Crowdsourcing: Top Coat over GF Milk Paint?

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Forum topic by paxorion posted 04-03-2014 12:46 AM 547 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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941 posts in 827 days

04-03-2014 12:46 AM

Topic tags/keywords: humor poplar step stool finishing

I’m down to the final stretch for a step stool project. As a painted piece (it’s made of poplar), I’m enjoying the lovely debate with my wife over the paint scheme (I blame Pinterest), despite the fact that the stool is a birthday present for the our friend’s 3 year old. This delay in painting gives me the time needed to contemplate top coat.

Regardless of the paint scheme (my plan is to use GF Milk Paint), I haven’t decided on a top coat to use. As a kid’s step stool, I expect wear and tear, and wanted to see the LJ community’s votes on which top coat option I should use. Should I:
  1. Put on a water-based poly? If so, which one should I consider getting (GF PolyAcrylic that is discounted at Woodcraft this month, High Performance, Enduro, or some other brand)?
  2. Apply some schellac (diluted SealCoat) and then put on an oil-based poly? If so, what brand should I consider getting?
  3. Scratch any top coat as the milk paint and put on multiple color layers so that wear and tear will be a “feature” of distressing that will add “charm” to the piece?
  4. Claim the project is done and tell my wife that finishing is her contribution to the present? (Then pull out an extra blanket and be prepared to sleep on the couch until I settle on one of the former 3 options)

-- paxorion

4 replies so far

View endgrainy's profile


157 posts in 670 days

#1 posted 04-03-2014 01:10 AM

I would vote for option 3, no topcoat. Last year, I made a few children’s step stools that my wife painted (option 4, but she was ok with it :) We used a spray based poly top coat over one or two, but a year later I can’t tell which ones received the topcoat and which didn’t. I think it’s overkill.

I like the distressed, charm approach. Especially with milk paint.

View paxorion's profile


941 posts in 827 days

#2 posted 04-25-2014 01:28 PM

I finished the step stool project a few nights ago and decided to go with 3 coats of milk paint. Given that I mixed way too much paint, the recipients will have lots of “touch up” paint, should they ever decide there is a need to repair the finish.

-- paxorion

View endgrainy's profile


157 posts in 670 days

#3 posted 04-25-2014 08:20 PM

Nice job on the stools! Sorry I was the only one in the “crowd” to respond. The stools I made were very similar in design – my daughter loves them (we have several for different sinks and bathrooms.) I made some more for friends with similar age kids. Very handy – good job!

View joeyinsouthaustin's profile


1286 posts in 854 days

#4 posted 04-25-2014 09:37 PM

Glad to see you got to the decision without the crowd!! ;) Here is a thread I have really enjoyed on the topic, in case you missed it, like I missed yours.

link with title:

-- Who is John Galt?

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