Sunday, August 26, 2012

Painting Porcelain Bathroom Fixtures

Does it ever amaze you that when you watch a home improvement show on TV everything goes smoothly:  the project is complete quickly?  Well, my old 1888 house did not get this memo.  In fact, I think it does everything it can to ensure that every project I do take 100 times longer than it does on TV.  How about your house?

I am currently working on our downstairs bathroom.  One of the challenges I faced is the porcelain fixtures.  The nice smooth finish is so worn that even if I get them clean, they are not shiny and bright.  They just always look dingy.  Here, take a look at my toilet paper dispenser.

You might say, just remove it and get a new one.  Well, this is MUCH easier said than done.  Why?  This fixture, along with the other fixtures in this bathroom, are plastered in.  Yup?  Removing these fixtures create a TON of work.  So, how about just painting over them?  Check out what I did.

First, with some purple scotch brite (it's MUCH more abrasive that the usual green), scrub your fixture.  You want to make sure you remove all the dirt and grime along with "scratching" the surface: just as you would prep any other surface for painting.

Next, you need to mask off your fixture.  I used blue painters tape.

 Now, I had already painted my walls and replaced the flooring so I was afraid I would get paint all over my other improvements (I am using a spray paint).  So, I got out the newspaper and started covering other surfaces.

I actually "papered" a ceiling along with covering the floor to really protect all the neighboring surfaced.  (My husband got a chuckle out of this).

Okay, with the surfaces all covered/masked, it's time to get the paint out.  What I used was actually a lacquer.  For those of you that don't know, lacquer is what used to be applied to the older candy apple red sports cars.  This product leaves a very glossy yet hard coating and it says it's good for ceramic.

Making sure your room is well ventilated, it't time to spray on the lacquer.  (I forgot to take a picture of the bath tissue holder so here's the towel bar).  I sprayed on two coats of lacquer (waiting 1 hour between coats).

Once the lacquer is dry (about an hour or so) remove all your newspapers and the blue painters tape.  Look at how beautiful the toilet tissue holder looks now!

To recap, let's look at the before and after photos!

I'm really pleased with how this turned out and the only cost was a roll of painters tape and a can of lacquer! You have NO idea just how happy I am that this worked out!  I'll be revealing my bathroom here soon.  In the meantime, you'll be seeing some of the many projects I did along the way.

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