3 Must-Haves For Furniture Refinishing


Why toss your old furniture and buy something new when you can refinish it? Refinishing allows you to turn worn, dirty or dull looking furniture into fresh, new-looking home decor. Although you can hire a professional to do it for you, freshening up your table, chest of drawers, chair or any other favorite piece of furniture is something that most DIYers can do for themselves.

Before you begin, you'll need to know what must-have materials are necessary for this type of project:

A Quality Stripper

Slapping a coat of stain or varnish on top of your old table won't exactly "refinish" it. It's unlikely that the coating will adhere to the surface well and you won't get the desired look. Unless you're going for a clumpy, bumpy, uneven appearance, you'll need to strip the old coating off first.

Even though chemicals typically offer a fast, easy way to strip down the surface, you can opt for another method. You can completely sand the old surface off. That said, you need high quality sanding equipment and know how to use it. If you're a novice or have never sanded, you might want to think twice about trying the technique on a treasured piece of furniture.

Protective Gear

Strippers, stains and varnishes aren't exactly chemicals that you want to get on your body or your floor. That said, you don't have to put off your refinishing product just to avoid them. Aside from doing this project either outdoors or in a very well-ventilated space, you'll need:

  • Drop cloths or painter's tarps to put under the furniture.
  • Protective work gloves.
  • Goggles or work glasses.


If you're sure that sawdust is just the mess that falls on the floor as you're in the processes of refinishing, think again. According to Yankee Magazine, you can use sawdust to soak up the chemicals that are leftover from stripping down your furniture.

After you've applied the stripper, scraped off the original finish and rinsed the wood off, you can spread it across the surface. The dust will absorb the chemicals (and any water that you've used during the rinsing process). Don't let the sawdust dry onto the wet surface. Wipe it off after it's soaked up the mess, but before it turns into a sticky paste.

Stains, Oils and Varnish

After you strip, sand and clean the furniture you're ready to cover it up. That's where a stain comes in. You can change the color of the wood or if you like the natural finish, try an oil. Tung oil provides a protective coating without altering the wood's original appearance.

When you've gotten the stain hue that pleases you, complete the refinishing process with a clear varnish. This adds a glossy look and will protect your table, chair or desk top until you're ready to switch up the look again. If you want more help or have other questions, contact a company like Granddad's Refinishing, LLC to learn more.


3 December 2014