How To Succeed As A Furniture Painter

Authenticity is the key to success
Welcome to my blog! I'm Charlotte, the owner of Not Too Shabby By Charlotte and I'm so so pleased to have you here!
I love this industry!
Its full of so much talent, so much creativity and inspiration.

This blog post is to celebrate our differences. It's to encourage you to be authentic, to be true to yourself, I promise that this is the way to success! Customers can smell a fake a mile off, trying to force a certain style or a certain business plan won't make you happy, it won't make you get up on the difficult days.

You need to be doing something you love.

Don't compare your chapter one to someone else's chapter ten

I know people on every step of their furniture painting journey, from hobbyists, to new businesses, to well established painters.
It's such a dream being a Fusion Mineral Paint stockist as well as a professional painter, I'm surrounded by all levels of painters and I'm constantly learning from you all. 
There's room for everyone, we're all so different! We can raise the profile of the furniture refinishing industry together and all revel in each other’s successes.
As I grow and progress in this industry I want you guys along with me, I want us all to succeed together and find mindfulness and happiness in creativity.
With that in mind I'm going to share with you what I learn along you way. You guys give me so much joy every day, I want to return the favour!

So what choices do we make as a furniture painter?

Do I Paint Commissions or Pieces To Sell?

I love working on commissions! I love collaborating with customers, getting to know them and coming up with a unique design that's just for them. That's my comfort zone, for some painters this isn't their cup of tea. Some painters like the freedom of working on a piece without a brief, then putting it up for sale. This terrifies me though! If I was putting pieces up for sale I wouldn't dare do anything other than paint them all grey...I'd be so bored!
There's no right or wrong route, just the route that feels right to you.

What Colour Should I Paint My Furniture?

I know painters that use the same colours over and over, I know painters that always reach for the brights and painters that experiment with subtle variations of their favourite shade. Our customers are as different as we are, they all want a piece of furniture that speaks to them... and a painter that they relate to.
Do what you love and what you do well...the right customers will find you. They're actively looking for you!

What Style Is On Trend?

Are we in the business of following trends? Are we in the business of setting them? Are we in the business of appreciating past trends? That's what I love...there's no right or wrong answer. You make the rules!

What's My Furniture Painting Niche?

Personally, I just love being creative with paint. I studied Textile Design back in the day, so I love texture, colour, pattern. I love learning new techniques and experimenting... but that's my journey not yours.
There are very successful painters out there that have a passion for a certain niche, whether that being MCM furniture, masking tape designs, shabby chic or decoupage, avant-garde or art deco. You can focus on one technique and become the master of that technique. How cool would that be?
On the way to finding your niche you need to try new things. My advice is don't be in such a rush to get to your destination that you forget to enjoy the journey.  Also, who knows, your destination might be different to what you expected.
I truly hope this blog has given you the confidence to be yourself, to not be intimidated by what others are doing and to believe in yourself.  Also, let's cheer each on! 
Oooh, please leave me a comment,  I'd love to hear your thoughts. 
Happy painting Fusionistas!
Love Charlotte xxx


  • Fleur delaney

    Such fantastic advice Charlotte. I’m enjoying experiementing with different techniques to complete my home projects. The workshops are amazing and are helping us have a focus through lockdown and for that we thank you.

  • Sam Carter

    Thank you Charlotte, your blog echos everything I’m currently feeling. Being completely overwhelmed with what my style should be whilst having that constant comparison to other painters work. You are right, we all have to find our own niche.

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