Paint projects at home: An expert shares the key to upcycling old items with a pro finish.

Thanks to our brand partner, Dulux

Whether you’re moving into a new home or you just want to give a bit of love to your current one, the best way to refresh a living space is with paint. And I’m not just talking about splashing some colour onto a wall.

I’m talking about upcycling items around the house to create truly unique pieces – pieces that will have visitors asking, “Where did you get that?”

I love tackling a weekend paint project and am always looking for new sources of inspiration, and practical tips that will guide me in the right direction.

Deciding which room or item to transform first? That’s where I need a little help. In an effort to stop procrasti-painting, I had a chat with Dulux painting guru Bonnie Jenkinson about the best home decor items to upcycle and the smartest ways to do them.

It’s not just about walls.

With more and more people getting savvy about sustainability, paint is the perfect way to breathe new life into an old piece of furniture. Upcycling can create a unique item out of an unused or out-of-date object while reducing waste. It could be repainting a vase, a toy box or giving your bedhead a spruce up.

Bonnie also says it can help build your DIY confidence, telling Mamamia: “If you love what you create with a smaller project, you’ll feel more ready to take on a larger project.”

It also helps to have an inspiration guide that pushes you out of your DIY comfort box.  Dulux’s Winter Project Guides contains heaps of practical advice and awesome ideas for weekend projects. From creating an interactive mountain in your child’s playroom and a shiny gold toy box, (see picture below) to transforming your hallway with an upcycled chest of drawers, this guide goes well beyond the wall.


It is all about colour.

Once you’ve decided which wall or object to paint, decide on a colour scheme.

“Colour is extremely powerful – it can transform a room, create a mood and make a space truly personalised to you, so be adventurous,” Bonnie tells Mamamia.

If you’re struggling to pick a colour, grab some colour charts in-store, order swatches online or book a colour consultation with a Colour Designer.

Bonnie’s hot tip for 2019 colour trends? “We’re going to see a lot of mauves, lilacs and purples often used tonally and with great accents. Yellow is also set to make a comeback with shades ranging from egg yolk to citrus green yellow.”

Fancy having a play with colour? Find more inspiration in Dulux’s Winter Project Guides, which includes this hallway makeover below, featuring a glossy repainted shelf and metallic-hued drawers.

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You can add personality with different effects.

Paint goes far beyond just offering different colours in matte, low sheen or semi-gloss. You can also create a design statement with the Dulux Design Effects range.

Fancy creating a metallic shelf or painting a feature wall with a copper or concrete look? It’s actually pretty easy and there are some great online videos to show you how. Designer-style items that look as good as new – that’s sure to impress the lunch or dinner party guests.

Avoid delays with a detailed shopping list.

Once you’ve picked your preferred colour or effect, figure out how many litres of paint you need using the Dulux online paint calculator, then consult the Winter Project Guides for your full shopping list. There are different paint types for different projects or looks. For example, Dulux Aquanamel is perfect for your fireplace, windows or shutters while Dulux Duramax is great for spraying ornaments and available in metallic colours and gloss. In addition to premium paint, you’ll need a range of other supplies like brushes, a drop sheet, masking tape, a roller tray and potentially a Lazy Susan!

Like most things in life, preparation is key.

No matter what your painting project, there’s a preparation guide to help get you started. Bonnie says it’s important not to cut corners if you want great results.


“Unless your surface is already painted and in great condition, you’ll probably need an undercoat,” Bonnie shares. “It helps the paint look fresher for longer by sealing the surface for a better finish. It also reduces the chances of peeling, flaking and blistering while hiding surface imperfections.”

If you’re worried about maintaining the look for long periods of time, take a look into Dulux’s Wash&Wear paints for different levels of sheen that keep that fresh look for longer.

There is a right and a wrong technique.

The best way to get a great finish is to watch online tutorials and always use premium paint and quality accessories. You also need to do things in the right order – but don’t be daunted by that, you’ll get the hang of it quickly.

“When completing a room, start with your ceiling first, followed by walls and finish off with your trims,” Bonnie tells us. “This ensures any paint dripped from the ceiling is covered when completing the walls and trims.” Good to know, huh?

Since we’re all indoors a lot more at the moment, winter is the perfect time to tackle an interior paint project and maybe try something new. You’ll be able to refresh your spaces and relax when the warm weather rolls around.

We hope you’re as inspired as we are.

This content was created with thanks to our brand partner, Dulux.

What’s the easiest paint job you’ve done around the house?


Dulux is focused on inspiring, guiding and providing solutions to all Australians for their painting projects.

Being confined indoors during the winter months, exacerbates the #1 reason to take on a painting project – wanting a fresh look within your home. Because we all have that room that we are not proud of!

Winter is the perfect time to complete those interior projects you’ve been meaning to do. And Dulux has the perfect guides to help you get started. What are you waiting for!