Knowledge Centre

Preparation Tips

At ShabbyAnd… we always recommend you prepare your piece first we believe preparation is key to achieving a durable lasting finish. We know there are others out there that are saying that with chalk paint you don’t need to prep your piece! We don’t believe in this we know preparation is key and want you to have the best results all of the time.

Dependant on material of your piece to how much preparation will be needed!

The three key elements are:

  • Key (lightly sand)
  • Clean
  • Dry

Note there maybe times when you may need to either undercoat or prime

Primers & Undercoats

Key element 1 Wood

You will need to ascertain what is on the wood…

  • Varnish – Looks like it has a light sheen over it. Lightly key the surfaces with 150/180 grit sand paper.
  • Bri Wax - The wood may look matt but slightly tacky, you may also see a lot of dust built up in the edges. We use Autentico Bio Strip, as nothing will adhere to this until your piece is stripped back.
  • Prior to Bio Strip we spent hours using white spirits and fine wire wool.
  • Linseed oil/oils – more matt than varnish and not tacky. Follow the same process as Bri Wax.
  • Laminates, melamine, veneer, highly lacquered or painted – We would key the surfaces with 120/150 grit sand paper
  • Tip: We would highly recommend using Autentico primer or Autentico undercoat on these surfaces.
  • Some dark woods or furniture that is heavily knotted we would also recommend using Autentico primer or Autentico undercoat on these.

Key element 2

After your piece has been through the first process you will need to thoroughly clean with diluted Autentico Omniclean. (if you have sugar soap this would work also)

Rinse with clean water and allow to dry.

  • Tip: Try not to soak the wood.

You are now ready to:

  • Undercoat or Prime if required
  • Paint your piece 😀

Interior Woodwork

We would recommend you carry out the same processes as with furniture preparation.


  • UPVC – Follow the same process’s as the veneer preparation.
  • Brickwork – Clean surfaces, make good any cracked chipped areas, allow to dry Prime then Paint.

If using Esterno Mura you may not need to prime

View Datasheet
  • Tip: If there is any silicon areas these will need to be primed.

Fencing & Outdoor Furniture –

  • Clean with Omniclean
  • Allow to dry
  • Prime
  • Paint

Undercoat or Primer

If you are working with the Autentico Vintage, Velvet or Venice range then the Autentico undercoat is the perfect complement and has a built-in primer.

If you are working with the Versante range then the Autentico primer is recommended.

What is bleed through?

Sometimes when we paint we may see some brown/reddish patches, this is when the woods tannins are released and show through the paint. To combat this you will need to give your piece a coat of either Autentico Undercoat or Primer.

What are Tannins?

Tannins can either be colourants that were injected into the woods and the manufacturing stage (especially years ago) to achieve deep dark coloured woods. Or things such as pen marks, coffee, tea and red wine are high sources of tannins.

  • Tip: We always recommend the correct preparation is made to prevent this. Sometimes you may not see this until you wax or use a decorative product as these can cause this to show at the end of your project.

Wax Varnish or Sealer These all have a Matt Vinish

Wax – Wax helps to seal your paint and acts as a protective barrier on furniture, against marks and drips.

  • Tip: You will still need to take care with your furniture as things like hot cups or heavy spillages can mark.

Varnish Autentico furniture varnish is water based and helps protect your furniture from harder wear and tear areas such as TV units and table tops.

Sealer Out of all the finishes Autentico sealer is the only one that is child safe and meets E1307 regulations. We would recommend using this when painting with Vintage chalk paint on children’s furniture or toys.

Sealer can also be used over Autentico Velvet for walls to help protect paintwork from fingerprints etc.

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What Our

Customers Say...

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Hi Ann, Just wanted to say a huge thank you for my nest of tables. I am so pleased with them and the colour is perfect : ) I will definitely be after some more furniture in the future. Many thanks. Natalie


I am over the moon with my bureau :) thank you so much....!!!! Ill be back with more Furniture Xx

Carly Stokes West Mersea

Really enjoyed the workshop, thanks Ann. Really looking forward to putting techniques into practise! Have used the "Library Red" and love the result!! Looking forward to the next workshop.

Carole Taylor

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