5 Tips to Upcycle Old Furniture with Tjhoko Paint

While little Bella, my husband and I were on Christmas holiday with my parents in our beloved coastal town, Mossel Bay, I found myself utterly deprived of the usual creative endeavors that I get up to at home. I refer to these endeavors as my ‘little projects’, yet my hubby, quite bluntly, calls it a ‘little chaos’. What can I say? My projects tend to follow me around the house… On another note, perfectionism certainly runs in my family and since my dad seemed far too relaxed this holiday, I thought what better way than to bring some ‘madness to his method’! So, I started painting – everything!

Okay, enough giggles for now… On a serious note, I have a lot of experience revamping furniture and I have been very eager to try out our proudly South African Tjhoko Paint, which admittedly my dad had told me about ages ago. I dragged my hubby to the beautiful original Arabesque store in town (they have many stores now) to purchase the Tjhoko Paint that I couldn’t wait to get my hands on. They had painted colour samples of the entire Tjhoko Paint range, so it was easy to select the two perfect colours. I chose Lorraine’s Cream & Pebble Shadow.

After sunset, it was time to transform the hideous pine tables that I had to cohabitate with every summer holiday for the past five years! The more I painted, the less pine I saw and it was just an incredibly satisfying feeling! So don’t just get rid of items that you dislike, everything always has the potential to be something beautiful. Along the way, I had lots of laughs, many mishaps & I even ended up painting myself, my hubby’s feet & Bella’s tail. Throughout the process, I certainly learned a lot and I am so excited to share these tips with you.

Tip 1: Minimal surface preparation required

What I love about Tjhoko paint? No sanding required to prepare the surface of the furniture! Instead, just wipe the entire thing with Lacquer Thinners. How? The easiest way is to pour thinners into a bucket and dip a large sponge into it, then just wipe the entire thing clean! Wait for it to dry!

Tip 2: Use a foam roller to paint the majority of the surface area

I would suggest using a foam roller for painting the majority of the surface area. Only rely on paint brushes for the intricate parts of the item e.g. table legs. This saves a lot of time & creates a professional, store-bought finish. Don’t save on the paint brushes, because if the bristles fall out it gets stuck in the paint on your furniture. Wash brushes with soap & water to re-use.


Tip 3: Paint underneath a ceiling fan for a quick drying effect

The paint dries very quickly! I was able to apply a few coats in only one day. For even quicker drying, try painting underneath a ceiling fan. It works like a charm! I found that the darker colour (Pebble Shadow) required fewer coats of paint, however, the lighter colour (Loraine’s Cream) needed many layers.

Tip 4: The Tjhoko Clear Glaze creates a professional finish

To seal the paint, there is a choice between a Clear Glaze and an Antique Glaze. The directions suggest mixing it with 30% water, however, I mixed the Antique Glaze with around 60% water and applied it with a sponge. I rubbed out the stains that I didn’t like with lukewarm water and a cloth. Even though the Antique Glaze seals the furniture, I wanted the furniture to withstand damage from any possible scenario e.g. a red wine disaster, therefore I applied the Clear Glaze on top of the Antique Glaze thereby creating double protection layers. You don’t have to do that, I will just ascribe my perfectionism to my genetics. I didn’t dilute the Clear Glaze with water at all, I used it straight out of the jar. For varnish, I would always suggest applying it with a brush, it is applied in a thicker consistency and gives the appearance of a professionally finished product. The glossy effect certainly makes the colours pop!

Tjhoko Clear Glaze


Tjhoko Antique Glaze

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Tip 5: Pick a colour scheme for your furniture piece

It is always fun to play around with colours and create two-toned furniture pieces. In the photo above I used a tonal/analogous colour scheme. I painted the legs of the table with Lorraine’s Cream & then stained it with the Tjhoko Antique Glaze which resulted in a warm, brownish-cream colour. I also painted the tabletop with Lorraine’s Cream, however, I sealed it with Tjhoko Clear Glaze only. If you would like to be bold and use multiple colours such as Colour Harmonies consisting of various Colour Schemes, I would suggest using a Colour Wheel. This is to ensure that the colours don’t clash, are either warm or cold and also complement each other, but most importantly that it shows off your personal style. For a quick understanding of Colour Theory, watch this video on How to use a Colour Wheel.

I love the variety of colours that Tjhoko paint provides. It is a quick and user-friendly process. Hopefully, I have encouraged you to start your own painting project soon, and if so, please comment below & let us know what you got up to.

Happy painting people!










Note that statements made and opinions reflected in this blog do not represent those of any of the products or entities mentioned or discussed herein. The blogger is furthermore not a representative or agent of any of the products or entities referred to in this blog. This post is simply written based on the blogger’s personal experience & knowledge. Information in this post may have changed or been incorrect, therefore please click on the links in the text to access the correct information directly from the sources or refer to the list of references provided above.


Posted in: DIY

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