When last we spoke, I shared a little “step by step” tutorial for repairing and prepping this “less-than-desirable” chest….
I can not stress enough the importance of “prep work” on any project. Again, if you don’t take the time to make repairs and properly prep (regardless of whether it is a dresser or a wall or a floor) all the “pretty” is going to be wasted.
(BTW, while cruising Pinterest I found this super awesome tutorial for repairing chipped corners with wood filler! Great suggestions!)
Make proper repairs, sand patches smooth, use the right tools and materials! Do the repairs and prep or you are wasting your time and resources making it pretty.
After all the patching and repairs, the next step is properly priming! (I had already stripped and oiled the drawers and set them aside!)
I primed the cabinet of the chest with Kilz. That is usually my go-to primer since it sands smooth and holds up well. Primer is a SUPER important step on most paint projects…unless you are chalk painting! Since this was a relatively small project I used the spray Kilz…one can.
TIP: I know a lot of paints SAY they are a “paint and primer” in one…I may eventually change my tune but I don’t believe them. I ALWAYS use a primer…always!
After the Kilz had dried well (usually overnight but several days is best), I sanded it smooth with 220 grit paper.
After sanding I checked all the areas I had repaired…there were a few little spots that needed additional putty and one I missed on the first go round…
…no biggy….I just filled them again, let it dry, sanded smooth, spritzed on a little more primer and then sanded it again after that had dried.
Tack cloth…it is an absolute necessity on any paint job. I see tutorials all the time that recommend wiping the piece with a damp cloth or even mineral spirits. Forget about it! USE TACK CLOTH! It will pick up the finest grains of whatever and will make a huge difference in the final look and feel of your paint job!
I’m kind of obsessed with white lacquer these days. i just love the high gloss finish. Spray paint is always a great option for smaller projects and you can find a multitude of colors and sheens! Just make sure you use a quality brand! You can also brush and/or roll alkyd (oil based) or latex (water based) paint. ALWAYS use an additive and use a high quality brush and 4” foam roller to apply the paint. Pay attention to the manufactures recommendation for temperature and application…it matters!
Regardless of whether you use a spray paint or lacquer, latex or oil, always apply 2-3 THIN coats, allowing dry time as recommended. Thinner is better. If you try to get a one coat finish, you will likely be disappointed and make a HUGE mess!
Spray, roll, and/or brush on the paint…a thin coat…let it properly dry, lightly sand the boogers AFTER it has properly dried with a fine grit paper (IF needed), tack and recoat. Regardless of whether you need to sand between coats, always use tack cloth before applying additional coats. I usually apply at least two coats and sometimes three.
Most paints do not need a top coat but if your piece will be getting a lot of use, I recommend a light coat of polycrylic. Polyurethane is some good stuff but it tends to “yellow” so polycrylic works great.
…and the oh-so-better after….
You may have noticed one little missing element. The hardware! Why? Well because I didn’t pay attention when I ordered new brass cone knobs and they are coming from CHINA!!! So I should have them someday…maybe…who knows! The hard work is done…knobs are no biggy!
One of the patched areas after paint…
Dry time…IT MATTERS. I cringe when I watch DIY shows and they immediately stage all the pretty pieces they just painted. There is a huge difference between “dry to touch” and “dry to USE.” Truth is, paint and finishes need time to cure before you put all your pretties on it. You can move it in place, but give latex paint AT LEAST a week or two to cure and oil based paints a good 3-4 weeks. Otherwise you may find that your heavy lamp or knick-knacks will stick to the finish or leave a mark!
This is another dresser I finished up a few weeks ago. It didn’t have near the issues the first had, but the refinish process was the same…KSTP the cabinet and refinish the drawer fronts…presto-bingo…
Again, I know this sounds like a daunting and time consuming task…but if you take the time to do it right, you will have a piece that will last another lifetime and one you will be proud to use in your home!