KrysFL
KrysFL
  • Hometalker
  • Lakeland, FL
Asked on Jun 27, 2013

Am I the only one?

FranPenelopeBarbara Baldwin
+220

Answered

I don't want to sound like a total "hater", but am I the only one who doesn't like distressed furniture? I see so many beautiful pieces of furniture that would look outstanding with a nice paint job (even maybe some glaze) and wax, that look totally ruined by over-sanding/over-distressing. A little distressed detail looks good. But I have seen way too many over-distressed pieces lately. What does everyone else think?
Paint w/ glaze, minor distressing just enough to accentuate the piece. To me this looks great (image from frenchcommode.com)
Paint w/ glaze, minor distressing just enough to accentuate the piece. To me this looks great (image from frenchcommode.com)
Really? Too me this is way too much! (image from houzz.com)
Really? Too me this is way too much! (image from houzz.com)
212 answers
  • Shari
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Like everything in decorating/design, it's all a matter of personal taste. With that being said, I have to agree with you. I have plenty of second-hand furniture pieces in my home that I have painted but I'm not a fan of distressing, especially when pieces have been distressed to the point they look like they fell off the back of a truck on the way to the dump. I'm not even a fan of glazing in most cases. Unless it is very, very, very subtly done, glaze comes off looking dirty to me, especially on white or light colors. If I had to live with distressed and glazed furniture in my home, it would drive my inner perfectionistic neat-freak tendencies crazy. There. I said it. :)

  • Kim C
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Although I've seen some really well distressed pieces I too prefer only a little shabby as my personal preference, your comparison above I would agree with.

  • Kitchen Kelli
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Nope - don't like distressed at all! I prefer something smooth with clean lines. I only distress something if I'm trying to sell it.

  • Donna keller
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Like distressing

  • Donna keller
    on Jun 27, 2013

    oops. I like the distressed look as long as it is subtle .

  • Louannemr8
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Nope, I don't care for it either. Maybe some minor distressing from use/age.

  • Z
    on Jun 27, 2013

    @Shari pretty much took the words right out of my mouth. When I take the time to refinish something I want to to look awesome not old and wore out. Though I look at distressed furniture as basically a new art form, few can do it well. Most come off as old, wore out and filthy dirty looking.

  • Christi Joyce
    on Jun 27, 2013

    I, too, prefer a nice paint job. However, it's easy for me to 'fret' about a nice piece until it has a few nicks & scrapes. Since my hubby and I have 2 sons and 3 dogs, that's a lot of frettin'! Now, I 'lightly distress' a few edges to get that lived in feel so I won't fret so much.

  • Sherrie
    on Jun 27, 2013

    I like some of it. But I also like stain and wood. It depends on what the piece is and what age it is I also have a paint sprayer that will give a nice clean surface. Then instead of polyurethane I wax it.

  • Debra at Eve Isle Studios
    on Jun 27, 2013

    I also don't care for the fully distressed look. A little around the edges to look 'lived with' and that's enough for me.

  • Sherrie
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Eve some of its great, some of it is to much. I love the beachy look that's distressed. I like black distressed a little. I have found some beautiful pieces on here made by some talented people. What is fun is seeing others unique idea's, some of it is like art. I go to the really high end stores and look. There are some really beautiful pieces out there. I would really like to learn some of those techniques.

  • Kaytrishjr
    on Jun 27, 2013

    Wow, this is the first time I've seen this comment! I really don't like the distressed look, but I wouldn't dare say it because it's so popular. Glad I'm not alone.

  • Joyce Keplinger
    on Jun 27, 2013

    I like distressed if it's old enough to be distressed. I don't take an obviously new item and beat it up. It will look distressed soon enough. That's not to say I wouldn't repaint a new piece to make it pop though.

  • KrysFL
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Thank you all so much for your opinions! I am happy to see that I am not the only one (I was feeling like the lone wolf over here) who feels that in a lot of cases, distressing devalues the true beauty of a piece. At the same time its true, it in itself is a work of art, so just as with any art, beauty is the individuals interpretation. Please keep the opinions coming. I love hearing how everyone feels (pro or con). Thanks again for sharing your thoughts! :)

  • Shannon R
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Nope, I hate it, too. I am just not into the "shabby chic" movement. Whenever I see pieces that are fashionably, rather than honestly, distressed, I think I must be the only person in the world who hates the look. Glad to see I'm not!

  • Ellen Knox
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I like the lightly distressed finishes. I don't like the heavily distressed furniture or cabinets. It looks like no one made the effort to take care of their furniture or kitchen cabinets. It just looks dirty and uncared for.

  • Barbara Thomas
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I'm with you! I don't care for distressed, chalk painted etc. furniture. I say if you put that kind of work into a piece it should either be to restore the finish or update it with a nice colored finish so it looks new and beautiful.

  • Z
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Gosh I am so thankful you asked this question KrysFL. I've been feeling quite alone about my feelings for wood furniture. I would have asked myself, but was afraid to offend many of my friends that love distressed furniture. As a very little girl my chore was to polish my Mom's furniture so maybe that's where I get my love of wood grain and furniture from.

  • Linda Stone
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Don't care for it either. BUT, if I did do any distressing, I would go for the lightly distressed. I think people go overboard and it ends up looking like junk.

  • Jeanine Wester
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I totally agree. It gets to the point of looking dirty. Like paint chips are going to come off of it lol!!

  • Sharon
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Hhmmm... not crazy when it's overdone... not to say I don't appreciate that someone repurposed,whatever,I guess it"s JUST ME being OCD or something... don't like disjointed stencils either in my house... i tried a few projects w/ them~ kept filling in the spaces,lol Thank goodness we are all different,though,or we would be in a mighty BORING world ...

  • Z
    on Jun 28, 2013

    @Donna R, you have to see this. I am NOT the only one that feels this way about distressed furniture! @Sharon even equates it with OCD too! Ha ha ha!

  • Sharon
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Thanks,Becky,trying to get me in trouble... I have repainted aged furniture and tried to add back 'the wear' a little,but there is a line...somewhere- for me it's a very short one...So glad "Variety is the Spice of Life"...hey,someone should stencil that on a spice rack or pillow ...Tee hee hee...

  • Z
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Nope @Sharon, just trying to let a dear friend know I'm not that only one that thought it might be OCD that keeps them from liking distressed furniture. I never have been a trend follower. No need to start now as far as I'm concerned.

  • Sharon
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Exactly,girl,lol...that is why I have so enjoyed hometalk from day 1...everyone has such differing ideas and so many unique ways of doing projects,also why it took me so long to post back... I start on one page,then before you know it I'm 14 clicks away,lol... such good stuff !and great people,too!

  • Jane A
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I don't like it either.....I am a do it yourself kind of person and prefer the nice clean painted items..

  • Honestly I don't like it either. But that being said, it really depends on the piece. I just did an old pine washstand and brought it back to it's original wood by wet distressing it. Now it looks like it's been whitewashed. That worked. But on a beautiful dresser like the one you've shown, I wouldn't do that. A light distressing works so much better.

