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Painting a slate window sill?

Because the bathroom was busy today I decided to remove the paint from the window sill on the landing. It has always looked awful and I have never done anything with it until now!

The previous paint was bubbled, uneven…it was bloody awful to put it mild. I started out with the Deros as per the first picture. It was layer upon layer of paint and I soon realised a knife would be better. I used a Purdy multi tool and managed to scrape off most of it. The bottom layer was like a resin, it reminded me of my dear old Nan’s furniture and the smell took me back 40 years! Anyway, I scraped off the resin as best I could and could not believe my eyes. The sill was a block of slate! I put a 180 grit on the Deros and smoothed it off.

It would be lovely natural but it is not looking that great. Is there a way to either paint it or perhaps a polish I can use to improve the finish?



That was a good discovery.

I am assuming the photo is showing remnants of paint still?

The overall process I would consider - use a gentle paint stripper and an abrasive pad (not steel wool) to try get all the paint out any imperfections. A brass (as opposed to a wire) brush is helpful for getting in cracks.

Once back to slate, vacuum the surface, and to make sure it is clean, a final spritz of soapy water and wipe off with a sponge.

You could leave it as is, use a coaster or mat if anything is going to be stood on the cill.

Or protect it and enhance the colour with something like HG polish which is satin.

I have used linseed oil but the purpose made sealer won’t attract dust. Older ways aren’t always the best!


There is some paint but some of the image is light coming through the window. I am going to discuss it with the wife, she is keen to leave it natural looking so I may consider a polish.



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