Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Dresser in Green

I've had a few people ask me exactly how to go about redoing a piece of furniture, so I thought I would take you through a step-by-step with this little dresser.


The first thing I do is take all the hardware off, including any hinges.  I don't worry about cleaning anything because the next step is sanding.

Second, I sand the piece down.  In this case, it was painted with an oil base paint before and it was chipping and peeling.  I didn't want that under my paint (because it doesn't give a smooth surface to work with and it can cause problems with the finish--which can be a big ol' pain!).  I used a piece of 80 grit (which is very aggressive and should only be used on wood or thick veneer) sand paper on my orbital sander.  If the piece is already wood or had been previously painted and the paint is in good condition you only need to lightly sand (scuff sand) with a 220 grit, just to rough up the surface for adhesion.

After sanding I wipe it down with a tack cloth to remove any dust and fill in the holes from the hardware if I know I'm going to be using different knobs or pulls.

Then I prime.  I've used latex and oil primers and brushed them on, but my new favorite is a primer in a spray can called Painters Touch by Rustoleum.  It's goes on smooth and leaves a nice chalky finish.  I've never had any problem spraying it over anything (some primers will bead up or run if you spray them over certain finishes).  So, I just have to say it one more time--LOVE THIS STUFF!

I normally do two coats of my color (sometimes 3 depending on coverage).  Normally, I sand between coats with 220 grit or a fine sanding pad.  After the final coat I distress (usually with a sanding block, sometimes with a paint scraper) and then sand with at least 320.  If you don't plan on using a clear coat do not sand the last coat of paint because it leaves it dull.  I always clear coat so I always sand the top coat.

Then I do two coats of poly (sanding with at least a 320 btwn coats) usually with a semi-gloss and put the hardware (which I usually end up painting, too) back on.   

And, here's the after....

 I've learned not to make any judgement calls until it's completely done, because distressing and hardware make a huge difference.

It is not quite this bright....having such a hard time with my camera lately and taking pictures in natural lighting.  Any tips???


color = Grasshopper SW

This one's taken (for a Dr. Suess room!!). :)


  1. I'm so glad you posted a how-to! I've had my eye on freshening up a couple things in my house. :)

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