I don’t know about where you live, but around here, we love September through November. The long, sunny days are milder in temperature, but much, much less humid. These are absolutely perfect conditions for outdoor painting. And wouldn’t you know? I just happen to have a stack of projects waiting for a fall refresh.
Among these projects is a long, long overdue porch swing.
Although it is just a standard swing from the home improvement center, it is made out of soft pine and has to live outdoors year-round totally unprotected. Well finally, all the years of bad refinishing jobs took their toll and, this fall, I was faced with three layers of different kinds of paint that had combined into a hot-blistered mess.
How would I ever get this paint stripped off so that new paint or stain could be applied?
Outdoor Porch Swing Makeover with Milk Paint
And so, the research began.
Step 1: Strip Off Layers of Old Paint
Here I had two basic choices. Either use a chemical stripper to melt away the layers of old paint or sand until I hit raw pine. But if you look closely, the swing has slats. This means that with either method, I’d still have to find a way to “floss” the paint away from in between each and every slat. To get ALL of the paint from inbetween those slats could take forever.
Huuuum. No. There had to be a better way.
So after looking at my options, I decided to scrape away the paint that was blistered, use sheets of sandpaper to “floss” paint from between the slats, and then sand the entire swing until smooth.
Did I get all of the paint off? No.
And did this concern me? No.
Let me explain why.
Disclosure: I was supplied free product by Old Fashioned Milk Paint Company in exchange for writing a review. All hot-blistered swing messes and opinions are 100% my own.
Step 2: Choose the New Paint or Stain
After Step 1, the swing was still kind of a hot mess, but it was no longer blistered. And the paint that remained was now buttery-smooth and stuck to the wood like white on rice. Moving forward, I needed to cover a combination of latex and oil-based paint with raw wood.
At this point, I could either prime and then paint with an oil-based/latex combination of products or use one product, like milk paint, that is designed to work as a stain or a paint.
Step 3: Mix a Custom Color
To get the color I wanted, three different colors of milk paint were mixed together. Yep, all I did was toss the powder in a container and mix with water according to the manufacturer’s directions.
And for the record, this combination makes a super yummy color that is made of:
3 parts Tavern Green + 3 parts Soldier Blue + 2 parts Snow White
Just add together:
- Level tablespoonfuls of each powder
- Add 9 tablespoonfuls of lukewarm water
- Stir every one to two minutes for 20-minutes
Step 4: Apply the Milk Paint
- The paint was applied without any special tools. I just used an old brush.
- The paint was applied right over the raw wood and remaining paint without a primer or bonding agent. I knew it would soak into the raw wood and wasn’t concerned if there was some chipping when applied over the old paint. After all, a little chippy goodness is always a good thing. AmIrite?
- The coverage you see is after only ONE coat! I know! You can’t see me, but I’m totally doing a super happy dance right now.
Step 5: Let Dry for 24 Hours
Just leave the piece in a safe place to dry. The paint is usually dry to the touch in about 30-minutes, but to garner the best adhesion, allow extra drying time.
Step 6: Soft Sand to Desired Finish
After 24-hours, the swing needed very little sanding to get to a buttery-smooth finish. I had the option to wet distress, but really wanted to leave as much paint on the swing as possible. If the paint wasn’t chipping or wasn’t rough, I decided to leave it alone. This is because the swing will live outdoors in an unprotected area so the milk paint is a good layer of protection between the wood and the elements.
The result is a slightly distressed finish that shows a tiny bit of the old paint, but is without any chipping at all.
And given that the paint was applied over raw wood, latex paint and oil-based paint, I am amazed that the coverage and color are completely even.
If you look closely, there is variation in color that adds depth to the finish. This is a normal characteristic of milk paint and not due to the distressing technique.
Step 7: Seal with a Weatherproof Topcoat
Part II of this three-part series will explain the easy way to weather proof the milk paint finish and will link back to this post. This process is currently underway.
And that’s all there is to it.
A milk paint finish in a fab custom color. Who knew?
For more information about this or other products, please visit their site Old Fashioned Milk Paint.
I do hope you will visit the blog again to see more of this outdoor swing makeover.
Part II – Spray Paint Furniture the Easy Way
features Weatherproofing a newly refinished Outdoor Swing
Part III – How to Construct a Faux Pergola – LOL..Yes… You’ll just have to see it to believe it.
And, as always, please feel free to pin this Paint Recipe and Technique for later.
#oldfashionedmilkpaintco #oldfashionedmilkpaint #ofmp #ofmpblogger #swing #porchswing