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Help painting bedroom furniture

Posted by realtorrose (My Page) on
Wed, Jul 28, 10 at 20:37

My cherry bedroom furniture is 36 yrs. old and needs a facelift. I have a 4 poster bed, nightstands and a triple dresser. I love the 'cottage' look and would like to paint my set white and perhaps have someone paint some flowers on the door fronts. Has anyone painted their furniture with any success. What is the process, do I need to sand the pieces, prime them and what is the best type of paint (roller or paint brush). I think I would also like the distressed look where paint is removed from the edges. Your suggestions and photos would be most welcomed.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Help painting bedroom furniture

I've only done it the lazy way...some rough sanding followed by primer and paint. I think the correct way is to really meticulously clean and strip and sand, but that was too many steps for me. ;)

I was happy with the results, but I wasn't looking for a professional finish, just a cheery facelift.


I usually use a brush unless there is a really large and flat surface area to cover, in which case a roller would work better.

Good luck! Hopefully some of the more talented folks on this boar4d will have some good tips for you.


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RE: Help painting bedroom furniture

I had the wonderful idea of doing a white wash on the table so the grain would show through. I thought it would be easy peasy to achieve that look because I could picture it in my mind. Paint it and it will happen.

Well, it was pretty much a FAIL and looked awful. I had to wipe off as much paint as I could and Ill have to try it again after I read some instructions first on how to properly prepare the surface.

Then there was this piece. It took some fancy paint in order to transform it, but I am too impatient to order that paint every time I want to paint something. And I dont want ALL of my pieces to look the same. I dont want a matchy matchy look.

Here is a link that might be useful: blcrushers


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RE: Help painting bedroom furniture

If you want a beautiful professional painted finish, you will need some time and patience.

I would use Benjamin Moore Waterborne Satin Impervo, Regal (pearl finish), or Aura (satin finish). Aura has the premium coloring system, but that wouldn't matter if you are using white. You may prefer a higher gloss than the finishes I listed above. I've used the Satin Impervo a lot; it's a standard pro pick for a beautiful finish, but after 6-9 months or so, it's less glossy than "satin" IMO. High-gloss finishes are very unforgiving of flaws; they show every surface flaw under the paint film and every speck of dust on top of it. So I prefer satin or so in most cases.

For prep, the goal is to achieve clean, dull, and smooth finish. First step is to clean. For bedroom furniture, this shouldn't be too hard. Wipe down the surfaces with a microfiber cloth dipped in HOT water/Dawn solution, then mostly wrung out. Then rinse by wiping down with HOT water/vinegar solution in a wrung-out microfiber. Pay special attention to greasy surfaces like the headboard.

Next, sand for adhesion. The Norton 3X sanding sponges in 120 grit or so are awesome for this. This is not hard. Just quickly go over the surfaces with the sanding sponge. Then vacuum or wipe off the dust with microfiber cloth.

Next, brush/roll on the primer. I like shellac (Zinsser's pigmented) because it has awesome adhesion. But the water-based is fine too. You could also get BM's recommended primer. Primers have more resins for adhesion, while paints have resins for beauty, durability, and washability. Use a foam roller for flat areas, and a brush, like a Purdy angled trim brush, for detail areas. Or even a stencil brush if there are carvings and such. Always do deeper, carved, recessed, detail areas first. Be careful on verticals; apply thinly or you'll get sags and runs. After you paint verticals, go back and check for any runs and sags and carefully brush them out before they set that way.

If your paint sets up too quickly due to warm weather, you can add a retarder like Floetrol. I always try to apply finishes early in the morning when it's as cool as possible.

Apply a coat of your finish paint in the same way. You may want to apply 2 coats, but one coat of good primer and one coat of a good paint like Impervo or Aura may do it.

I like to sand out any brush or roller texture with very fine sanding sponges. But it's easy to sand through to the wood finish, so if you don't like that "distressed" look, be super careful on the edges or else stick with the texture. I think a bit of wood finish peeking through, in a lightly aged and distressed finish, is beautiful. Sanding will also leave a more matte finish.

For flowers, check out stencils from Royal Design Studio, Jan Dressler, Victoria Larsen. Many people think of crude and ugly stenciling, but there are beautiful multi-overlay stencils now, and techniques that leave a hand-painted result. Check out Melanie Royals for inspiration. If you decide to stencil, get one of her books and/or videos to learn the techniques. You would use acrylic colors and glaze medium to produce beautiful effects. And you'd probably want to protect the decorative painting with a coat of clear waterbased finish.


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