For those of you who are missing furniture makeovers, a few are coming your way! As I was working on these pieces today, I realized my back does not miss working on furniture, but I do. There is something therapeutic about working on a piece of furniture to me.
Prepping these pieces to paint was not on my “big three” list today, but I got two out of three of my biggies done and I decided to shift gears. We have had winter weather through most of March and all of April. It’s just been too cold to work outside or in the garage. I tried it a couple of times and it was just stupid. Anyway, we’re expecting some snow and a wintry mix this weekend, so I figured I needed to take advantage of a (warm) 40 degree day and do some furniture prepping, which really needs to be done outside.
This is the first piece I’m working on…
I bought it back in December to use in my studio. I needed a small table to use as a flat work surface and as a flat-lay photo backdrop. This one has a great old top and pretty legs, but it needs a little freshening up! Sanding the top was number one on the list, because the top was very rough.
I gave it a good sanding with my orbital palm sander equipped with 120 and then 180 grit sand paper. I didn’t want to sand it too much, so the patina would wear away, but I didn’t want to get splinters from it, either.
After sanding, I brought it back inside and vacuumed off all the dust.
And, speaking of Aviary, our official launch of the color is next week, so I needed a dresser to paint to introduce it! I have been looking for one on craigslist for a while, but haven’t found any I really love at a price I’m willing to pay. I mentioned that on my Instagram stories and one of my friends from church offered up one of her dressers…
I do feel like I need to apologize to someone for painting this! I know the grain is beautiful. Since the owner gave it to me to paint, I don’t owe her an apology. I’ll apologize to my natural wood-loving father-in-law. Sorry, Mike.
If it makes anyone feel any better, the wood will still be under the paint. Despite what some people think, painting a wood piece does not turn the wood into a sub-par material. Also, this piece looks like it has been refinished, so it’s not sporting the original patina. Lastly, it has a few water rings on top.
Feel better? Maybe? Maybe not? Moving on…
This piece currently has a shiny polyurethane finish, which milk paint doesn’t stick to very well in some cases. I don’t mind this piece looking chippy, but I don’t want shiny wood peeking through the chipped and distressed areas. For me, that detracts from the look quite a bit.
So, I wanted to give this piece a thorough sanding with a heavy grit paper to completely take away any shine. I used 60 grit paper for that and changed out the sanding disk when the first one was wearing down.
And, just a tip, you shouldn’t feel like you’re fighting your orbital sander, shoving it’s face into the surface you’re sanding. If you find you’re doing that and using a lot of pressure, change to a lower grit paper or change out the sanding disc. Your arm and your sander will thank you for that!
Here it is with all of the gloss knocked off…
The finish was pretty thin, so a lot of it was completely removed.
I know sanding has gotten a bad reputation over the past few years and I get that. I get that we want to just paint! That’s the fun part. But, even with paints that have great adhesive properties, your piece is only going to benefit from a light sanding. It took me about 10 minutes to sand this whole piece, so it’s worth it in the end.
The other advantage to sanding is you get to know your piece. I rub my hands all over it, checking for places that might need to be repaired, loose veneer, scratches or gouges that should be sanded out, etc. I don’t always sand, but I do it more often than not and it’s generally a good practice.
Now it’s time to break out the paint…