Bliss Refurbished

Blog

How to avoid spending days removing paint from furniture!

I WOULD LOVE TO SAY THAT THIS APPROACH IS EFFORTLESS BUT FROM MY EXPERIENCE WITH REMOVING PAINT FROM FURNITURE, THERE IS NO EFFORTLESS APPROACH.

THOUGH I HAVE NOT USED A GOOD PAINT STRIPPER BEFORE. I HAVE USED MANY BRANDS BUT THEY HAVE NOT BEEN STRONG ENOUGH.

I LIVE IN NORWAY AND THERE IS NOT AS MANY PRODUCTS HERE. SO YOU HAVE TO WORK WITH WHAT YOU HAVE.

I GOT GIVEN THIS LITTLE CONTRAPTION FROM MY PARTNERS GRANDMOTHER.

SHE IS AN AMAZING LADY WHO HAS ALWAYS DONE THINGS HERSELF AND IS VERY LOVELY AND FOUND OUT WHAT I WAS UP TO AND GAVE ME THIS MAGICAL TOOL.

WELL….. IT IS A HEAT GUN.

I HAVE FOUND THIS SUPER FUN TO USE.

CAN NOT BELIEVE I HAVE LIVED WITH OUT IT FOR SO LONG! IT IS AMAZING!

So the concept is the air that comes out of the gun is incredible hot so it melts the paint.

This in turn makes the paint bubble and peel off. I have to say it takes a little practice and elbow grease.

That is the problem with old paint it is a pain to get off.

I seem to always end up refinishing pieces with layers of paint on them.

I can not say no to myself or others when it comes to this, i see these lovely pieces that will just be left to go to the dump if i do not save them!

So i spend hours/days stripping the paint off, which is very time consuming.

The tool i now use makes the process easier, if you do not have the option of a good paint stripper or dislike using stripper.

Another positive aspect of using a heat gun is it is cost effective in comparison to using lots of products.

Paint guns are fantastic at removing many layers of paint all at once.

They are also great at removing different types of finishes from varnish to old paints. Apart from lead paint which should not be removed with a heat gun. There are lots of great articles about the dangers of removing lead paint and how to do it safely. It is very important to read them before attempting to do this.

List of tools used for this project –

  • Heat gun
  • Tool for scraping (Strong flat scraper)
  • Sander and sand paper
  • Chalk paint in the color Graphite
  • Chalk paint wax (Dark)
  • Steel wool (0000)
  • Paint brush
  • Lint free cloth
  • Misting bottle

If you have any questions- leave a comment in the comments section down below.

This is the end result of a console table i stripped. It was covered with a few layers of paint. This is a very satisfying stage.

Here are some of my other stripped projects.
White painted cuboardChest of drawers

1. I started with a white console table.

So this is the table after i had started with the Heat Gun. I believe this had been done in one sitting and had taken 1 hour roughly.

I did not wash the piece before i started doing this process. As everything is melted off.

The heat gun has two settings and i used the higher one for this project.

I also use a tool that helped me scrape off the heated up paint. It takes a little practice to hold the heat gun close enough and at the same time not too close.

If the heat gun is not close enough you can see it does not heat the paint (make it bubble) and when it is too close it can burn the surface under the paint.

This did not take me long to get the hang of though.

This is an extremely addictive process. It is super fun removing the paint and revealing the surface. Obviously that fun does not last for long….

But i always stop and start with this kind of project.

This makes the whole process easier to deal with.

With any of the static (staying still) parts of fixing up furniture it is a good idea to move around once in a while. Get up stretch, go do something else for a little while. It is very easy to get into something and get carried away. And after a while you might get a little stiff.

After i removed the paint as much as i felt was necessary i started the sanding process.

2. The process of sanding

I am not quite sure what this table was made from, it is not wood. And it is unlike anything i have seen before.

But i got to sanding which was very easy and quick as the left over paint was almost crispy so sanded straight off.

I used a 150 grit sand paper and sanded with my orbital sander all over the whole table. I also ended up having to do some hand sanding in a few areas.

This process was relatively quick compared to usual.

After i had sanded i wiped over the piece and made sure it was dust free. I also wiped over with a damp cloth to make sure there was a clean surface for the paint to adhere to.

This is what i was left with.

Then came the process of painting.

3. I Painted the console table with Chalk Paint – In the color GRAPHITE by Annie Sloan.

This is such a wonderful rich color that has such depth to it. It is my favourite color at the moment and my customers favourite too.

I painted the first coat and then waited for the coat of paint to dry and then added another coat. I did not sand inbetween. I wanted to add a little texture.

I always have a misting bottle close by when painting with chalk paint, as it can thicken.

This helps smooth out the paint again.

This gives the impression of an old painted table. I wanted to go for a rustic farmhouse look.

4. Sealing the table with dark wax.

When i seal my pieces with dark wax i use steel wool as the applicator (As long as it is over a dark color). This works extremely well. I love how you can distress at the same time.

I work in small sections at a time and rub the wax into the paint, using a circular motion and then a straight motion, until i feel it has sunk in. I then wipe over the area with a lint free cloth. In sweeping motion from one edge of the table to the other side.

Making sure there is no residual wax left over. You can also go back to the piece after about an hour and buff to a sheen if you want more of a glossy finish, but i do love that gorgeous matt look.

The dark wax also colors the distressed areas a beautiful warm brown.

Wax is a little tricky sometimes and can take a little practice. I have been meaning to write a post about all i have learnt from using wax as i have made pretty much every mistake you can make with it!

But once you get the hang of it, it is a lovely way to finish pieces. I would only say that it is not good for high traffic areas. It does not work well with water being placed on it. It is not great on nightstands, dining tables, coffee tables etc.

I have been experimenting with different finishes recently to achieve a strong topcoat on the tops of cabinets, chests etc and then waxing the bodies of pieces to achieve a matt appearance with a resistant top.

For this project i used polyurethane on the top and shelf and dark wax on the body. I then also went over around the edges with a little dark wax to bring the piece together.

I can not see much of a difference between the finishes.

5. Adding new handles.

I added these old brass handles to the piece. I felt they really suited the style. What do you think?

Leave a comment down below.

I love feedback whether it is good or bad. I feel it helps me see things from all sides.

It is quite amazing how much of a difference handles and knobs can make to a piece of furniture.

6. Adding a transfer to the side of the drawers and sealing with clear wax.

I loved the effect that was created with this transfer. It was super fun to add. I think transfers are amazing and they really add some WOW factor to a piece. I have only used them a few times but love the effect created.

Finished

For the props for staging these photos i have used some Vintage Norwegian decorational items.

I hope you enjoyed this article. Please leave me a comment with your thoughts. I love hearing from you.

Hope you all have a great day.

Love Anna x

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Come join my mailing list and receive great Furniture and Decor Makeover Ideas every week!