To Distress or Not To Distress

THAT is the question! At least it is the question I have a lot of the time. I’m working on a project and it’s looking great with the new paint job, but then I look over at the sander sitting all alone. Is this the project I should pick up that sander for? Or maybe I should pop open that can of glaze?
If something is imperfect anyways, distressing an item can not only disguise some of the flaws but can actually add to the piece.
Glazing adds interest to an item and can really bring out the details.
Although, some items have enough interest and personality without distressing. How does one make that decision, what gets sanded and what gets left alone?
Are you the type to just try something and if you don’t like it re-paint? Or are you more cautious, pondering your options before taking the plunge? I am actually trying to decide this as we speak….with that dresser I posted about a few days ago. Should it be distressed or left alone?
So how do you decide?


  1. I love the distressed look but I guess it would depend on what else you have in the house. Love it all.

  2. Recently I’ve been thinking about this question. I love the look of distressed furniture but I’m beginning to wonder if we’ll look back on it and wonder what were we thinking. I have a pine armoire that I bought at the height of country decor and pickled it in mauve…ewww…what was I thinking? I wonder if I’ll feel the same about distressing in a few years.

  3. I ponder, stress, imagine and then usually do something totally different on a whim in the end.I love your cabinet with the fabric in the back and that picture gallery is wonderful!

  4. I say go for it! If you don’t you will always be wondering what if??? I would do a glaze if you want to be cautious that way you could always take if off and repaint.

  5. I like to lightly distress!

  6. I say glaze it!!!! Its beautiful as is but I think glazing will really bring out the design moree….and you can always repaint 🙂

  7. I just painted a dresser for my son. I painted it a bright red and the look in his room is fresh so I don’t want an antique feel so we opted out of distressing. Really just depends on what look you’re going for!

  8. THe last few things I have painted have been left un-distressed. But, my bar stools are distressing themselves. :o)


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