Crackle Paint Preparation Instructions Crackle Paint Preparation Instructions

What You'll Need
Fine grit sandpaper
Dish liquid
Rubbing Alcohol
Plastic drop cloths
Old towels
Steel wool
Paint scraper
Paint (base coat)

Adding a crackle paint effect is an easy way to make old or new furniture look like an expensive designer piece. Depending on what type of surface you will be working with, you will need to do some preparation to be sure your project comes out right. Here the steps that you will need to follow to prepare your piece.

Step 1 - Remove Drawers and Hardware

If your piece has hardware, such as on drawers or cabinet fronts, remove them from the piece and use your screwdriver to remove the hardware. Set the hardware aside. This is a good time to soak your hardware to remove dirt and debris. Place in a container of warm water with dish liquid and allow to soak for at least and hour. Rinse, and wipe dry. Set all of the pieces in a place where it is all together so you don’t lose any small parts, like screws. Place the drawers or doors on a plastic drop cloth. Also place plastic drop cloths under the furniture that you removed any doors or drawers from to protect your flooring. Now you are ready to sand your piece to help the crackle paint to stick better.

Step 2 - Sand

Using fine grit sandpaper, start sanding the pieces that you have removed. Rub in a circular motion paying special attention to any nooks or crannies. The sanding will rough up the piece to make the paint adhere well. If the piece you have has been previously painted, you will need to use a paint scraper to remove any loose paint. Follow with sanding just enough to rough it up. All of the paint does not need to be removed, as it will be covered. Just be sure to remove any loose paint. Follow by sanding the rest of the piece to get a rough surface. If there are metal parts that your will using crackle paint on, you will need to be sure there is no rust.

Step 3 - Remove Rust

For any rusty areas, such as table legs, use steel wool to rub the areas until the rust is removed. Rub gently in a circular motion. Once the rust is gone, use rubbing alcohol on an old towel or rag to remove all residual debris. The alcohol will air dry in just a minute. Carefully inspect your piece to be sure all the rust is gone, and if not, repeat this process. Paint will not stay on any rusted areas. Your piece is now ready for primer.

Step 4 - Primer

Using primer will fill in any dings on your piece and will assure that the crackle paint will stick and not peel. Apply the paint in an even coat on the entire piece. Start with the drawer or doors that you removed, and then work on the main piece. You will want to let the primer dry for 24 hours before painting. If you notice any areas after it has dried that did not get even covering, paint these spots again and allow them to completely dry. Your piece is ready for the base coat.

Step 5 - Base Coat

The base coat is the coat of paint that will show through under the crackle paint. This should be a dark color. The color choice will depend on your color scheme. Any dark color that you would like to use will work. Common colors used are brown, hunter green, dark red, or navy blue. Use your paintbrush to apply the base coat. You will not need to be real careful about brush strokes because the crackle paint will go over it. Just be sure that you get a good even coat on all the areas so the effect is uniform on the whole piece when crackled. Your piece is now correctly prepared and ready for the crackle paint finish. All you have left to do is apply the crackle paint, allow it to dry, then cover with clear coat and enjoy your new piece!

Got a New Project You're Proud of?

Post it on Your Projects!