Tips For Painting With White

Farmhouse White is our second Featured Color of the Month for February.

It’s a fresh and bright white that reminds us of picket fences surrounding a country farmhouse.  It offers the best coverage of all of our whites too, making it an ideal choice if you’re looking to freshen up a piece in your home.

But did you know that painting with white can sometimes be a bit more tricky than expected?  Because white paint doesn’t have nearly the amount of pigments as other colors, it’s good to have a few tricks up your sleeve to pull out when you’re using this particular color.

If you’re going to paint a piece of furniture that has an existing dark stain or paint color, it may take more than 2 coats of Farmhouse White to fully cover over the dark layers underneath.  One of the best tricks we can offer to you is to paint on a layer of one of our grays first.

You can choose from Shutter Gray,

our mid-tone gray, Trophy,

or our warm “greige”, Schloss.

Painting on a layer of either of these three lovely grays will provide a neutral base on which you can apply Farmhouse White (or any of our whites for that matter).

Here’s an example of a project that required three coats of Farmhouse White.  This antique pie safe found its way into Miss Mustard Seed’s heart when she was out shopping one day.

As you can see, the wood was very dark and it required three full coats of Farmhouse White to get the clean coverage she was looking for.  It was well worth it, would you say?

Here’s an example of a project where a coat of Trophy gray served as a base.  Remember Miss Mustard Seed’s Restoration Hardware rocking horse?

The wood had an existing dark finish, so Miss Mustard Seed painted on a base coat of Trophy first to help neutralize the color of the wood.

Next, she added Grain Sack on the body.  The hoofs, mane and tail received a custom blend of Shutter Gray and Trophy.  Finally, the runners and bridle were painted in straight Shutter Gray.

There was something in the wood that did not play nicely with Milk Paint, so Miss Mustard Seed used a bit of Bonding Agent in her mixture along with some extra sanding to keep it under control.  The rocking horse still turned out chippy and charming, but it was a bit more reigned in with these extra efforts.  (Do you see what we did there?  Reigned in?!)

Miss Mustard Seed also used this trick on an Antique Victorian Settee she painted and upholstered for Chapel Market back in 2014.

The wood was very dark, so she had Kriste paint on a layer of Shutter Gray first to act as a neutral base.  Then, coats of Ironstone were applied to get the white finish Miss Mustard Seed wanted.

On her original post, she wrote:

“You may be wondering why I’m painting this piece Shutter Gray if I want it white.  Well, you may be aware that white doesn’t cover very well, especially over dark wood.  I knew I would be in for multiple coats of paint if I went straight for the white.  By applying a mid-tone gray on first, the number of coats will be reduced.  Kriste applied the first coat of Ironstone…once the Shutter Gray was dry.”

Again, this trick paid off!

Another tip to keep in mind when you’re working with Farmhouse White is that it may not always mix to the ideal consistency when you use our recommended one-to-one ratio.  If you watched Miss Mustard Seed’s latest Facebook live on our Facebook page, she mentioned that some of the colors in our collection mix thin or thick even though you add one part Milk Paint powder to one part water.

Milk Paint Demo

Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint Demo!

Posted by Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint on Friday, February 2, 2018

Like Miss Mustard Seed said, mixing Milk Paint is kind of like baking.  Think of your Grandmother’s biscuit recipe that reads, “Add 4-6 tablespoons of water”.  Well, is it 4, 5, or 6?  There are so many variables that can influence the amount of ingredients you’ll need, and Milk Paint isn’t any different.  Sometimes you’ll need more water while other days you’ll need more powder.

We personally find that Farmhouse White mixes a bit thicker and more water is needed to get it to the consistency of melted ice cream.  Don’t stress though!  Simply add what you need to get a mixture that looks right to you.  Milk Paint should ideally fall off a stir stick in a steady ribbon, string, or stream, kind of like this:

As always, you should stir your Milk Paint in your container every few brush strokes or dips.  Because our paint is such a simple and primitive product, there aren’t any suspenders or binders in it to keep everything mixed throughout the painting process.  Your hand and a good ‘ol popsicle stick (or spoon, or mini whisk) are the magic agent that keeps everything blended together.

For more tips on Milk Paint coverage, you can visit our post from a few days ago.  Farmhouse White can be purchased from your local brick-and-mortar retailer.  Search for a location closest to your home here.  We truly “heart” our retailers, so we encourage you to pop by one of over 250 locations worldwide!

If you own a small business and would like to join the Milk Paint family, you can learn more about our retailer application process here.  We’re getting more and more applications as time goes by, so we’d love for you to join us and move mountains in your community!

If you’re an online shopper, we have options for you too!

Wherever you go to shop, we hope our tips will help you love Farmhouse White even more!


Related posts:

One thought on “Tips For Painting With White

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *