Oct 31, 2012

How to choose between roller and brush

Is is better to paint using roller or brush? This question I asked myself a lot of time when refurbishing furniture. And  tried with various rollers and brushes to see what works best for me. I love water based, acrylic paint. For larger surfaces, with fine velur roller I achieve the best results (and much faster than with the brush). But, for oil-based paints, as they are a little bit 'sticky', roller is not so good -  fine, good quality pure-bristle brush works better for me. Sponge brushes I found good for corners, in the combination with rollers. Anyway, it is important to pay attention on the brush or roller material, as I wrote in the post How to choose paint brushes  - general rule: use polyester roller/brush for water-based paint and natural material for oil-based paint. And try different tools to get filling. You can always repaint and make changes.     My hubby sometimes doesn't like the color or technique I choose, and I always answer him: Never mind, I can always repaint it if I am not happy with  the final result. And few time I really did - something immediately, some pieces of furniture after a year or two, either I didn't like them any more, or changed the overall style or color of the space.
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Oct 26, 2012

Paper bead jewelry

I am always working on few parallel projects. Sometimes it is OK, I need to rethink about the next step or simply, wait for paint to dry. But sometimes, I am eager to finish everything and have too much on the agenda. I am writing this because I was frustrated this morning when remember that started paper bead necklace few month ago and did't have time to finish it (and needed just the like the unfinished one). Paper is definitely my favorite material. And how to make paper beads and make various jewelry pieces you can find on the paperbeads site. I discovered it recently and love the pieces and tuts I found there.

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Oct 23, 2012

Wonderful news - I am on Totally Tutorials!

I am thrilled my post is published on Totally Tutorials. As a new Blogger it is difficult for me to reach to the people and have followers or readers. Hope this would help, and more surfers will find my blog useful. I learned a lot reading other sites and hope my blog will help somebody else providing some interesting information.
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Oct 19, 2012

How to choose paint brushes

Synthetic or natural bristle brushes?

When painting furniture people (myself too) usually pay attention to choose the right paint - color, type, supplier. For a long time I didn't take take what type of brush to choose. But if you want to achieve the professional look, this is important as well. Basically, the choice of the right brush depends on the paint you are using: for water-based (acrylic) paint, use synthetic - polyester or nylon bristles. Oil-based paints apply best with natural or pure bristle brushes. The natural fibers absorb water, swell up and lose their shape, so using them with water-based paints will cause poor result. On the other hand, 
when using a synthetic brush with an oil-based paint the solvent in the paint slightly melts the polyester or nylon hairs of the brush, clumping them together. 

After this initial choice, there are number of other features to look, like eg. density (better brushes have more bristles and they are tapered) or length, but you need some experience to see what works bets for you. What is easy to test for everyone is to try tug a few bristles out of the brush - if this is done easily, take some other brush. I have three furry pets always moving around me, and I am used to struggle with hairs left on the paint film, but honestly, this is not what I like, and what is appreciated after all preps yoe9ve done. So, choose the good brush and enjoy your work. 

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Oct 10, 2012

Pumpkin, squash, pumpkin

Fall has arrived and  surprised us again with all these beautiful colors. Every Saturday I visit local market and enjoy the variety of vegetables and fruits, and this month, the color, shapes, sizes of pumpkins and squashes. In my country (Croatia, Europe)  Halloween is not part of the tradition, but we love squashes and make meals, soup, cakes and  keep them as decoration as well.

Delicious pumpkin soup

This delicious cream soup is very easy to make, but one of the best you'll ever taste. Read the recipe and enjoy!

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Oct 8, 2012

Furniture makeover - Wood stains

I love trees - you can see that from the blog title. And I love wood and wood grains to be visible on furniture, if possible. When refurbish some old piece, I usually  plan to use stain and to have grains visible. It is not always possible for many reasons - item condition, previous paint layers, too much (manual) sanding efforts. Recently, I decided to stain a table and bought a water-based wood stain. From the beginning I felt something is wrong, the result was too opaque. And then, started to google of course, and found out there are basically two different types of wood stain: 
- low-build wood stains allowing enhanced wood structure appearance  (on the picture above) and 
medium or high-build stains that are rather opaque.

Not to mention that there stains dedicated for exterior and those for interior, etc. But, talking about the impression, take care about the opacity. After all those sanding and preparations, right stain should be applied.

The positive thing is, I now know now that, even if there are imperfections I can't avoid for some reason, I can still use stain (medium-build this time) and get grain at least moderately visible.
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Oct 3, 2012

DIY Shabby-looking sign

Shabby chic furniture look has been very popular last years, and for the reason. It is particularly convenient for the hobby crafters and  beginners as you don't need to be master to refurbish something old  and get astonished new piece of furniture. That is one of the reasons I like it as well. The other is sense of romance this style brings to my home. But personally, I think it should be a little bit careful and not to overdo to use it. I prefer more modern style with some romantic details and space overcrowded with flowers, pillows, curtains,  shabby chic pieces is not what I would choose.
This shabby-looking sign is detail I painted in my kitchen, above the window. 
It is very simple project and see how I did it.

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