how to paint pottery barn furniture

  • April 15, 2023

How to Easily and Affordably Paint Pottery Barn Furniture

Pottery Barn furniture is known for its timeless design, quality materials, and durability. Unfortunately, this also means that it can be quite expensive. However, buying used Pottery Barn furniture or repurposing your existing pieces can save you a lot of money. And, if you’re creative and resourceful, you can transform your Pottery Barn furniture to fit your style and color palette.

The easiest and most affordable way to update your Pottery Barn furniture is by painting it. This can be done quickly and easily, with minimal tools and materials. In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps of painting Pottery Barn furniture and answer some common questions you may have.

Preparing Your Furniture for Painting

Before you can begin painting your Pottery Barn furniture, you need to prepare it properly. The following steps will ensure that your furniture is clean, smooth, and ready for painting.

Clean your furniture: Use warm, soapy water to remove any dirt, grime, and wax buildup from your furniture. Rinse with clean water, and let dry completely.

Sand your furniture: Use fine-grit sandpaper to smooth out any chips, nicks, or rough patches on your furniture. This will help the paint adhere better and make it easier to achieve a smooth finish.

Prime your furniture: Apply a coat of primer to your furniture to create a good base for the paint, especially if you’re painting over a dark or glossy finish. This will also help prevent any bleeding or yellowing of the paint.

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Fill any gaps or holes: Use wood putty to fill any gaps, holes, or cracks in your furniture. Sand the putty flush with the surface of the furniture, and let it dry completely before painting.

Choosing the Paint

When it comes to choosing the right paint for your Pottery Barn furniture, there are a few things to consider. First, you want to make sure that the paint is durable, long-lasting, and able to withstand daily wear and tear. You also want to choose a paint that is safe and environmentally friendly, as well as easy to apply.

Here are some popular options for painting Pottery Barn furniture:

Chalk paint: Chalk paint is a popular choice for painting furniture. It’s easy to use, doesn’t require sanding or priming, and dries quickly. Chalk paint is also available in a wide range of colors and finishes, so you can achieve a variety of looks.

Milk paint: Milk paint is a natural paint made from milk protein, lime, and pigments. It’s a great choice for antique or vintage furniture, as it creates an authentic, aged look. Milk paint also dries quickly, but requires a sealer or wax to protect the finish.

Latex paint: Latex paint is a durable, affordable, and easy-to-use paint that’s available in a wide variety of colors. It’s a good option for furniture that gets a lot of use, as it’s easy to clean and maintain.

Oil-based paint: Oil-based paint is another durable option for furniture. It dries slowly, but creates a hard, enamel-like finish that can withstand heavy use. However, oil-based paint can be more difficult to work with, and requires solvents for cleanup.

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Painting Your Furniture

Once you have prepared your furniture and chosen your paint, it’s time to start painting. Follow these steps for a successful paint job:

1. Apply the first coat of paint: Use a paintbrush or foam roller to apply a thin layer of paint to the furniture. Don’t worry if it looks streaky or uneven, as you will be applying multiple coats.

2. Let the paint dry: Allow the first coat of paint to dry completely before applying the second coat. This can take anywhere from a few hours to overnight, depending on the type of paint.

3. Apply the second coat of paint: Use a clean brush or roller to apply the second coat of paint. This coat should be thicker than the first, and should cover any streaks or uneven spots from the first coat.

4. Let the paint dry: Allow the second coat of paint to dry completely before applying any additional coats. Again, this can take a few hours to overnight.

5. Apply additional coats (if necessary): Depending on the color and finish you’re trying to achieve, you may need to apply additional coats of paint. Use the same process as the previous coats, making sure to let each coat dry completely before applying the next.


1. How much paint do I need for my Pottery Barn furniture?

The amount of paint you need will depend on the size of your furniture and the type of paint you’re using. As a general rule, you will need about one quart of paint per piece of furniture.

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2. Do I need to use a primer before painting my Pottery Barn furniture?

It’s a good idea to use a primer before painting Pottery Barn furniture, especially if you’re painting over a dark or glossy finish. Primer helps create a good base for the paint, improves adhesion, and prevents bleeding or yellowing.

3. How long does it take for paint to dry on my Pottery Barn furniture?

Drying time will vary depending on the type of paint you’re using, the humidity, and the temperature. As a general rule, most paints will dry to the touch within an hour and be fully dry within 24 hours.

4. Can I use spray paint on my Pottery Barn furniture?

Yes, you can use spray paint on your Pottery Barn furniture. However, it’s important to use a spray paint that is formulated for use on furniture and that is safe for indoor use.


Painting Pottery Barn furniture is an easy and affordable way to transform your space and update your d├ęcor. By following our simple steps and using quality paint and materials, you can achieve a beautiful and long-lasting finish that will make your furniture look like new again. And, with the answers to some common FAQs, you’ll be well on your way to creating a stunning and personalized home.