Whitewash painting techniques include stripping, dry brushing and painting. These three methods yield the same look, but the time and level of involvement vary greatly.
The whitewashing technique of stripping is to first return a piece to its base design without embellishments such as paint, fabric or upholstery nails, then cleaned thoroughly before the actual whitewashing is done. The dry brushing technique simply applies the whitewash to the surface without removing old finishes. Painting a surface requires removing old finishes, applying primer and multiple coats of paint. In all of these techniques, distressing the piece of furniture according to personal taste is what creates the whitewash effect.