Refinishing Wood Furniture

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated October 27, 2014)

Have you ever had a piece of furniture that you just loved? I don't mean that you just liked it a little bit, but that you absolutely loved it, no matter how bad it looks, you just do not want to let it go? Most of the time we all come to the decision that we just have to let such a beloved piece of furniture go, and purchase another or different piece of furniture, well instead of doing that, there is another option. That option, as long as this piece of furniture is made of wood, would be to conduct a refinishing project. By doing this, you are going to be able resurrect your dead piece of furniture.

Project Materials:

  • Steel Wool (fine)
  • Varnish/sealer
  • Metal scraping knife
  • Gloves
  • Varnish Stripper
  • Drop cloth
  • Protective eyewear
  • Baking soda
  • Disposable container
  • Cloth rags
  • Oil soap
  • Sandpaper
  • Several disposable, non-synthetic paintbrushes

Steps to the project:

  1. Choose work area, prep the furniture. The first step to this project could be more accurately called a two part step. You are going to first need to choose your work area, and in doing so make sure that it is well ventilated and that there are no open flames of any kind. You are going to be working with flammable materials, and I really doubt that you want to start a fire without meaning to. One of the best places in the home to do this would be in your garage, if you have one. After you have done that, you are going to need to prepare your furniture for work. Do this by removing any drawers and hardware attached to the furniture, and then clean the furniture with some oil soap and a couple of your rags.
  2. Remove old paint/varnish. For this step you are going to need to remove all the old paint and varnish from your piece of furniture. This is going to require that you apply stripper to areas that of the furniture that needs it, being sure that you use one of the disposable brushes. After following the directions as listed on the stripper, then you can use your scraping knife to help remove the paint or varnish, keep doing this until you have completely removed the varnish. Next, use the sandpaper as necessary to create as smooth of a surface as is possible. Clean the area and place a drop cloth (such as old newspapers) before going to the next step.
  3. Stain and seal. Take a look at the back the stain, or paint that you have chosen and follow the directions as printed. Basically, what this means is that you apply the stain and let it set for the specified amount of time, and then wipe off any excess. If you are using paint, then you need to let the paint completely dry before applying the next coat. Keep doing this as much as necessary in order to achieve your desired look. After you have done this, apply the varnish or sealer to your furniture. In the event that you are going to apply more than one coat, make sure that you let the piece completely dry before applying the next layer, as well as using the steel wool to lightly sand the piece of furniture.
  4. Reassemble furniture. After you have completed the previous steps, you are ready to put your furniture back together. Clean up your work area, and you have now completed your project.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

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