  • Donna R
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I know you aren't the only one. Whether it's attributed to OCD, I really don't know. Maybe for some.

  • Sheryll S
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I don't like it at all, but then I have always danced to a different tune. I do like some of the antique glazing, but I don't want a dirty old look..... but again that is just me. I have seen it done so much, it might just be wearing me down with it all... but then if and when I decided I liked it, it would be out of fashion. lol

  • Yolinda Banks
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I hate, did I say that loud enough HATE HATE HATE!!!! it. I know design is all about personal taste but really... that just looks used and abused. when you look at the shape and style of the furniture for the most part it's fantastic. Makes me want to get a sander, polish it and paint it

  • Kitchen Kelli
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I'm so glad there are more of us! When I first responded there were 2 comments and now there are so many I think we should have a support group! :) I'm getting ready to do some chevron material and repaint the chairs. The ones for sell I will distress on the edges so they will sell and the one I keep - smooth as silk!

  • Terrie Kaufman
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Finally, someone else who voices my feelings! Why do people think you can take a can of some paint and brush it on furniture and call it "good"? What I am seeing out there is ugly and has no rhyme nor reason, it certainly it's something I would want in my home.

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Jun 28, 2013

    As a custom Furniture builder I like to see stuff age naturally. The difference between a "real" antique and a piece that has been aged is pretty obvious to me. Original quality often shines through. Decades from now there will be fewer items of quality out there...at least from some of the trends I have seen. Ikea sawdust and a paper furniture will be mush and end up in a land fill.

  • Donna
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I agree a little distressing goes a long way...I like a hint of cause I like my furniture to have a clean look too.

  • Patty Rumaker
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Hahahaha! I love it that everyone has their own particular taste because we are all different people so we are all going to like something different. Love it. I just did a post on Amy Howard at Home - and she has two new finishes for DIY that I am really interested in, the first is a finish that can distress mirrors and give you an antique finish and the other is a lacquer finish for a high gloss look. You can see the post here at http://homeandlifestyledesign.blogspot.com/2013/06/amy-howard-home-sneak-peek-dallas.html

  • Minuet Stephens
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Never ever will I distress something - and I'm recycling a lot of furniture in my house restoration. I've seen some makeovers of lovely wood chests that have made me want to get out the sander and rescue them all over again once they are 'done'. I like the polished look. In fact my dining table has some scratches and wear and I'm itching to fix it, not bash it with a hammer and run a grinder across it. I'm contemplating doing a design like this across the dining table. http://28gumtrees.wordpress.com/2013/06/22/chestoration/

  • Helen
    on Jun 28, 2013

    The distressed ones you pictured on the right are too much, but I love a lightly distressed look. It gives it character. Otherwise its a flat piece.

  • Frankie Laney
    on Jun 28, 2013

    "Hi my name is Frankie and I am a lover of uniquely painted furniture". However, I have a desire to see just one layer of paint at a time, along with a little colored wax to deepen the color. I have a few pieces that have worn spots, I call that old furniture, I like the bones. I do like that green Bombe chest that you have displayed, it's really cool. Thank you. Oh, and that Bombe chest on the right.....it's just downright nasty! Ewww

  • WannaBGardener
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Glad to know that I am not the only one that hates the distressed look (crackled finish too). It's hard to believe people pay to purchase these ugly items.

  • Ranelle
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Wow...to each her own, right? I personally LOVE distressed furniture (especially authentic peely, chipped paint. But none of it really is in my house). I actually distress furniture for resale. BUT...I do agree that new pieces distressed seems over done. And I also agree...its a shame to paint over really NICE wood antiques. That being said...I have painted over many antique pieces, but I am usually rescuing an out dated piece, restoring a damaged one, or repurposing something no one really likes anymore. In the 60's early 70's my mom and her friends all painted a "distressed look" which was a two step paint and glaze process. In the 80's everyone wanted wood again, so many of us stripped layers of paint off furniture and restored them back to original. Now the trend is paint furniture again. Do you think the next generations will take the time to strip off paint again LOL!!!

  • Sheryll S
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Oh my gosh, thank you ever so much Minuet Stephens.... that is the most fantastic information and idea for me. I am going to use some of my Wisteria leaves on my cheap Pine boards headboard. I love that. And charcoal... what a fab idea!!!

  • Paula
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I was buying "distressed" pieces back in the eighties! I love the look! But "haters" never fear, it will be gone again in a flash and new and shiny will be back "in". (And I'll be called old fashioned and creepy once again) although Icompletely understand where you are coming from, as I have not one piece of anything in my home that displays either a random word or pithy saying......*shivers*

  • Porta Verde Studio
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I know totally what you mean! I don't heavily distress furniture. I think that finely painted furniture works everywhere and will endure over time. I remember Shabby Chic was a trend 20 years and has made a comeback. I also don't like working with Chalk Paint though I will use it on request. Here is a pic of one of my pieces that has been painted in satin black oil, very lightly distressed on the edges and had the heavy ornamental trim stripped off and given new pulls and knobs. I also painted the interior and lined it with damask fabric. Jacqui www.portaverdestudio.com www.facebook.com/portaverdestudio

    am i the only one, painted furnituream i the only one, painted furnituream i the only one, painted furniture
  • Sandra L
    on Jun 28, 2013

    To me a distressed piece looks junky and abused! No thanks.

  • Sue Weiker
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I like a little distressing, nothing like the trunks on the right. Those are downright ugly and look more like junk wanting to be rescued.

  • Mandi Heinz-Wilson
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I am not a fan of the faux-distressed look either. I think it looks cheap. Why take years worth of gorgeous patina off of stained/painted furniture and slosh some paint and wax on it...

  • Eleanor P
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I do not like the distressed look either. Especially if it looks like something that had fallen off a truck along the side of the road. All beaten and banged up - ugh! I don't mind a little natural wear on a piece of furniture, but enough is enough. You are definitely not alone.

  • Tracy Bromage
    on Jun 28, 2013

    See you are not alone, although I love distressing things a little goes a long way. It doesn't look cheap if its done correctly. Each to their own.

  • Lori Choman
    on Jun 28, 2013

    You're not alone! I don't mind being a hater! I really don't like it! Natural wear and tear yes, but taking something and beating it up NO NO NO. I do not understand why something so tacky is all the rage right now!

  • KrysFL
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I love everyone's comments and opinions! @Minuet Stephens that is a really cool design.. if you do end up doing your table like that, please be sure to share the pictures on here! :) @Porta Verde Studio nice job on your buffet.. IMO the amount of distressing you have accentuates the piece, doesn't take away from it. :) @KMS Woodworks I agree with you completely... and its unfortunate that nowadays, seems quality has definitely taken a back seat over price/availability. Such is the world we live. I wonder, too, if maybe this revived trend is more popular by region as well. I say that because I noticed that all the Floridians (me included) who commented here, all lean towards a non-distressed look. Thoughts? Thank you again to everyone for commenting! Keep them coming. :)

  • Marsha B
    on Jun 28, 2013

    If the *distressed* look is from a piece that has lived long enough to come by it naturally, then I love it!! But if it is wood that has been burnt, hammered, etc. Then I am beside myself with "Oh Please, give me a break!!"

