Furniture Finishing

Furniture Finishing

Old or new, the appeal of wood is timeless. Old wood can be restored to its original appearance... new wood can be preserved for years of enjoyment. By following the label directions and the finishing steps below, you’ll discover that “doing it yourself” can be fun.


Restoring your treasures...

To restore old wood and furniture to its original newness, the old finish must be removed to the bare wood.

1. Apply Paint & Varnish Remover

Wear rubber gloves, If poor ventilation, wear a respirator and then pour remover onto the surface liberally. Do one small area at a time.

2. Scrape off Loose Film

After the remover has softened the film, scrape off with a putty knife. Ornate areas should be cleaned with a pointed tool. Be careful not to scratch or mar the wood. Repeat steps as necessary.

3. Open Grained Woods

Oak, mahogany, walnut woods have pores that act as reservoirs. Clean these out using extra fine steel wool saturated with solvent. Do Not use steel wool if application requires a waterborne product. Instead, use a ultra fine grained sand paper.

4. The Final Step

Wipe surface thoroughly with denatured alcohol to eliminate any residues.


A beautiful finish begins with sanding...

Sand thoroughly until surface is smooth, without the slightest scratch or mar visible. Any imperfections will magnify after the finish coat has been applied.

1. Sand with the Grain

To avoid scratches, sand with the grain. Begin with a medium grade (120 Grit) and finish with a finer grade (220 Grit).

2. Sanding Blocks Make it Easier

On flat surfaces, a sanding block provides easier, faster sanding.

3. Steel Wool

For intricate areas, steel wool works well, however be certain to remove all traces before finishing. Do not use steel wool if finishing with a waterborne product.

4. Remove All Dust

The best way to remove dust on bare wood is to vacuum the surface, followed by solvent wiping. Use a tack rag between coats after sanding.

5. Open-grained Woods

Open-grained woods are naturally beautiful, but if you prefer a smooth finish with no pores, it will be necessary to use a pastewood filler applied directly to the bare wood.



There are so many beautiful stain colors and any one of them will accentuate and beautify the natural grain of the wood. Apply stain with brush or cloth, wait a few moments and then wipe off the excess with a clean rag. If color is darker than desired, soak a rag in turpentine or mineral spirits and wipe off stain until proper color is achieved. Rags soaked in thinner, turpentine, stain or varnish can spontaneously combust and start a fire. To prevent this, spread rags outside or put them in a fire proof container, If a darker color is desired, apply an additional coat of stain followed by wiping. Let dry thoroughly.





The finish coat...

1. Work in a Dust Free Area

Find a spot where the air currents are at a minimum and where there is no foot traffic.

2. Clean with a Tack Rag

Remove all traces of dust immediately before applying finish coat.

3. Use a Quality Brush

A natural white bristle brush is best.

4. Apply the Finish

First, brush the varnish on the surface with a quality bristle brush according to the label directions. The final coat should be applied at a 30~ angle unthinned.

5. Between Coats

Follow label directions, but most procedures recommend light sanding between coats to assure positive adhesion. Remember to use a tack rag to eliminate dust and residue.