My Mom is a 1st Grade school teacher and this summer her school had a bond issue to add on to their growing school. This meant that she needed to switch classrooms for the upcoming school year.
I am so blessed that my mom watches my kids 2 days a week during the summer. So when she saw her new classroom she was horrified by three different mismatched painted laminate cabinets.
I guess when your daughter is a interior stylist and pro painter for a living you have discerning taste regarding painted furniture finishes.
She snapped a few pictures with her phone and sent me some text messages pleading for my help.
No pleading needed, Mom. It’s the least I can do for all of the help you give me with my kiddos.
Here are two of the cabinets that needed painted.
The shelves were coated with plastic laminate and were in less than sanitary condition.
I gave all three cabinets a mega scrub down with clorox wipes. Since clorox wipes are textured I chose to use them because of their scrubbing power. You can also use TSP or Simple Green to clean a piece prior to painting it. If you have read my book, The Lazy Girl’s Guide to Furniture Painting or taken my eCourse, Furniture Painting Essentials, then you already know this.
For the best coverage I used a True Applicator from Heirloom Traditions Paint. When you think of painting you automatically move your hand in a sweeping side to side motion. Here you pounce your applicator up and down which will self level the paint for a brush-stroke free finish.
I applied the first coat of paint and allowed it to dry overnight. If you learn NOTHING from this blog post but this then my job is done. When painting over a plastic surface you need to give the paint cure time so it gets super hard and will bond to the shiny and slick plastic coating of laminate.
Here I used Freshwater by Heirloom Traditions Paint as my base coat.
After the first coat had time to dry overnight I applied a second coat in one of my custom colors I developed for Heirloom Traditions Paints, Ball Jar Blue.
I sealed the interior bookshelves in two coats of Matte Water Based Top Coat. Again, I allowed each coat to dry overnight because books would be sliding in and out of the shelves. And let’s face it, 22 first graders aren’t the most gentle crowd.
I used White Lime Gel Wax for the exterior and the doors. I just couldn’t manage to leave it painted in one color and call it done.
Restraint is not my middle name.
Another tips is to have a smart board around when you are tackling projects with two kids in tow.
Don’t want to install a Smart Board in your living room.
An iPad is a good substitute. =)
Everyone in my mom’s school has been flocking to her classroom to ask her about the freshly painted cabinets.
I can tell she gets a spark of joy bragging about me a little bit.
When I hear her mom pride coming out I quietly duck out of the room for fear that my face will turn bright red.
But as a Mom I get it. I can’t steal her mamma bird thunder. Brag away mom, brag away.
Have you had any experiences painting laminate?
With a little bit of good advice and some patience your projects can turn out professionally and perfectly!