  • Tammi V
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I think it depends on what you like. I also think it depends on the piece and how it is done. Sometimes things are damaged beyond making them look like they did when they were new. I think you have to let the piece speak to you.

  • Dol191312
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I'm old enough to have seen this fad come and go many times. Personally I don't like so much of it.

  • Barbara W
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I don't mind an artfully refinished piece - but most of it is crap.

  • Maxine B
    on Jun 28, 2013

    really not fond of distressed pieces; at least not for indoors. I agree with Barbara W.

  • Pat Dareneau
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I like shabby chic for the beach. not so much for distressed

  • Christine
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I like old furniture that's 'distressed' because it's been used for a long time. You can always tell the purposely distressed furniture, and it looks fake. Guess that makes me a hater too.

  • Diana K
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I always think it has a place. I personally do not "distress" my furniture on purpose. I have some older pieces & those are "distressed" because they have been used & left in their natural state.

  • Porta Verde Studio
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Also, what does everyone think of the chalk paint craze? This is not a good finish if you want a fine finish since the wax that gives it any kind of sheen wears off and does not give any substantial protection against moisture, etc!

  • Gordon
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I feel that there is no furniture that cant be rebuilt just like my mother in law was a bout to throw away to kitchen chairs when I told her I could make a bench out of it she said sure so i brought them home and getting ready to build it so that is my feelings on this.

  • Jeanine
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I like painted furniture, if its just distressed a little on the corners its okay, but I don't do that to mine when I paint it, I like more of a nice, clean paint job. I don't like it when it's been overly distressed on purpose, it looks like it has some kind of fungus when it done that way.

  • Karen Visavati
    on Jun 28, 2013

    don't like stressed looks nasty

  • Leah Mills
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Not really a fan!

  • Dorothy Melosky
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I like a nice, clean, finished look when I have painted. Distressed or antiqued is okay BUT, no ragged paint chips, please.

  • Jo A
    on Jun 28, 2013

    No , thanks. I have old furniture but not purposely distressed.

  • Anne Holcomb
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I agree to a point, some of these pieces that are salvaged are on the way to the dump and are saved for these projects. So in a way we are helping recycle but I do agree that some pieces should be left to original finish especially antiques.

  • Brenda S
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Actually to be honest, I like brand new furniture the best, lol. But I don't mind when an old piece is redone if it's done well. But I am not into the pulled out of a dumpster look either. I guess that is just my taste. Some love the early Americana look, some like the ultra modern, some like mid-century modern or shabby chic. I however love traditional the best, with a little bit of French country thrown in. I think everyone should choose for themselves, because we all know what makes us happy. I like looking at all the different styles of decorating, but when it comes to living in my own home, I know that I love beauty with rich woods, warm tones and elegance. I'm sure that doesn't appeal to everyone and that's OK. That is why it's called "taste", and we each have our own flavor. To each his own, and happy decorating to all!!!!

  • Leona
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I am with you 100% Looks like it was not taken care of, can not stand it.

  • Pam Kelley Sargent
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I thought I was the only one who disliked it, I know that distressed and shabby chic are the "thing" right now but my problem is I grew up with furniture in this condition, not by choice either. The 6 of us would try painting it (spray paint not good) .We even tried contact paper. I cannot understand why people choose it and call it attractive.

  • Bunny Ryan
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I agree! A little distressing when it looks like it was naturally done is fine. But that dark stain or dark wax usually just makes the piece look dirty! I think the old wood furniture should be recycled and used over again. New furniture is a lot of plastic finish and will never last, plus it won't ever look as classy.

  • Cheryl Embaugh
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Personally, I have stripped enough layers of thick, ugly paint from beautiful pieces of solid wood furniture and cannot stand the look of any type of paint on wood, distressed or not, so its stain and poly for me all the way...

  • Leslie D
    on Jun 28, 2013

    There has to be more "chic" than "shabby" in my opinion. I like distressed pieces, but I don't want them to look like they belong in the trash.

  • Dani Byrne
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I got kids. I got cats. I don't need to buy FAKE "distressed" furniture; mine earned its scars.

  • Penny
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I don't like it much either. If it was my own great great grandmother's, then yes, maybe. But to beat up a new piece to look old makes no sense to me. So you don't have old? Have the very nicest best highest quality of new you can afford! It's about the quality, not the age - this coming from a woman married to a woodworker.

  • Sondra A
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I love old furniture but prefer it in its natural state, not purposely distressed. Although, I have seen some pieces done nicely. I don't like the idea of damaging things like that and it doesn't always improve the look.

  • Rebecca
    on Jun 28, 2013

    It always looks unloved to me ~ "distressing" is just distressing.

  • Z
    on Jun 28, 2013

    @Donna, I was talking about the OCD reasoning part, not the distressed part. You said that so simply yet so well @Rebecca. @Kevin, I'm with you all the way. I much prefer to refinish a solid piece of old furniture than buy new.

  • Cheryl
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Less is always more. I definitely agree with you regarding over-distressed pieces.

  • Lynne H
    on Jun 28, 2013

    If the item is distressed due to loving use over time, that's one thing, but that over-done, got-crazy-with-the-sander look? Not in my house! Shabby chic ain't my thing, makes me just want to grab a paint brush & go to work!

  • Ananda S
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Very fond of distressed-by-time furniture. My parents got my grandparents' rocking chair, and the wood on the ends of the arms was bare. That kind of distressed is good. Fake-distressed finishes are...fake-looking. To me, they say "I hate this piece of furniture so much that I'm going to damage it to make it look chic so I can be just that much more fashionable -- I am such a slave to fashion!"

  • Leslie D
    on Jun 28, 2013

    What bothers me more than distressed furniture are words and sayings around everyone's house, like "Live", "Love", "Laugh", "Harmony", etc. I always feel like I'm stepping into a self-help book...

  • Charlsie Sparks Blocker
    on Jun 28, 2013

    It breaks my heart to see beautiful wood painted...I totally agree with you

  • Lori Burke
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I don't care for it. I prefer to see wood if possible and a nice paint job if repairs make that impossible

  • Hughena M
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Never liked it. Personally I feel it cheapens the furniture.

  • In this case, LESS is definitely more.... ♥

  • KrysFL
    on Jun 28, 2013

    @Leslie D lol... love the "more chic less shabby" comment! I have 1 "sayings" sign in my house (its about faith) and I am wanting to do a 'subway art' sign that has all our vacations on it. :) That's what make this world so beautiful, because we all love different things.

