What is the best/easiest way to distress good traditional furniture?

I want to distress all of my bedroom furniture and my dining furniture. It is all good quality, but for personal reasons I need to make it look like something totally different. A clean slate, so to speak. I'd like a white, lightly distressed, cottage look.
I am totally unexperienced with this so any help would be appreciated. I don't want to ruin good quality.
Thank you!

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