I shared here how I scored a new bed frame for my master bedroom!
I bought the entire set which included a chest of drawers and two nightstands. Since I am not into "matchy-matchy" and didn't need the chest and nightstands, I decided to do something to mask the "timeless" honey oak of the remaining pieces....
Notice the use of "quotes" on "timeless." I have lived long enough to know that NOTHING is timeless. Nothing. Not subway tile, trestle tables or hardwood floors.
Why? Because while they date back decades, there was a time when those now-popular must haves in the decor world were seriously out of favor. Had you bought a house with subway tile and hardwood floors in the 70s, you would have immediately replaced them with wall-to-wall carpet and olive green 4x4 tile.
Not saying you shouldn't decorate with the times, just don't expect it to be the "in thing" 15 years from now!
Anywho, back to the chest and side table make overs!
As always I have to have my "stain" fix. Occasionally I will paint an entire piece, but if there is some redeeming wood on a dresser or table, I want that mix of stain and paint. These piece are oak, but the color of the oak was the dated "honey oak." So I used gel stain on the tops and drawer fronts and painted the "cabinet."
Gel stain is super easy to use and allows you to change the color without having to strip the old finish.
I always stain before I paint. Primarily because after the stain and finish cures, you can tape it off to paint!
Again, no stripping or sanding. I have tried every gel stain on the market....General Finishes brand is the ONLY gel stain and finish I would recommend for this process. It comes in a variety of colors and sheens.
First, knock the sheen of the old finish off by lightly sanding with 220 grit paper...you don't need to get it ALL off...just a light sanding (WITH THE GRAIN!), then wipe it all down with a tack cloth. Wipe on the first coat of stain with an old athletic sock (I put on a disposable glove first)...let it dry for 24 hours, then wipe on the second coat with a fresh old sock...dry 24 hours...then wipe on the 3rd coat (again, fresh sock).
The first two coats will leave you in a panic...don't. I promise you will have the look you want after three coats.
Keep in mind, it is stain...NOT paint. So don't be heavy handed with it or try to get perfect coverage with the 1st and 2nd coats. Keep it thin and translucent. And ALWAYS wipe with the grain of the wood! After 3 coats of stain, I seal it with the General Finishes wipe-on poly!
If you goof, the stain will easily wipe off with mineral spirits BEFORE you seal it with the poly.
Let the poly cure well, at least 4-5 days before taping it off for paint.
This is what my "assembly line" process looks like when I prime several pieces....
I had four dressers that needed priming. This is also what I call taking a piece to "base neutral." Sometimes I have no idea what color I want to paint a piece until I can get the old crudy finish covered. I prime and sand and then wait for inspiration.
When it was all said and done, the oak dresser and side tables got plain ole' "off white." Classic.
And of course, new hardware.
Obviously I did something right...the chest of drawers sold immediately.
If you have a piece that has a "dated" finish, try using gel stain to update the stain color. Every decor needs the warmth of a wood finish...so don't be so quick to slather paint on every piece!
Until next week....