  • KrysFL
    on Jun 28, 2013

    @Porta Verde Studio tell me more about chalk paint finishes. I haven't ever painted anything with them but I am seriously thinking about repainting my desk with it because my desk (cheap Target buy) has so many scratches/dents, etc. and I thought it would have the best coverage. I was under the impression that if you let the Johnson's Wax cure for about a week, it gets hard and lasts a long time. Am I wrong? Please educate me before I completely mess up my desk for no reason. lol

  • Janet wender
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I think they are over doing it but I like a little distressed covers up the flaws and gives it history. I also like a fine piece of furniture in a formal room.

  • Leslie D
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I have subway art in my house, too, but it's a "Las Vegas Casino Death List" that I did myself (I'm a bit macabre)...LOL. To each their own, and if the person who lives there loves it, then who are we to judge? It's all relative to personal preference!

    am i the only one, painted furniture
  • Porta Verde Studio
    on Jun 28, 2013

    Any wax finish will eventually wear off. Chalk paint has been used for centuries but Annie Sloan gave it a name. It's nothing new but clever marketing and its ease of use for novice painters. I'm not quite sure why experienced painters would prefer it. I personally like to prep my pieces by priming and sanding to give my finish good adhesion and smooth surface. You can get a similar look with any flat paint with a satin poly over it for 1/2 the cost of commercial chalk paint. Anyway, If your desk is wood and you want to paint it a dark colour, then the best thing to do is give it a light sanding with 180 grit sandpaper and then use a good paint like top-line Benjamin Moore, Para or even Valspar. Then give it a clear coat of poly. I would use oil for the poly if you choose a dark paint. It lays out flatter and is very tough. Put about 3 coats on top of your desk and sand with 220 grit sandpaper in between coats. You only lightly sand for a couple of minutes. Just enough to take any dust nibs off. If your using a light colour paint use an acrylic poly. These paints all have pretty decent coverage though white over dark is always the hardest to cover. Personally, I would use oil paint but no-one seems to like oil though its awesome for furniture and was the industry standard, along with lacquers, for many years. I'm attaching a pic of antique buffet I did with oil paint sanded out to a chalky finish. It was more work but the finish on it (with no wax) was as smooth as silk. If you have any more questions, don't hesitate to ask!

    am i the only one, painted furnituream i the only one, painted furniture
  • Gay Storm
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I think a little bit of the distressed look is ok, but not to the point where it damages the furniture. I have a sofa table that is black with a little distressed look of rust underneath, and it looks really nice. It is also a way to camouflage a piece that has already been damaged. To each his own.

  • Julie Curtis
    on Jun 28, 2013

    I don't like distressed furniture. Awful to paint beautiful wood. And who wants something with half the paint scuffed or sanded off? Or kitchen cabinets. And I don't like pallet furniture either. I guess I'm

  • Accentuations!
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I'm with you! Shabby is ok....CHIC is better. I'm not a big chalk painter either. But my personal taste doesn't reflect on my clients...the customer in (nearly) ALWAYS RIGHT!

  • Kayren Johnson
    on Jun 29, 2013

    Hate it! I grew up with everything being 'distressed' lol, sure dont want it by choice now! But I gotta admit, some people can pull it off quite well.

  • Linda Morrell
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I see nothing appealing at all about distressed furniture. Distressed furniture, to me, is what you'll see at an auction barn. If you like it, you buy it, take it home and refinish it. Now you have a beautiful piece of antique furniture.

  • KrysFL
    on Jun 29, 2013

    @Porta Verde Studio well I am definitely not a professional and I really cant see spending the amount on paint that Ann Sloan wants so I was going to make my own with plaster of paris and regular latex paint. I've never actually "painted" any furniture before except a liquor cabinet which I did in a high gloss red (and I love it) and a garden table (with a faux pantina on it... looked good but not my style.. made $40 at a yard sale on it though). Just thought chalk paint helped hide flaws. hmmmm... back to the drawing board I guess. lol thanks for the advice/input.

  • Donna
    on Jun 29, 2013

    Nope you are not the only one! I don't and have never liked it. I just cringe when I see people go buy a new piece of furniture and take sandpaper and chains to it!

  • Porta Verde Studio
    on Jun 29, 2013

    If its not an expensive piece, grab some good quality paint and go for it. Just put a skim of wood filler on top and sand it out to hide flaws, prime and paint. That's the simplest wasto go. Good luck!

  • Sharon
    on Jun 29, 2013

    Saw someone said"not fan of pallet furniture" earlier... I HOPE I am,because I just brought 5 pallets home ~( haha,husband rolling eyes & shaking head again) and want to make something... I've loved so many pieces seen on here since I discovered hometalk...good thing about pallets is they are already DISTRESSED and old,so I have a good chance of making something that looks better than original... plenty of great ideas from you folks ,just have to decide which one to try first & get started THANKS YOU GUYS!!!

  • Yetunde Rodriguez
    on Jun 29, 2013

    @KrysFL I love chalk paint! I've used it a few times and mix my own. I made a video describing how I mix mine here: http://afromartha.com/how-to-mix-your-own-chalk-paintnew-video/ I like the natural look of some distressing, but I'm not big into the shabby-chic look.

  • Zora read
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I have used paint to distress some of my furniture, but I never never cover a beautiful piece of wood. If it is in a sorry state, I will clean it up and refinish it. I only ever do a paint job on cheap melamine or mdf furniture that I think would just look a bit 'boring' in its natural state which for me is usually second hand so probably unloved as well.

  • Rita and Cane
    on Jun 29, 2013

    No, you are not the only one! Authentically distressed? Sure. Fake distressed? Never.

  • Margaret leavitt
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I also do not like distressed furniture. I have no reason why it just does not appeal to my senses. I do love painting old wood a light color. I wish I knew how to do those lovely big cabbage roses you see talented people add. I think it looks beautiful. But, light fresh paint is the next best thing. We don't all have to like the same things. That's what makes sites like this so much fun. Seeing the thing we would never have thought of or may never do but you are in awe of it anyway...

  • Deborah R
    on Jun 29, 2013

    It's one thing to paint a piece of furniture from todays discount or big box stores, but totally another to not authentically refurbish a nicely styled vintage piece of furniture unless it is beyond returning it to it's natural beauty and patina. I have painted and distressed pieces for customers and friends to their requested distressed application and it bothered me so much that I offered to buy one of the pieces! The booking of the venir was beautiful and the thought of painting over that just didn't sit right with me. The piece is now a beautifully retored bedside table in my bedroom, saved from its stree of being distressed!

  • Judi M
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I'm right there with you. I've seen a few pieces that were sanded just a little in a few areas to show a bit of color underneath. I thought that it was cute, but it's not me

  • Saundra K
    on Jun 29, 2013

    We just had an antique buffet 'rebuilt' and painted. Why painted? Because the 'beautiful wood finish' was not; neither beautiful nor wood! A hundred years ago someone had used a roller and a circular wood block to roll on a 'faux' woodgrain...looked cheap and horrible...some thought it was real wood; when taking the piece apart we found the evidence of a hundred years' ago 'faux wood' attempt, and it was ugly/ghastly. SO much nicer to have grandma's antique buffet PAINTED!

