How to Paint a Vintage Look

How to Paint a Vintage Look. When buying new furniture for a home, you may be disappointed by how new it looks. The paint may have a gloss and sheen that the rest of the furniture and cabinets in the home do not have. Distressing the wood is often undesirable because of the grain of the wood, but a fresh painting on the wood can create a vintage look to match the rest of the furniture in the home. Either a quick painting, or the scrie technique, will create the look of brushed paint that has been around for years.

Putting a faux finish or using the strie painting technique creates a vintage look.

Things Needed

  • Base color paint
  • Brush
  • Glaze
  • Glaze brush
  • Stipple brush
  • Wide brush

Step 1

Paint the panel of wall or furniture with a base paint color by using a brush or roller. Allow the paint enough time to dry and apply a second coat if necessary.

Step 2

Mix together the glaze and the base color together in a bucket or paint tray. Add more glaze for a stronger effect or add more paint for a lighter glaze effect. Paint a test strip of wood your base color and test the glaze on the strip until it is correct.

Step 3

Apply the glaze to the surface of your wall or piece of furniture using a glazing brush. Move your brush over the area a second time, brushing in an "X" pattern to make the strokes varied.

Step 4

Tap a stipple brush over the surface using a semi-circle motion with the wrist to blend the brush strokes. Wipe the brush occasionally to remove excess paint.

Step 5

Move a brush over the surface, going up and down vertically with a locked elbow to 'strie' the surface. This makes the wood look aged.


  • This Old House: The Secret of Pro Painters
  • This Old House: Decorative Painting Technique: Scrie
  • Cal Finder: Tools and Tips: Creating a Vintage Look with Paint