Refinishing Furniture: A Beginner’s Guide

A lot of people are holding on to their older furniture with the current trend of refinishing it themselves. Have you tried to do this but just fail every time? 

Flipping furniture isn’t as easy as it seems, but once you understand the basics it makes the process so much more enjoyable!

Refinishing furniture is a fun way for creatives to not only revive an older piece, but also to save a tonne of money on purchasing new, low quality items from the Big Brands out there. Our artists have even made a career out of this by really diving in and learning these skills professionally, to be able to provide customers with beautifully refinished furniture at a fraction of the cost that Big Box Stores charge. 

If you’ve made it this far in the Blog, then this beginner’s guide to refinishing furniture will be perfect for you. 

Let’s dive in! 

Whether you have an antique piece, a family heirloom passed down or just an old piece of furniture, there are lots of things to consider before starting to refinish your piece of furniture. 

  • Is the paint chipping on your piece?
  • Is there extensive damage? (Scrapes, marks, etc)
  • Is the old topcoat flaking or peeling off?
  • Did the sun change the colour of your piece? 
  • Are there watermarks or stains on the piece? 

If you notice one or more of these signs on your furniture, it’s probably time to refinish them! 

Many beginners who have seen the many viral videos online of artists refinishing furniture might be intimidated at first; but with the right tools, determination & willingness to learn, you will be flipping alongside the professionals in no time! 

Before we get started, you will want to decide which style you are going for with this piece.

If you are painting, you will only need to “scuff up” the surface with a 120 grit sandpaper before adding your primer & paint. 

If you are staining, you will need to sand or strip the surface down to the raw wood by using an 80, 120/150, grit sandpaper (optional: 220 grit), or Stripper + Steel Wool + Putty Knife. Ensure to neutralize/clean off all of the Stripper before moving onto next steps.