  • I Play Outside The Box
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I love painted furniture...and I love it when it is distressed some too. That's because I love more primitive style furniture though. I do appreciate the look of furniture that isn't distressed too...it is just a personal preference to each individual and I say do what pleases you because it will always please someone else too. Happy furniture finishes to everyone. :-)

  • Brenna
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I prefer to refinish and retain the original beauty of the furniture

  • Kelly
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I don't like the over-distressed look either. I prefer to enhance the beauty of the piece than to have the distressing be all you notice.

  • Cheryl1957
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I hate distressed furniture

  • Beverly
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I like the look of light distressing, not the "chippy" look. But once I paint a piece and it looks so pretty, I can't bring myself to scratch it up with sandpaper and make it look like it needs a paint job!

  • Colleen Novosel
    on Jun 29, 2013

    No, you aren't the only one, I don't like it either :)

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Jun 29, 2013

    @KrysFL I often wonder if the whole "shabby chic" / distressed furniture trend is a subtle cry out for a simpler lifestyle or "remember when" kind of thing. Life in the good old days of Mayberry with Sheriff Andy, Opie and aunt Bee.

  • KathrynElizabeth Etier
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I like distressed stuff in other people's homes, but it's not for me. I think we've seen way too much of it, so it's hard to create a piece that would be unique. I DO have a few chippy items, which I like, but they are chippy with age and I can't take the credit (they're outdoors). I've taken a few horrible pieces and given them character and life with fresh paint, but there's no way I would take a chance and go shabby with them after all the work I put into making them look chic (at least to me).

  • Brenda Barton
    on Jun 29, 2013

    If I can't go with the natural wood look and varnishing, I prefer to paint it to match with my interior. Hate distressed look.

  • Loribeth
    on Jun 29, 2013

    You're not alone. I do not like the overly chippy look. I also don't like it when people do a poor paint job and then try to pass it off as distressed. Sorry, streaky, uneven paint does not equal a custom faux finish. It is just a bad paint job.

  • Karen
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I'm not really into that heavy shabby look. I have light oak tables slightly distressed from the factory, with aged iron look legs and frame. It's perfect because the Maine Coon we have likes to put a clawmark or two once in awhile, so it blends in. Some antique pieces compliment here and there but those can be overdone too. Some peoples houses are SO antique full, they look like a store.

  • Helen
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I do not like distressed furniture either. To me it looks like it needs to be either thrown out, refinished or painted. I like the clean look not the shabby look.

  • Gail Gray
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I also hate the distressed furniture or anything that looks like it needs paint look!!!!!!!

  • Ruth Martin
    on Jun 29, 2013

    I am not into them but in some rooms they do look ok like a mountain cabin.

  • Karin Graham
    on Jun 29, 2013

    i dont care for beatup looking furniture, i like then shiny and refinished, shabby chic in white maybe if it dont stand out to much or look like junk

  • Sharon Snider
    on Jun 29, 2013

    Definitely not the only one, I don't even like shabby chic...just looks shabby to me. Sorry designers. :(

  • PATTY
    on Jun 29, 2013

    It's all about personal preference. Some people like modern style furniture, some french style and some distressed style. Mid-century modern is coming back in vogue and some will either love it or hate it. This has been the case for eons, that's why furniture stores offer different choices. I happen to love the fact that you can rescue a good, solid, quality piece of furniture with an awful and abused finish and using a little paint make it new again!

  • Marci N
    on Jun 29, 2013

    Actually its great that we all are different. How boring it would be to be the same. I kinda like it all. Its fun. But am a real fan of colorful things. White, well lets say it usually doesn't stay white long.

  • Traci
    on Jun 30, 2013

    It appears that you are not alone. I like to paint and glaze and very lightly wear a piece but I don't like the pieces that I have seen with 4 or 5 different colors, then glazed and then sanded. It just looks like you left a piece of furniture out in the rain for a few years. This was an interesting question, I thought I was the only one not thrilled with the super distressed look.

  • Kimberly Noelle
    on Jun 30, 2013

    I LOVE distressed furniture. I think it gives a piece a well traveled and aged look. Some hate it, some like it. I'm not fond of furniture that looks to clean and sleek or shiny because it's just not me. However, depending on the way the piece has been styled and decorated around can make a huge difference on how I feel about certain painted,distressed or non painted pieces. I think a well styled room can make any kind of furniture finish or piece look good. I do a ton of distressed furniture and my husband doesn't get it but it's like art. Some art I just don't get and others find them beautiful. I love how @Marci N put it..."it's great we all are different."

  • Tavia Hollenkamp
    on Jun 30, 2013

    Distressed furniture looks like poverty to me, and I've seen enough of it to last me a lifetime.

  • Kelly Christianson
    on Jun 30, 2013

    I'm not a fan of spotless and shiny furniture, but I don't care for the 'primitive' look. I don't mind a little wear and tear, but if it looks junky, I don't want it. I would rather paint it.

  • Debbie G
    on Jul 1, 2013

    Oh boy, am I glad to see this post! I was sure I must be the only one that didn't like it much. If I am going to the trouble to paint something, I want it to look like I painted it. Although I have seen a few pieces that look good.

  • I go both ways. I do not, however, like rough chippy furniture that catches my clothing and is difficult to dust. I like a time-worn natural look. That said, I also like a nicely painted or varnished (especially cherry wood) with a natural low luster finished look.

  • Brenna
    on Jul 2, 2013

    this is just another "phase" it too shall pass sooner the better for me

  • Judy
    on Jul 2, 2013

    I like old pieces with the original distressed, aged finish, but rarely like faux distressed finishes. I have revived old finishes with shoe polish, but don't paint and distress.

  • Carol G
    on Jul 2, 2013

    I dont care for the distressed look. If it is old or antique and it is distressed that is fine but will not go out of my way to distress things.

  • Carol G
    on Jul 2, 2013

    I totally agree with Judy

  • Judy
    on Jul 9, 2013

    I don't care for it either. Another thing I dislike is people taking beautiful wood furniture & painting it!

  • @KrysFLI love both. It all depends on the total look of the area that is being decorated. I like to mix both together. I don't like everything distressed, but some distressing done well has a certain warmth to more contemporary and clean spaces....my favorite designer on HGTV is David Bromstad and as contemporary as his designs are - he has a finisher that works with him to warm up and add interest to his spaces. It is all personal style/taste as it should be! Everyone is unique and so are their homes! :-)

  • TJ
    on Aug 18, 2013

    I don't even like the word "chippy" and "faux" distressing looks fauxny to me. I love old, vintage and old style but stores are now selling new pieces for new (high) prices for stuff that looks like it came from the trash dump. And white shabby chic can be very nice to look at but I wouldn't want to live there. @Marci N says it one way, I say the same "different strokes for different folks" and vive la difference.

