How to prepare and paint pine furniture professionally
This is the system I use for preparing unpainted pine furniture, regardless of which paint choice you go for. I prefer traditional oil-based paint finishes, but you can have all water-based primers / finishes, or a mix of water-based primer, oil-based finish…
First step -
Remove the knobs; wipe the surface thoroughly with a rag soaked in
white spirit, or meths if it is quite dirty; Krudkutter Original.
(Very waxy surfaces use heavy duty cleaners / wood revivers – see extra tips on how much cleaning to do)
When surface is dry, sand thoroughly with 120 -180 grade abrasive; vacuum off dust; wipe over with a tack rag.
Mask off areas you don’t want to paint. I use 3M 2090 or Trimaco Kleenedge 14 day low tack masking tape, which don’t leave the gum behind. This is an example of how I use masking tape on a hand-painted kitchen cabinet.
Prime with Blackfriars Problem Solving Primer, or 2 coats of Mythic Universal Primer. (Insight into many other products on market that don’t quite match these 2 for usability and / or performance for painting bare pine in the home.)
Fill obvious dings or unsightly gouges. (This is a very subjective part of the process, as you have to balance old furniture v aesthetics. It is possible to create a perfect surface but is it appropriate to skim and sand old timber to a porcelain finish?)
Undercoat with oil undercoat tinted to colour of top coats. Sand and remove dust with vacuum / tack rag.
Oil based eggshell – 2 coats sanding between coats.
(You can substitute the undercoat for an extra coat of eggshell. Eggshell is self undercoating, but it has a little less body and filling properties than full blown undercoat. So there is the option for one off projects, of swapping oil undercoat for eggshell, and save on an extra tin of paint.)
Remove the masking tape carefully. Have a sharp blade handy to cut the tape if you fear the paint will lift as you pull it off. You just want to use the blade to break the bond between paint and tape.
Replace knobs and put the drawers back in, but don’t slam them shut tight! I would leave the paint to harden for as long as possible before you put the furniture into operation. Oil paint is touch dry within a day, but takes about 1 month to harden off completely and stand up to wear. Keeping the furniture out of the firing line for somewhere between a day and a month is good.
If you would rather I painted a piece of furniture for you, just ask. Or contact one of these specialist furniture painters in your area.
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