Asked on Feb 16, 2016

How to tone down the white

by Cindra1005
Hi all!, So I have these 2 pieces I purchased from a friend, dresser and an armoir, both pieces I use for all my craft items. Finally got around to painting one of the pieces, I want to tone down the white a bit. I painted in chalk paint (homemade) and I did one coat of clear wax on it. I want to distress it, but it's just too "new" looking. What would you guys do? The yellowish pic is the original color of the piece, the white is 2 coats of white chalk paint, then of course finished product. Looking for some guidance!!
original color
2 coats chalk paint/white
  13 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Feb 16, 2016
    How long has the wax been on the furniture? You may have to wipe it down with a dab of mineral spirits on a soft rag first should you decide to either repaint with possibly a gray for the tone down or simply removing some of the white. Thepaintedpurplelady has a lot of great answers for those involved in painting projects.
  • Cindra1005 Cindra1005 on Feb 16, 2016
    just did it last night
  • Cindra1005 Cindra1005 on Feb 16, 2016
    I def don't want to repaint it tho! Hi Janet!
  • Nancy Nancy on Feb 17, 2016
    You will have to "remove" the wax... mineral spirits should do it, but I agree with Janet Pizaro thepuplepaintedlady is a great place to start.... after all the wax is removed, I would put a light was on the top in the browns, you can either use acrylic paint watered down, brush on, wipe off or.. mix paint with a glaze... the watered down acrylic paint i find is the easiest to use... you can then either re-wax or put a polyacrylic top coat for a finish.... general finishes makes a good one...
  • Michelle Leslie Michelle Leslie on Feb 17, 2016
    Hi, have you tried adding Gilder' Paste to the clear wax and waxing again? Gilder's Paste comes in many different colors and mixes nicely with the clear wax. We used a silver gilders paste to distress our kitchen unit and it worked like a charm
  • I would also remove the wax with mineral spirits. Let it dry for a day before putting a wash over top with a watered down solution of the brown colour you used on the panels. Once you've applied the wash, tag a rag and rub off most of it. The wash will settle into the crevices and give it an aged look. The white is too stark against the brown panels and this will tone it down a bit.
  • Cindra1005 Cindra1005 on Feb 17, 2016
    Thanks all! I was thinking I had to wax it before applying a dark wax or stain in order for it to "tone done" easily. ugh! So if I were to do a wash, it's as easy as watering down the brown color and applying like a stain? Where can I find Mineral Spirits? Thanks all
  • Cindra1005 Cindra1005 on Feb 17, 2016
    Found the purple painted lady with good info. Basically I can keep the clear wax on and dark wax over by making a "wash" with dark wax and mineral spirits. So that is what I'm going to try. I mean if worst comes to worst, I can just repaint it right!??! ugh
  • Pat whitmus Pat whitmus on Feb 17, 2016
    Be sure to repost so we can the difference! :)
  • Elaine Elaine on Feb 20, 2016
    You're already near completion of a nice piece!! Leave the clear wax on, buy a jar of brown wax. (Michael's has it.) Apply with a foam or regular brush, then wipe off excess with a clean rag or cheesecloth (from a Dollar Store). The dark wax will stay in the recesses and tone it down. Just make sure you have already buffed the clear wax to a sheen OR the dark wax may "stick" to the clear wax and be difficult to manipulate/wipe off. Good luck!
    • BP BP on Jul 08, 2016
      Going to do a mirror to hopefully get this look, but not really that familiar with using waxes. What type of waxes are being used for things like this?
  • Fro4614984 Fro4614984 on Feb 20, 2016
    Why not just give the original piece a white or ivory wash coat. If deep carved areas aren't satisfactory either wipe while applying wash, or add until it's right. Finish with a satin-finish sealing spray.
  • Cindra1005 Cindra1005 on Feb 22, 2016
    ok folks! Here is an updated photo (s)! I made a wash with dark wax and mineral spirits and decided I didn't like how new and perfect it was so had at it and distressed it! I'm now in love! Thank you all so much for your tips and pointers! I think I still need some lessons in the wash process, didn't feel 100% about it but dove in, Pretty happy with the way it turned out and it was my first time doing that! So any tips on doing a wash with dark wax or paint is appreciated! I love step by steps, cuz once I see it I'll remember! Here are the photos, thoughts?
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  • Kathleenwalsh Kathleenwalsh on Mar 18, 2016
    Like the white a lot !I did two dressers in Black with Crystal knobs with gold backing's I was going to do my Jewelry Stand in Black but now I think the white would be nice .This is for my Bedroom white kings size Iron Bed about 40 yrs old black nightstands and now White Jewelry Stand what do you thing please let me know ,thank you