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Restoration Ideas You're Sure to Love

After owning the same house for more than 20 years, it came time to decide whether to sell the home or fix it up. And after weeks of contemplation, I realized that I just was not ready to close the door on all the memories held in the home. But I also didn't want to live in a shabby old house anymore. So, I decided to do get involved with some restoration projects – the kitchen, bathrooms, and living room were all updated, as well as the roof. I also redesigned the entire property's landscape to give it a brand new look. Now that everything is complete, I miss the process! So, I thought I would relive some of my favorite projects by sharing ideas, tips, and tricks for renovation that might interest you. Hopefully you'll find the things I have to share inspiring and encouraging.

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Restoration Ideas You're Sure to Love

How To Strip Paint From Furniture

by Jonathan Lucas

Painting furniture is very trendy right now, especially with so many different paints available specifically for painting furniture, such as chalk or milk paint. But what about when you're over that trend and want a stained piece of furniture, rather than a painted piece? You can strip down the piece using a paint stripping process that will help get the wooden surface back and allow you to stain it as you please, without marring the piece. See below for instructions on how to strip down a piece of painted furniture.

Here's What Your Need:

  • Paint stripper (such as Citristrip)
  • Metal scraper
  • Paintbrush
  • Bucket or can (to put the stripped paint into)
  • Wire brush
  • Rubber gloves
  • Respirator
  • Protective eye-wear
  • Sandpaper (fine grit)

Instructions:

  1. Pour some of the paint stripper out into a bucket, and then, using your paintbrush, apply it to the painted surface of your furniture. Paint it on in a thick coating (so it doesn't dry), and allow it to sit for 3-24 hours (be sure to read the manufacturer's directions on your paint stripper).
  2. Using a metal scraper, scrape the paint off carefully, working along the grain. Place the paint you have stripped off into a bucket to dispose of later. 
  3. When you have scraped off as much paint as you can with the scraper, use the wire brush to get off the rest, especially in harder to reach areas such as cracks and around textured areas. 
  4. Next, use the fine grit sandpaper to sand down the piece. You can do so by hand, or using a palm or orbital sander. If using an electric sander, be sure to use an even amount of pressure so you don't damage the piece. 
  5. Once you have the piece down to bare wood, look it over. If you notice any deep dents or scratches, you can repair this using wood filler. Allow the wood filler to dry, then sand it evenly with the rest of your furniture.
  6. Next, use a damp microfiber cloth to remove any sanding dust and other debris. Allow it to dry.
  7. Take a clean paintbrush or sponge brush and dip it into your stain. Paint on the stain, then wipe it into the grain using a clean rag. Repeat the process, working in small sections until you have stained the entire piece. Allow the first coat to dry and look at the color. If you want it darker, apply more stain in the same manner you used on the first coating.
  8. When finished with the stain, you can apply a clear coating of polyurethane to help protect your piece. Follow the manufacturer's directions on the polyurethane container.

Painted furniture is very trendy right now, but if you aren't trilled with the look, you can always strip down the piece back to bare wood to give it a new look.

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