Hard work, a little knowledge and a few good products are key when refinishing furniture. For the next few Tipsy Tuesdays, I will chat about products I’ve used. The good, the bad and the best products for furniture refinishing.
First off, cleaning and preparing the furniture. If you don’t prep properly or you use poor quality products, the finished piece will look cheap and paint can peel. Not pretty! Here are some of my favourite products for prepping furniture:
Glue: I like to use Gorilla Glue or No more Nails for repairing pieces of furniture. I try to avoid furniture that needs a lot of repair. I try to find the most sturdy or well made pieces to refinish. Less hassle and better end product for customers!
Orbital sanders (like this one) are a must! Especially when you are refinishing something like a table or dresser top. Always have safety glasses and a dust mask on hand, even if there is a dust collection attachment. Safety first! 🙂
Strippers: I’ve used a few kinds, even oven cleaner. I try to avoid using strippers because of how smelly or fumy they can get. My workshop doesn’t have windows, so it’s difficult to air out fumes from strippers and spray paint. I do like strippers that are more on the environmentally friendly side. Some actually smell nice! Like this one:
Cleaning: Unless the furniture is filthy or just chemically stripped, I use plain old water. A quick wipe down with a wet rag or cheese cloth should be good. I use a mild cleaning spray for furniture that needs a little more cleaning.
Primer: I have a love-hate relationship with primer. I totally get that it’s a needed step for certain pieces of furniture, especially for preventing bleed through. My main reason for disliking primer is I don’t like the white peeking through when distressing. But primer can be tinted to any colour so that is a good option. For furniture with a modern look, typically I use ‘paint and primer in one’ latex paints, since they cut out an extra step.
Before starting to paint, determine the style you’re aiming for. Do want it to be antiqued and distressed versus modern and clean lines? Once you have a plan, you can choose the type of primer or if you need to prime at all. For pieces that have a smell (smoke/mustiness) or that may bleed through the paint, I use Zinsser’s Bulls Eye Primer or Shellac. Both are great to use under light coloured paints when painting over mahogany or knotty pine. It reduces the bleed through, orange-ugliness. You can also use Shellac to help milk paint bond to the furniture and prevent a lot of chippyness.
I love painting with milk paints and chalk or clay based paints. Priming is not needed, which makes me love them more! Next Tipsy Tuesday I will talk about paint products I love, the ones I avoid and those I can’t live without!
**Please note: The above opinions and tips are my own through testing products myself.**
Do you prime or just paint away?
If you have other products you like, please leave a comment! Love hearing tips from others!
Until next time!