How to Design Children's Rooms

Refinishing Wood Surfaces

What You'll Need
  • Mineral spirits, wax remover, or commercial wood cleaner
  • Gel or liquid paint stripper
  • Paintbrushes
  • Flat scraper
  • Steel wool
  • Wood filler
  • Sandpaper
  • Clean, damp cloth
  • Stain-blocking primer
  • Waterbase paint or spray paint

  1. For painted wood, use mineral spirits, wax remover, or
    commercial wood cleaner to thoroughly clean surface. Let dry.

  2. Apply liquid or gel stripper according to manufacturer's instructions. When old finish
    begins to bubble, scrape off old paint, following wood grain and taking care not to gouge or scratch surface. Repeat until all paint has been removed. Use steel wool on any stubborn areas.

  3. Fill any holes or blemishes with wood filler, let dry, then lightly
    sand following wood grain. Wipe away dust with a clean, slightly damp cloth.

  4. If you plan to paint the piece, prime it according to manufacturer's instructions. Use wide paintbrush, and make long, even strokes. Let dry completely.

  5. Apply 2 coats of paint to furniture, letting it dry between coats. If knots or blemishes still show through, apply a third coat.