Refinishing … diving in

So I follow a lot of DIYers online. There are some seriously talented folks out there. They inspired me to try my hand at refinishing furniture. Let me be honest with you… there are a lot of differing opinions about how to accomplish this and you will need to try them out until you find the one and the products that work best for you. Let me give you an example.

Several of my favourite DIY bloggers seem to be in partnership with and really like using Ryobi tools. I chose to believe this as an endorsement and so when I was looking for a 1/4 sheet palm sander and a detail sander for refinishing, I chose Ryobi. They had the best price point and they came wit the endorsement of those DIYers I just love! Well, I did not like those tools at all! I felt that they had design flaws such as vents when the hand grips the machine and a really terrible self-stick sandpaper design. On top of that, the dust collection did not seem to work at all! I sanded and sanded and the dust collector was almost empty. I took them back! I ended up getting purchasing the DeWalt 1/4 sheet palm sander that I should have in the first place. Seriously… go with what you know and like. I had previously purchased a DeWalt¬†random orbital sander and just LOVE it. It fits my small hands (did I mention that I have small hands), and it was a good weight. I use that tool more than any other tool I own.

Back to refinishing. I went online to my local VarageSale site and found a 35 year old bentwood rocking chair for sale at a very reasonable price. Now I¬†know that rocking chairs are making a comeback in nurseries and the farmhouse vintage style, so I went for it. I disassembled it, put the hardware in a container and started sanding and filling. Well it took me a year of grab a few minutes here and there, but I finally had it ready to paint. I had decided to to a chalk paint with a distressed peek-a-boo finish. I found a recipe for a simple chalk paint, bought my supplies and dove in. First coat was a warm charcoal colour. Second coat was a dove grey. Some sanding to distress and show the charcoal base, 3 coats of wipe-on poly and then try and remember how to reassemble it! Voila! Get a brave adult to test it (make sure it wasn’t going to fall apart), take photos and list it to sell!

I must say that I was quite happy with the outcome. Will I get better with practice? YES, but man this was a pretty successful first go at refinishing.

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