Friday, March 29, 2013

Painting Furniture: Take Two

My laptop is back! Hooray for the return of the blog!

Well part of DIY-ing and becoming a homeowner is learning. I'm sorry...did I say part? I meant all. That means a lot of trial and error.

I posted for you about my first real furniture painting project here. Well, the first one where I actually sort of prepared and did some research before I started. I say that because there may or may not have been a very large project that I painted without having a flippin clue or reading any tutorials before hand. And it may be permanently attached to our living room wall. More on that later. Like I said, everything's a learning process and I am definitely learning a lot.

So after I did the nightstands, my next mission was the matching dresser. We got the set free from of a friend of my dad's and they were in amazing condition. The only cost to us was some paint/primer/poly and the new hardware. Gotta love hand-me-downs.

Here is what David's side of the room looked like before and after. I repainted the dresser that matched the nightstand set, so don't be deceived...this is not the same dresser. I'm not a miracle worker.
Evidently I forgot to take a before picture of the dresser, but it was just a larger version of these nightstands, ugly hardware and all. You can picture it.
This time around I changed it up a bit to improve the process, because that's what it's all about right? First, I changed my primer. This type I used Zinsser's Cover Stain instead of the Kilz Odorless I used on the nightstands. Kilz is odorless, Zinsser smells like pumpkins when you sand it. Just saying.
This stuff is awesome and worked much better...I'll probably be permanently switching to it.

Because I used more diesel primer, I didn't even bother using the electric sander before priming...I just did a few thorough sands with my sanding blocks. I started with a coarse block, then a medium one, then a fine one, until the surface of the dresser was completely smooth.

After sanding, I wiped the surface with a wet cloth and then a dry cloth and painted on two coats of my primer. I did two coats because my between-coat sanding skills aren't perfect and I may or may not have sanded a little too much between coats. Oh well....the more complete primer coverage the better.
And as opposed to my slow process last time, I sped up a little this time. I did my two coats of primer in one day because you only need about an hour in between. Then I sanded the dresser again, with just the fine sanding block until smooth, then wiped down.

Then I painted. I only did two coats of paint this time (I did three on the nightstands). Since I used two coats of primer, two coats of paint was plenty. I also changed my main instrument and added the new love of my painting life....the mini roller. I bought the "best" version of the rollers (see photo below) because I didn't want any fuzzies in my paint. For under $6 I drastically changed the way this painting job turned out. The finish was smooth with very few noticeable streaks and looks awesome. I used the mini roller for the coat of poly as well (Minwax Polycrylic).
I did the drawers first and then the dresser frame because naturally it's winter and I'm painting in the basement. With all the projects/storage/laundry going on down there there was only room for one part of this project at a time. (Don't mind my grocery bag that I hadn't put away yet. Oh and the rest of the mess.)
So with splitting it in two parts I think it took 2 weeks or so to paint it. Then came the hardware issue. I wanted to use the same cup pulls on the bottom four drawers as we used on the nightstands, but I didn't want those on every single drawer...that would have been too much cuppage for one room. So my month long quest began for different hardware for the top dresser drawers since they're smaller. We finally found them at Connecticut Lighting Center's Hardware Showroom in Hartford, but they took two weeks to come in. And they were the wrong size (I knew that when I bought them and I bought them anyway). Naturally. And I didn't wood-fill any holes. Naturally. Sooooo we improvised. David bought a few ten cent washers at the hardware store and drilled the holes a little larger...
...and then we just put the screws in with the washers...
...and you can't even tell. The drawer pulls are tight as a whistle and you can't see the holes....ta da!
and now David has a new dresser. It's bigger than his last one, which I appreciate because he was piling all his clothes on top of the old dresser, and now they (pretty much) all fit.
Pretty much. Evidently he still has trouble putting away his clothes. Men.


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