(Photo courtesy of Kate Dougherty)Is there a downside to having hardwood floors? If there is, we Lonny editors have yet to find it. But if I'm being completely honest, I've never loved how my wood furniture seems to get lost in all that brown. The same was true for Kate Dougherty—a Charleston-based interior and set designer (you may have seen her work in a little movie called Moonrise Kingdom)—who wanted to help her walnut furniture stand out against her apartment's wood floors. While most adopt a rug to break up a space, Dougherty took that concept one step further, employing a simple whitewashing technique to brighten her former two-bedroom abode in Brooklyn. Here's how she did it.
1. Combine one quart of Annie Sloan's Chalk Paint in Old White with one quart of water. (Note: 1 can covers about 300 square-feet.)
2. Maintaining an even consistency, roll one coat of paint on your floors and let dry for 2-3 hours; then, roll on another coat. Paint should be diluted enough for you to see some cracks and the grain of the wood.
3. After both coats are completely dry, use steel wool to sand down a few random spots to create the appearance of distressed wood.
4. Sweep up any paint dust, then roll on two coats of Annie Sloan Floor Lacquer (or clear satin-finish polyurethane).
5. Last, let lacquer dry overnight (at least 12 hours).