How to Give Your Vintage Armchair a Makeover

7 Materials
6 Hours

Do Dodson Designs gave this chair a fabulous makeover with Dixie Belle Paint products!

I found this vintage armchair in a local treasure store.

After removing the upholstery and exposing the wood, I cleaned the wood first. I used a mix of water and White Lighting cleaner and wiped over the wood surface several times to make sure I removed all the dirt and grime. Afterwards I wiped down the wood with clear water and a soft cloth to remove any residual cleaner that was left on the surface. This is an important step that shouldn't be missed! Any cleaner left on the surface may cause the paint to not adhere properly.

I painted the wood parts of the armchair with two coats of Flamingo Chalk Mineral Paint. Such a beautiful color!

Then I layered Caviar Chalk Mineral Paint over the Flamingo with a dry brush technique. With a 220 grit sandpaper I sanded it back just enough to allow the Flamingo to show through and wiped all the left over dust away with a soft cloth.

I added Best Dang Wax in White with a Premium Chip Brush and it immediately changed the black Caviar to a soft gray and softened the Flamingo to more of a pink color. 

The Dixie Dirt was applied with a soft brush over the white wax while it was still wet and then allowed to dry. A soft cloth was used after the wax dried to remove the excess dirt.

I can’t believe how well this turned out! I hope this inspires you to seek out those vintage armchairs and bring them back to life.

Suggested materials:

  • White Lightning  (
  • Flamingo Chalk Mineral Paint  (
  • Caviar Chalk Mineral Paint  (
See all materials

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Dixie Belle Paint Company

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 9 questions
  • Phyllis
    on Mar 16, 2019

    I want to do this but I need black and white striped upholstery fabric! Where can I find it?

  • Martha Jay
    Martha Jay
    on Apr 25, 2019

    Any tutorials on how to do the reupholstering?

    • Jeanne Martin
      Jeanne Martin
      on Nov 4, 2019

      You can do a search here on HomeTalk or simply Google "How to reupholster". There are lots of tutorials. However, by slowly taking it apart you will learn how to put it back together. Use the removed fabric as the pattern for new fabric. Invest in a good staple gun (electric saves your hand muscles!) and you be ready to go!

  • Dl.5660408
    on Oct 27, 2020

    Beautiful chair, could you please explain what Dixie “Dirt” is and it’s purpose?

Join the conversation

2 of 32 comments
  • Kathrine Anderson
    Kathrine Anderson
    on Oct 29, 2019

    I love that you embraced the roughness of the wood and highlighted it - and I love that cat!

  • Jeannie.mcquaid
    on Oct 27, 2020

    I haven't quite acquired the taste for mouldy looking furniture, but I admire the diligent work to achieve it.

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