  • Donna
    on Dec 31, 2013

    Every time I see a piece that is distressed or "shabby chic" I want to paint it. I want things that look neat and clean, not old and grungy.

  • RayRay
    on Dec 31, 2013

    I'm happy to see others feel the same way I do. Whenever I see a distressed kitchen or furniture it makes me so sad for the tree underneath it.

  • Judy
    on Jan 1, 2014

    I think most of it would look best sanded, stained with a good wood stain & varnished....in other words restored.

  • Meburke
    on Jan 2, 2014

    ANYONE can "buy" new furniture.Distressed,worn pieces add instant character to any decor,a lived in look not from a showroom..I love Annie Sloan

  • Judy Parkey
    on Jan 2, 2014

    I like painted furniture but I don't like heavily distressed furniture. I never have.

  • Wanda sinnema
    on Jan 2, 2014

    No you are not the only one..I love the worn look, like its been passed down from your grandmother.. few dings here and there, sort of thing..but some of it has gone over the top. I love the shabby sheek, retro - where they repurpose a dresser by removing a drawer or two and adding baskets, and antique pieces, as well as modern-sometimes...but heavily distressed-- NO.

  • Katherine Lundgren-frias
    on Jan 2, 2014

    I have seen some beautiful distressed furniture, but I don't like it when it actually looks like it was distressed on purpose. I like the look of old, but not beat up and/or damaged.

  • Faye Wood-Bailey
    on Jan 2, 2014

    Love the green one. Do NOT like the one from Houzz. Too much distressing for me. :-)

  • Kathy B
    on Jan 2, 2014

    I like what you did with the piece shown. I don't like distressing or the beat up look either.

  • Debra
    on Jan 2, 2014

    I agree with you. The green dresser looks very nice but the other I do not like. It looks like it needs to be refinished.

  • Terrie Kaufman
    on Jan 2, 2014

    Here is the problem I see with distressed furniture or any refinishing! We have every option in Home Depot and Lowe's to purchase those products that do the job but we only have a hand full of people who know how to use them to their best advantage. Just because I am an interior designer does not make me a furniture refinisher! <grin>

    • Z
      on Jan 2, 2014

      @Terrie, you hit the nail right on the head. I think that's why distressed furniture is so popular. Not everyone has the patience and the talent it takes to restore a piece of furniture to it's original glory, but pretty much anyone can paint and distress a piece of furniture. After all the meaning of the word distressed is for something to look worn and old.

  • Sherrie
    on Jan 2, 2014

    it depends on what you like. Everyone has different taste. For me I was always curious about stain I watched my grandmother stain her table, but with paint...it has become a art. I have seen some so good it truly mimic's real old furniture. It has become a art. This was also brought on by women. They are the ones that has changed the direction of the design world because of living within our means, it has given a voice to expression and art. I am thrilled with everything! Stain, paint, chalk paint, everything. Foiling, faux foiling, stenciling I am thrilled with the changes. There are so many people I admire! I am also thrilled with wood, and learning the way men have expressed it. So my world is new and exciting, every time someone post their new ideas they open a world to so many people. You see it as one thing...I see art! And I am so grateful!

  • Penny
    on Jan 3, 2014

    I can't stand distressed furniture. If I own something I want it to look like it was well cared for! Not to mention if it is an older piece - taking care of it will prolong its life, not beating it up.

  • Lynn Franger
    on Jan 3, 2014

    I really dislike distressed furniture. I hate to see a nice piece of furniture with beautiful wood painted, let alone distressed after being painted. I see these pieces and think the only way I would want them is to strip them and to refinish them to show the beauty of their wood. Of course there is furniture that isn't made of good wood and looks better painted, but why distress it? Let it get that way with household use. I like the green table, but the ones in the other picture are a total turn-off for me. I could not live with something like that. It would need to be stripped down and totally redone.

  • Cynthia H
    on Jan 3, 2014

    I don't like something that looks like it was at the curb and only dusted off. I like painted furniture that looks "gently" worn, not slammed with chains.

  • Terrie Kaufman
    on Jan 4, 2014

    I think I need to expand on what I said above !Please, don't get me wrong, I ADORE Shabby Chic and distressed, my home is filled with it. What I said was that not everyone can do this look correctly just because they can afford to purchase the product to make a piece distressed and those looking like they need to be put out on the front sidewalk for pickup are winding there way into places for sale and called "art". Not!

  • Julie Benson-Grant
    on Jan 4, 2014

    I'm with the 'dislike' crowd. If I am going to all the trouble to take something beat up already and restore it or repaint it, I certainly don't want to distress it! Some pieces look okay, but frankly, nine times out of ten, I see a distressed piece and I want to restore it!

  • Charlotte Gibson
    on Jan 4, 2014

    I also think too much of a good thing is too much. The second picture is too distressed for me.

  • Cathy W
    on Jan 4, 2014

    Distressed is Disturbing! If the piece has "good bones" think twice about how it would look refinished and three and four times about making a valuable piece Distressed. A good way to ruin an antique or older piece. And can't be undone (especially when beat up with "chains")!

  • Tina Schuman
    on Jan 4, 2014

    Love this piece and what you did with it

  • Irish53
    on Jan 5, 2014

    I like furniture that shows it age with character having small worn spots from being used for years, but to distressed ahead of time looks artificial. I love what you did with the dresser. That green is the perfect color for it.

  • Lisa McDaniel
    on Jan 5, 2014

    I myself don't really care for distressed furniture. Unless there is no hope of refinishing/ or if it isn't worth the cost. Another of my thoughts, I don't understand why people take beautiful antiques and distress them. Or tear them apart to make into something else. It seems it would take away from the value of the antique. Just sayin'.

  • Trisha
    on Jan 5, 2014

    I agree. What do you really see when you look at furniture that is overly done? The craftsmanship and work it took to make the piece or the finish? Sometimes I look at an antique and think of the time and care it took to create it before they had the tools and machines we have today. That is where I find the beauty.

  • Jmarie813
    on Jan 5, 2014

    Yes,I agree 100%..It all looks so fake. .I mean,..how many years are they going to drag that on-?! If you insist on painting over a beautiful wood grain,at least do a nice job. :0)

  • Donna
    on Jan 5, 2014

    I have to say that I have been painting and refinishing furniture and selling it for over 20 years. Long before the internet and social media along with DIY shows bringing it to the forefront and popularity. True it seems the answer for most to give it a rough sanding as opposed to refinishing to original finish making it seem to be the answer. On that I will add it has taken me years to accomplish the look and finish at the professional level of work that I do. so for a great piece to embellish your decor is not something so easily accomplished. It is an excellent compliment to modern and finished pieces show casing them both if combined right. Eclectic design is both popular and keeps these out of the landfill, making a environmental and responsible choice. I take great pride in my work and for those that see this as a quick and dirty finish that is not appealing maybe you haven't seen good quality. To each his own everyone has their own taste.

