Are you ready to give your old and tired armoire a brand new look? Painting furniture is an easy way to transform a piece of furniture that may have seen better days. In this blog post, we will guide you through an easy painted armoire makeover that will leave your furniture looking polished and updated.
Whether you are a seasoned DIYer or a beginner, this project is simple enough for anyone to tackle with confidence. Get ready to breathe new life into your drab armoire and create a stunning piece that will elevate the look of any room.
My sister bought this armoire for her bedroom and asked if I could help her paint it. It was in excellent shape, unlike most of my makeovers, but this tone of wood just isn’t her style.
So, she brought it over and helped me, help her paint it.
Which I was happy to do because I’ve been really burnt out in the painting department lately. It was so nice to have some help and some company while we painted.
Supplies Used for This Painted Armoire Makeover
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- Krud Kutter
- SurfPrep Sander
- Foam sanding pads
- 220 grit sandpaper
- Carbide Scraper
- Stripwell QCS (Use code SUNLIGHT10 to get 10% off your order of Stripwell QCS!)
- BIN shellac based primer
- Shop Vacuum
- Tack cloth
- Sherwin Williams Emerald Urethane Trim Enamel
- Zibra Chiseled Wedge paint brush
- Mohair mini roller
- Zibra topcoat brush
- Waterbased Polyurethane
- Hexagon knobs
Get our list of the best painting furniture supplies here!
Preparing Furniture for Paint
Before we start slapping on the paint, we have to Prepare Furniture For Painting, to make sure it sticks well, and to make sure it looks really good when all is said and done.
Just like with every makeover, we removed the hardware first. We even unscrewed the hinges from the door… which if you’ve refinished furniture… you know can come back to bite ya.
But this piece is new enough that I didn’t think it would be a big deal to put it back together.
Then my sister cleaned the whole piece with Krud Kutter and a damp rag to make sure the surface was clean and to help the paint stick.
Here’s exactly How to Clean Furniture Before Painting.
And then she breezed through scuff sanding the armoire with my Surfprep Sander.
Sanding before painting helps the paint stick to the furniture. Learn how to scuff sand your furniture, and see why it’s so important in our Sanding Before Painting Furniture post.
If you don’t have an electric sander, here’s my guide on how to sand wood by hand.
Here are more Sandpaper for Furniture Painting options.
Removing Wood Stain from Wood
My sister wanted the top to be a warm grey wood color, so while she scuff sanded I thought I could quickly scrape off the old finish with the carbide scraper… nope!! I tried and tried but it barely removed the topcoat!
I was worried about sanding it all down, fearing that I would sand through a thin layer of veneer and into a layer of MDF or particle board since this armoire is fairly new.
So, to play it safe, we decided to use a chemical stripper to remove the old finish.
We used Stripwell QCS to remove the finish. I’ve gotta say, this stuff is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. Stripwell QCS is a simple and safe chemical stripper that has virtually no VOCs, which is rare with chemical strippers!
(Use code SUNLIGHT10 to get 10% off your order of Stripwell QCS!)
Check out my Stripwell QCS review here.
Learn how to use Stripwell QCS chemical stripper in this How to Refinish a Dresser post.
This finish was THICK! We ended up doing 2 rounds of stripping to get it off. Not surprising though since the carbide scraper barely did anything on this one!
Here’s our list of the Best Wood Stain Removers to help you make an informed decision on which remover is best for your project.
Prime Before Painting
My sister wanted to paint this piece white, and if we didn’t prime it, I was sure we would have stains ruining our white paint job.
Check out the Best Primers to Stop Tannin Bleed here!
We brushed and rolled 2 coats of primer on to make sure we had full coverage everywhere.
When the primer was all dry, we sanded it smooth with fine grit foam pads, just to remove the texture that was left behind and make it feel smooth. We used the vacuum to suck up most of the dust and then wiped everything down with a tack cloth again.
Restaining Wood with Paint
The next day the top (where we stripped off the old finish) was dry, so we were able to sand the raw wood with 220 grit sandpaper to smooth out the wood and remove a little bit of finish that was leftover.
I also used some medium grit foam sanding pads to sand the curves on the side of the dresser by hand. Then I cleaned off the dust.
My sister loves her wood to have some grey in it, so I mixed up some grey and cream paint to make a light gray color, and then I added some water to the paint to create a wash.
This process is very similar to whitewashing wood.
And then I brushed the wash onto the wood quickly, with a Zibra paint brush and wiped it away quickly to give it a slight grey tone.
Ahhh it looks sooo good!!
Learn all about How to Restain Wood furniture here!
Painting Furniture White
Then we brushed and rolled some Sherwin Williams Emerald Urethane Trim Enamel in pure white onto the rest of the armoire.
Check out my list of the best white paint for furniture here.
This paint is high quality, self leveling trim paint that dries to a very durable finish.
Check out my honest Sherwin Williams Emerald Urethane Trim Enamel Review here.
We painted 2 coats on everything, letting it dry completely between coats (recoat time is 4 hours). This paint doesn’t need a topcoat. Actually, you shouldn’t topcoat it.
Here’s everything you need to know about Painting Furniture with Enamel Paint.
Topcoating Stained Wood
But, the freshly stained wood on top did need a topcoat for protection.
Learn more about Topcoats for Painting Furniture and how to apply topcoat to painted furniture in this post.
White Painted Armoire
Then we put everything back together and we put on some new cute hexagon knobs on the drawers and door.
Check out our How to Change Hardware on a Dresser guide.
And here’s what it looks like now!
More Before And After Makeovers
Click any of these “before” photos below to view the “after” of that makeover.
How stinking cute!
I think I need to paint more furniture white, because I LOVE this crisp white look!
If you feel the same way, here are more White Painted Furniture ideas!
What do you think of the new look? Would you have painted it all one color? Or do you like the wood top?
Let me know in the comments!!
- Remove the hardware and clean the furniture with Krud Kutter. Scuff sand everything to get it ready for paint.
- Remove the stained finish on top with Stripwell QCS.
- Apply 2 coats of BIN shellac based primer with a paint brush and roller.
- When the primer is dry, sand smooth with fine grit foam pads. Use the vacuum to suck up any dust then wipe everything down with a tack cloth.
- Brush and roll 2 coats of Sherwin Williams Emerald Urethane Trim Enamel in pure white with the Zibra Chiseled Wedge paint brush and mohair mini roller.
- Thin out some grey paint and apply it to the raw wood top.
- Once the wood is dry, apply 3 coats of topcoat using the Zibra topcoat brush.
- Put on new hardware.
More White Painted Furniture Makeovers
- White Painted Dressers
- Painting a Dresser White
- DIY Whitewash Dresser
- White Painted Coffee Table
- Gel Stain Over White Paint
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