8 Furniture Painting Mistakes

Chinoiserie Nesting Tables, One Kings Lane

If you have a room full of old furniture, and you’re thinking about changing things up, there’s no need to rush out and buy a bunch of new stuff. All you need to do is paint what you have. Once you do that, you have a brand-new-looking room without a lot of expense. However, you need to make sure you don’t mess up the furniture in the process. It will not only take longer to complete the project, but you could end up spending a lot of money to fix your blunders. Following are a few furniture painting mistakes you need to avoid.

Sand Smoothly

Before you begin painting a piece of furniture, you need to prepare the surface. It won’t do much good to paint the furniture if the paint that’s on it is chipped or peeling. Painting an uneven surface will be a waste of paint, because the furniture will end up looking worse than it already does. Instead, you should sand the entire surface that is going to be painted. Make sure you sand it smoothly, without leaving gouges or flat spots.

Wipe the Dust Off Before Painting

After sanding, you’re ready to begin painting, but not before you make sure the sanded area is entirely smooth. You should do that by wiping the dust off the sanded area. If you paint over the specks of dust, you’ll end up with little bumps all over the furniture. The dust that resulted from sanding the furniture will not only make the surface uneven, but the specks of dust will end up on your paintbrush and in the paint can, as well.

Clean the Furniture First

After sanding the furniture, and wiping the dust off, there is one more thing you should do before painting; make sure it is clean. Use a cleaning solution of soap and water to wash off each piece of furniture before applying any paint--make sure you allow time for the surface to dry before starting to paint. This will ensure the painted surface will be smooth once you’ve completed the project.

Louis XV-Style End Tables, One Kings Lane

Priming Is Important

Some paints advertise that you needn’t apply a primer before painting. Some salespeople agree, while others insist that priming the surface will ensure a smooth paintjob. Applying a primer will prepare the furniture for the coats of paint that will follow. The primer will allow the paint to go on smoothly, and adhere to the surface of the furniture.

Allow Enough Time for the Project

Before beginning the painting project, make sure you allow enough time to complete it. Instead of starting a project and then not being able to get it done, you should set aside enough time to ensure you’ll be able to complete all facets, one after the other. Otherwise the furniture could end up looking like one side is darker than the other, because you only painted half of it before stopping for the day--unevenly applied paint will also dry erratically. It takes a certain amount of time for primer to dry, and each coat of paint requires enough time to dry before moving on to the next coat.

Watch the Weather

Different weather conditions cause paint to dry at varying speeds. Before beginning your painting project, you should watch the weather forecast to be sure you’ll be able to finish in the time you have set aside--this is true especially if you intend to do the work outside. You also want to make sure it’s not too windy--because blustery conditions will most likely cause dust and dirt to fly through the air, and some of it will undoubtedly land on the wet paint.

Gather Material Before You Start

In order to make the project go smoothly, you should gather all the material you’ll need to complete your furniture painting job before you actually begin. It will slow the process considerably if you have to quit what you’re doing in order to run to the store for another can of paint. It could also cause the furniture to dry unevenly if you stop while only part of it is painted. Having everything on hand will help make the project go as smoothly as possible.

Clean Up Immediately

Another important aspect of completing your project in a timely manner is to clean up as soon as you finish. If you don’t, the paint could dry on your brushes, and they would be useless for any future projects. You should make sure the paint cans are closed tightly, and stored correctly, as well. If you don’t, the paint will dry out, or the cans could inadvertently be kicked over and the paint will be spilled.

Guest post from Nicky Shaw. Nicky writes for HomeSecurity.org.

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