    • Donna R
      on Jan 7, 2014

      Also, I don't like the distressed piece in the picture above. It's an example of "distressing gone bad". The painted green piece is better. A bit bold for me but better than the distressed.

  • Being Jann
    on Jan 5, 2014

    I love the green little dresser.

  • Patti Bosley
    on Jan 6, 2014

    my husband will not let me use an old piece that is naturally distressed..but if I paint and distress it myself it's ok to use but I do not overly distress things. I try to mimic how the piece would naturally wear...like some of the pricey pieces sold in furniture stores..I don't like overly distressed pieces either

    • Judy Parkey
      on Mar 23, 2014

      @Patti Bosley Comments that begin with "My husband will not let me..." give me a sigh a relief that I don't have a husband...

  • Mary
    on Jan 6, 2014

    This piece has just enough of a used look and is my favorite color. I don't care for distressed furniture either.

  • Porta Verde Studio
    on Jan 7, 2014

    I don't really care for distressed or chippy furniture. I was trained in fine finishes and to preserve the beauty of wood. However, for those making money at this, without the clientele, you cannot make money if your customer won't pay you for your time and expertise. Especially when working with oil products which yield the best result for refinishing. When I paint, I paint a fine finish and try to marry it with some natural or refinshed wood. If the piece has no strong antique value - I may paint it all. Here is an example of my wood/paint combo on a depression-era sideboard that I thought was a good compromise.

    am i the only one, painted furniture, Walnut sideboard refinished and painted with black satin oil paint
  • Donna
    on Jan 7, 2014

    Thank you for that, I think people just haven't been given the opportunity to see well done pieces. There is a Lot of time and artistic talent with years of learning to develop this look. No it's not everyone's taste nor should it be, but please do not assume all distressed furniture was completed in the back yard with chainsaws and hammers.

  • Donna
    on Jan 7, 2014

    the ones in the picture above have been taken that extra step and do appear extreme, I can see someone not being comfortable with them. I myself think they're great, but I also like the green one. I love different levels of distressing depending on the piece and look you want. As you said look at European antiques to really get a sense of character and history.

  • Adrianne C
    on Mar 18, 2014

    I don't care for it either. I also have a pet peeve about the stuff they put in the yard as potting benches and so forth. They may as well haul it to the dump, it will rot quickly outside.

    • Judy Parkey
      on Mar 29, 2014

      @Adrianne C I understand where you are coming from but I think if it has been painted and sealed it will stand up for several years. For example, about 2003 I bought a small bench from some place like LTD. It's still in my yard and I'm going to paint it this year. It has held up to record breaking 100 degree days, rain, snow, ice, wind and whatever else Mother Nature wants to throw our way...fortunately...no tornadoes.

  • Wanda sinnema
    on Mar 20, 2014

    I agree with those who dislike the EXTREME job on some of these.....I do like the slightly worn shabby look, like it came from your grandmothers cottage. I also have no objections to the look of parts painted if need be to cover damage you can't repair.. or if the wood is bad, etc.. MY QUESTION,,,,, so after this FAD stalls out in about 5-7 yrs how many will be restripping all the stuff they painted..... trends cycle! Just like in kitchen cabinets,,, floors, carpets and hemlines.....

  • Maria Vivier
    on Mar 21, 2014

    I don't like it either and I have seen many pieces....I like my stuff shiny and new!

  • Dolly Sarrio
    on Mar 22, 2014

    I like mine shiny and new but most of all like a fine old piece of furniture restored or in original condition but looking rich. Antiques that have been well cared for. That is most beautiful to me this is a fad that will fade.

    • Judy Parkey
      on Mar 23, 2014

      @Dolly Sarrio What I DO like about it is...I have two pieces that are now "nicer" than they were built to be. One is a confab of wood and laminate but you would never know.

  • Denise Rankin
    on Mar 22, 2014

    Why make something look worn and old? I can not figure this style out. I know some items may look good a little "used", however most I have seen are too much. Just give it time and use and it will be distressed without having the extra work.

  • Katie
    on Mar 22, 2014

    Isn't it wonderful we all have a different view? I happen to like chippy furniture, fine antiques, primitives, and beautifully restored or beautifully painted pieces. It just depends on how it's being used, what room, the decor aesthetic, etc. I have all in my house. I also like that someone can take a piece that would otherwise end up in the landfill, and create a piece that serves a purpose for them regardless of whether it's inside or outside. CREATIVITY RULES!! p.s. I love your little green commode…but I also do like the other examples as well….just depends on where they would be going...

  • Robyn
    on Mar 22, 2014

    indeed ladies... someone might ask me do i like a certain look.. yes, i may like it, would i want it in my home to live with every day that's a different story.. if we all liked the same exact thing wouldn't this be a boring world?

  • Stacy Connolly
    on Mar 28, 2014

    Beautiful! Love the style and color!

  • Patricia W
    on Mar 29, 2014

    personally no, I do not. But, it depends on what a person likes:]

  • Adrianne C
    on Mar 29, 2014

    I was thinking more of antique dressers, buffets, hutches, etc. Some pieces can be completely sealed, and can do well outside, but I've seen some completely destroyed too.

  • Mary Jane Mathews-Wilson
    on Mar 29, 2014

    oh i so agree with you. i dont mind a small amount of stressing to make it look worn but id prefer a nice paint job. i have actually gotten where i prefer painted furniture over woodgrain. who knows how long it will be before i change my mind again lol

  • Debbie Burdge
    on Mar 30, 2014

    I hate distessed furniture..

  • Tracy Famighetti
    on May 2, 2014

    I'm with you...there's a little voice that sounds off in my head..."skip the distressing part and you're good to go".

  • Sheryll S
    on May 3, 2014

    I wonder if anyone knows there is a huge difference to me between antiquing and distressing. I am tired of so much dark, mismatched wood furniture I have in my tiny house.... all hand me downs and some falling apart. IF and when I sand and paint and/or re stain them...... I will not, purposely sand the paint off again. Now I have in the past antiqued (glazed?) some old pieces I got from a second hand store years & years ago...... and I sort of liked it, but do not think I want even that again. Who knows till I do it. I might with some light colors? Again, who knows till I get to that point. But distressed and on purpose. Like these farm house tables that folks actually hammer and beat up..... NO way for me.

  • Hertoolbelt
    on May 3, 2014

    I'm there with you. After I work so hard to get a nice finish, I'm suppose to hit it with the sander...what??? I know it's popular, but I definitely struggle with it.

  • Delores M
    on May 3, 2014

    THANK YOU!! I knew I couldn't be alone -- but I was beginning to wonder ?!? It's okay . . .to a point. I love antiques as much as the next person, but unless the piece is seriously beat up, covering it with paint can be a travesty. Plus, the distressed/"chippy" (hate that term) furniture -- I mean, who the heck treats their furniture like that anyway?? A little wear and tear are normal, adds character. Chipping it up turns it back into a piece you picked up on the side of the road.

