After removing the hinges and chains, the bench got a generous coat of primer. I decided not to sand out all the scuffs on the bench top and feet. I thought the battle scars would complement the smooth, intricate details on the legs.
Now, piano bench, step into my office... err... living room. Just get comfortable on that cheap fold-out table. You may be here for a while... (UPDATE: It lived there for several weeks.)
Anyway, I stayed committed and eventually finished the distressing coat. I had work on it on three different nights (two to finish, one to touch up). Lots of black under my fingernails.
Since I painted/wiped all surfaces rather than just the edges, I had to learn to commit to a direction. Since I used the inside as my 'trial by fire' moment, the lid turned out pretty damn well! It's very reminiscence of wood grain.
Final stage: SEALING! I picked up Rustoleum Clear Gloss to protect my work and really make those nooks and crannies POP. This picture gives you an idea of how much a gloss coating makes (glossed on left, unsprayed on right). The gloss remains tacky for 48-72 hours, so I had to wait to flip it over and do the underside and the other side of the lid.
Close up of the top:
The black antiquing really brings out the details.
One more shot. Now to move it up into my craft room in the attic, where it will never again see the light of day. C'est la vie.