Basic Surface Preparation

Basic surface preparation 
Glaze and Glazing

Material descriptions 
Patching drywall 
Paint & varnish removers
Sanding techniques
Sealers & sealants
Solvents & thinners







Find out
how to use the proper paint sheen in your home.

Antiquing silver leaf
The soft glow of slightly tarnished silver.

Rag rolling

Color wash

more decorative techniques...


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Stained Glass Basics: Techniques Tools Projects

If you've ever stood transfixed in front of a glowing rose window or been intrigued by the shifting patterns of a kaleidoscope, you'll be thrilled with these techniques and projects. Choose from 30 decorative designs, including: light-catching lampshades, kaleidoscopes, hanging decorations and suncatches, patterned boxes, windows, and more.

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Antiquing Center Furniture Center Color Center Gilding Center Plaster Effects

Basic Furniture and Object Preparation

Base preparation: definition

The base surface is the substructure onto which any finish painting or decoration is applied. It includes plaster, drywall, wood and metal trim, and furniture in its original unfinished state.

Preparation of base surfaces: Meticulous and thorough preparation of the base surface, whether interior or exterior, ensures the quality and success of any project. Doors and windows, ceilings, floors, furniture and objects, whether to be painted, varnished, or treated with decorative techniques such as glazing, wallpapering or tiling, need to be carefully primed.

5 easy guidelines

To determine the proper base preparation for any surface, use these 5 easy guidelines:

  1. Envision the finished product

  2. Patch and fill

  3. Sand

  4. Prime

  5. Apply base coat

Envision the finished product -

Have a clear idea of what the finished piece should look like.  This will enable you to determine the extent of base preparation you need to undertake. For example; a piece of furniture you plan to treat as a piece of old folk art would not need much preparation as any blemishes or irregularities may enhance the finished product. Conversely, if you are preparing an object for gilding, the slightest irregularity may show up in the finished product and greater attention to surface preparation will be required.

Patch and fill -

Patch any areas that need attention, such as nail and picture hook holes, cracks and chipped areas. Wood fill, such as wood filler , is commonly used for doors, windows, trim and furniture. Use plaster patch or Spackle for wall surfaces made of drywall or plaster.

Sand -

Sand smooth any patched areas. It maybe necessary to begin with a coarse grade of sand- paper (i.e., 100 grit) then finish area with a finer grit (220 or 340 grit). On wood surfaces always sand with the grain.

For sandpaper descriptions and uses, refer to artSparx sanding resource.

Prime -

Use appropriate primer to seal patched areas.

To determine the correct primer to use, refer to the artSparx primer resource.

Apply base coat –

Apply base color to surface. Type of product used for the base color, oil-based or water-based paint, depends on the final treatment being achieved.

For decorative techniques and finishing suggestions, refer to the artSparx archive.


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