2017 Contest Overview

Share with your painting friends: Showcase your work and win great prizes by entering in the 2017 General Finishes Design Challenge. Contest entrants will submit entries starting 8 PM CST, July 7, through midnight CST, July 28. Voting begins noon CST, August 4, through midnight CST, August 11. Winners will be announced the third week in August.

Take a deep breath & dive in! Enter the Design Challenge through midnight CST, July 28. 

Join us in this exciting opportunity to showcase your talent in our international upcycling and wood finishing competition. Submit your rescued and refinished furniture, turned wood, and woodworking projects to win amazing prizes and gain recognition within the finishing community.

All contests are judged independently by our stellar panel of judges except for the Mad Scientist Category, which will be determined by popular vote, giving contestants the opporturnity to promote their business across their channels.

Voting begins noon CST, August 4 through midnight CST, August 11. Winners will be announced the third week in August.

15 Upcycling Categories - Product Prizes Open to Mainland U.S./Canada/U.K./Ireland/Europe

All 1st-place winners will be entered into 4 chances to win an Expo ticket, all classes, 2-nights hotel accommodations and all meal events at the Expo. They will also be entered into 4 drawings for a Studio Pro Sprayer from Wagner Spray Systems.

All 1st-place winners will also win 2 cases of GF product in quarts (Stain Blocker limited to 2 cans), PLUS a Gift Box to include an assortment of items from our fabulous sponsors: Royal Design Studios, Bloxygen, Chalk Supply, D. Lawless Hardware, Efex, Grandma's Soap, Saltwash, Wagner, Artistic Painting Studio, Global Art Supplies and Blick Art Materials.

  • Mad Scientist Custom Color Mix (Popular Vote)
  • Jiving with Gel Stain
  • The Classics: Black or White
  • Hobbyist Upcycled Furniture
  • Creative
  • Bling It On U.S.A.
  • Masterpiece Transfers
  • Cabinetry: Paint or Stain
  • Country Chic
  • Mid-Century Modern Makeover
  • Dye Stains
  • Smashing Shades of Gray
  • Anything Goes
  • Repurposed and Unique
  • Pre-made Unfinished Furniture

EUROPEAN TREASURES - Product Prizes Open to Mainland U.K./Ireland/Europe

This category is a special tribute to our friends across the water.

2 Demonstration Video Categories - Product Prizes Open to Mainland U.S.

Open to Mainland U.S. Only

  • Upcycling Video
  • Woodworking Video

14 Wood Turning Categories - Product Prizes Open to Mainland U.S./Canada/U.K./Ireland/Europe

1st-place prizes for the best woodturning project using any finishes of your choice are: 1 case of pints of General Finishes Products, $50 gift card from Woodcraft, 1-year subscription ($97 value) to online woodturning educational video courses from the Studios of Bradley R.M, and promotion of your winning project and business with custom graphics across all of General Finishes social media channels.

  • Turned and Carved Surface
  • Decorated & Embellished Surface
  • Conventional Natural Edge Bowls
  • Conventional Finished Edge Bowls
  • Hollow Vessels with or without Lids/or Finials
  • Pens
  • Lidded Boxes
  • Small Turnings (toys, ornaments, functional, etc.)
  • Turned, Carved & Embellished Legs & Spindles
  • Conventional Spindles & Legs & Spindles
  • Segmented Turnings
  • Creative Use of Color
  • YOUTH & STUDENT WOODWORKING - 25 years or under
  • Beginning Wood Turner with less than one year's experience

7 Woodworking Categories & Prizes - Product Prizes Open to Mainland U.S./Canada/U.K./Ireland/Europe

1st-place prizes awarded for the best hand-crafted furniture or project using at least 1 General Finishes product in the finishing schedule. Each of the top 7 entries will be awarded a raffle ticket to win a Fuji Spray Mini-Mite 3 PLATINUM - T70 Spray system, in addition to General Finishes products. The remaining top 6 entries will receive a Studio Plus Sprayer from Wagner. 

  • STORAGE (cabinets, chests, boxes, dressers)
  • YOUTH & STUDENT WOOD TURNING - 25 years or under