  • Rose Hominick
    on May 4, 2014

    Somehow, I like to see that kind f stuff in other people's houses but not so much in mine! Ideally, I like wood furniture in good shape, but mostly what I can afford is stuff that has seen a lot of wear and tear, so I give into the urge to paint for two reasons. It cleans up an old piece that is not looking too good, and my health is such that I can't subject myself to the toxins in the materials used in wood refinishing, and don't have the energy to strip and re-finish. Currently, I have been chalk-painting an armoire that was a wood/laminate combo in deplorable shape. It has taken me the better part of three months and I am not finished with it, even yet! Once it is done, I think it will be a good while before I attempt to redo another peice. My usual one rule of thumb is, always paint a completely wood piece. (The wood/laminate jobee was due to the fact that I sent my hubby to look at the piece and he THOUGHT it was solid, and well, we OWNED it before I actually saw it face to face!) That way, if this whole chalk paint thing is a fad which will pass, you have the bones to strip down and refinish. However, I think the trend is here to stay, although I would NEVER chalk paint wood furniture that is in great shape. The ecclectic mix of painted and stained furniture IS a trend that I think will stand the test of time, and that is what I am going for at the moment.!

  • Terra Gazelle
    on Mar 6, 2015

    I like painted wood..all that wood to me becomes depressing and dark. wood floors, wood cabinets, wood furniture...I like color, I love the look of much loved furniture. Furniture distressed because of use..not the look of 6 months in a landfill. I have seen some many pieces of furniture that had beautiful bones and could be a part of a family again..just paint and relove.

  • Judy Parkey
    on Mar 7, 2015

    @Terra Gazelle It took me awhile to get over the painted furniture hurdle but I did! I have one piece, a wardrobe, that was not built to be a nice piece of furniture. It was built to be a cheap way to store clothes. It is NOW a lovely piece of furniture thanks to chalk paint and wax.

  • Terra Gazelle
    on Mar 7, 2015

    I know what you mean..I have a small armoire and a chest..both cheap. The armoire looked from a distance like wood..it was covered with paper to look like wood..a mess. It is now gorgeous, The little chest was falling apart, which my husband fixed..and now its beautiful royal blue, with tassels for knobs. I use it for dried herbs..

  • Duv310660
    on Mar 9, 2015

    Like anything else in this world, distressing can be done well or done poorly. It's what separates the artists from the people who buy a can of paint!

  • Debra Yates Welch
    on Mar 29, 2015

    I have a feeling that second picture is just a really bad job. I like a little distressing but honestly there is nothing like a beautiful deep mahogany or cherry table or dresser gleaming in a room.

  • Heliane Ripley
    on Mar 29, 2015

    No, you are not. I do not like the distressed look at all.

  • Barbara
    on Apr 9, 2015

    I prefer the non de stressed look. I know there are pieces that just can not be stained again. So a good paint job makes the item continued to be used. Why ruin all that labor? I like a different shade of paint to accent the detail. When a peace is so stressed that it looks like it has not be refinished then why do it.

  • Linda Vicker
    on Apr 9, 2015

    Hate it also!

  • Heliane Ripley
    on Apr 10, 2015

    A little fake patina with waxing is fine, but all those now dead people who once bought the furniture when new, would turn in their graves if they could see their pieces now. ;O)

  • Gayle
    on Jun 18, 2015

    I don't like over-distressed furniture either. I really like the natural patina of age on furniture. I bought an old dresser that I thought I could use. However the veneer started coming off and couldn't be repaired. I ended up using wood filler and then painting the piece a subdued lime like in the picture (which I do like). Nice solution to my problem.

  • Lisa McDaniel
    on Jun 23, 2015

    I don't care for the distressed either. To me an antique should stay that way, unless of course there is no hope of bringing back it's natural beauty.

  • Barbara
    on Jun 24, 2015

    This painted distressed furniture is a fad. When it runs its course how much of this fad is going to be striped and re done back to its original finish?

  • Judy Parkey
    on Jun 25, 2015

    Yes, it's a fad but I've taken pieces of furniture....50-60 years old that were never built to BE fine furniture and is NOW a better piece of furniture than it was originally built.

  • Martinigal
    on Jun 28, 2015

    It is a fad, but most styles are fads, be it clothing, make up or the latest in home design. Looking at the two pieces posted, of course the green piece looks far superior to the two crazy looking pieces, but I think those two pieces are the extreme and wouldn't attract anyone really. I love chalk paint (most associated with distressed furniture) because you can paint almost anything with it and it requires no priming. And now that I've found a great powder mix to make my own chalk paint I can make any color chalk at a fraction of the cost. As far as antiques go, I don't think anyone would take a beautiful well made piece of wooden furniture and cover it up. I do love the way people find things on the side of the road or at garage sales and upcycle them into pieces people actually like and buy! Much better than it landing in the land fill.

  • Larry Jack Jones
    on Nov 21, 2015

    It can be done very badly... not a fan of most of it especially the furniture that screams "I've been distressed!" (maybe a little therapy instead :)

  • Tanya
    on Nov 21, 2015

    I'm starting work on my very first piece ever. I've looked for ideas everywhere, and finally came back to where I started from. Distressing furniture and chalk paint are all I've seen. I don't do fads, I don't do what every other person does, either. I'm staying true to who I am, which means others can continue to distress as long as they want to. And honestly, some of the pieces are stunning. Thanks for the conversation, good luck to all.

  • Niky
    on Oct 10, 2017

    nop me neither
  • Tina Carvelli
    on Oct 17, 2017

    I hate it! Saw enough of the real stuff growing yp
  • 27524803
    on Oct 18, 2017

    I have seen a chest like the top one, painted silver and done with silver leaf, crystal knobs and a mirrored top.... quite nice!
  • Beth Parsons
    on Oct 18, 2017

    I'm not a fan either and don't have any in our home. But I know many people love it.
  • Sharon
    on Oct 18, 2017

    Not my cup of tea. Takes time and skill to refinish a piece, and many don't want to take the time IMHO. I started out in my teens working in an antique shop in Philadelphia on antique row while in art school. If I want an old chippy piece, I would rather travel around the countryside to find a real one.
  • Bry30067963
    on Nov 1, 2017

    thinful it
  • Lou
    on Nov 1, 2017

    I tend to agree. Our entertainment cabinet came distressed make an attractive visual statement but one distressed piece seems enough.
  • Min29356703
    on Dec 2, 2017

    I don't either however, I am newly loving dark glazing put on and wiped mostly off. Looks rich and beautiful.
  • Barbara Baldwin
    on Dec 2, 2017

    I cringe
  • Penelope
    on Mar 10, 2018

    I agree! What is wrong with the warmth and beauty of well cared-for furniture?
  • Fran
    on Feb 9, 2019

    I have been over the distressed look for some time. I am struggling to find new bedroom furniture cause everytime I find the right style and finish, it has been slightly distressed...really! Use to appreciate small accent pieces, but it has too far for way too long.

Your comment...