Painting a Dining Table Black

Welcome to today’s blog post on painting a dining table black! If you’ve got an old dining set just begging for an update, or you’ve found a great secondhand bargain which is in need of a little love, then this detailed guide is for you. Creating your own black painted furniture is a great way to save money while updating your home!

We’ll take you through each step, from preparation to the final result, and show you how you can transform your dining table and chairs with a sleek, modern, and durable black finish. Whether you’re a seasoned DIYer or a first-time upcycler, by the end of this post, you’ll be ready to tackle your own dining table makeover with confidence.

photo of dining table and chairs before the makeover

Our dining tables are the heart of our homes, a place where we gather to share meals, laughter, and stories. But what happens when that beloved table starts to show a little too much wear and tear or simply doesn’t match your evolving taste?

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You paint it, of course! And not just any color, but a chic, sophisticated black. This guide will take you through a step-by-step journey of how to breathe new life into your old dining set, transforming it into a beautiful black masterpiece.

So, roll up your sleeves, get your painting supplies ready, and let’s dive into the world of DIY furniture upcycling!

Supplies for Painting a Dining Table Black

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Black Painted Dining Table Makeover

Alright, let’s talk about painting a dining table black. You gotta pick the best paint for this job, right? Something that can stand up to all the spills, scratches, and daily use, especially if it’s your go-to spot for meals.

So here’s the story; we found this dining table and four chairs at a thrift store. Not a matching set, but we made it work. I initially wanted to keep the top of the table wood, ’cause let’s be real, a wood stain finish can take a beating better than paint.

But this table was pretty beat up, looked like someone had already tried to sand it down but didn’t do the best job. So I thought, “Why not just paint everything black?”

Prepping a Dining Table for Paint

Now, prepping your furniture before painting is crucial. It’s gotta be done right if you want your paint to stick around. Imagine having kids or pets messing up your paint job because you skipped the prep. No thanks!

You can follow our guide on how to prepare furniture for painting if you’re not sure where to start.

Cleaning Before Painting a Dining Table

First things first, clean everything with a good degreasing cleaner. We used Krud Kutter and a damp rag. We even added brush attachments on our drill to help us scrub off the food stains, grease, and grime. Once that’s done, give it a good rinse with clean water and let it dry.

using a drill brush to clean surface of old table before painting

For more on how to clean furniture before painting, check out our post with all the tips and tricks you need to make sure your furniture is ready for a new coat of paint.

Scuff Sanding Before Painting a Dining Table

Next, grab some 150 grit sandpaper and medium grit pro foam pads (for the curves) and scuff everything up. You don’t need to remove the old finish, just roughen it up a bit, and remove the shine, so the paint and primer have something to grip onto.

If you skip this step, your paint might not last long. Trust me, a knife or fork hitting the paint can chip it off if you haven’t sanded it properly.

Sanding before painting furniture is key! So take your time with it and do it right. Once you’re done sanding, vacuum up the dust and wipe everything down with a tack cloth.

Priming Before Painting a Dining Table

Now, priming is super important. It helps the paint stick better and can even block stains from showing through. And if you’re painting black like us, this specific primer I used gives the paint better coverage.

We used Aqualock in black. This primer is great because it’s a sealer and it sticks really well. Plus, it’s already black so you save on the expensive paint.

pouring aqua lock primer to sprayer with filter

If you’re looking for the best primer for painting furniture, here’s our list of top-rated primers for wood, laminate, and more!

We mixed the primer into our paint sprayer, thinned it out with 20% water (I know it says not to, but it works for us), and sprayed it onto all the surfaces. Painting chairs can be tricky, but using a paint sprayer is way faster than using a brush or roller.

Read this post to learn more about the Best HVLP Paint Sprayers for Furniture!

A little trick we found was to lay the chairs on their backs first, spray what we could flip them over, spray again, then stand them up and spray the rest. Works like a charm to get everything sprayed in every direction!

Filling Scratches with Wood Filler

Alright, so after the primer dried, they didn’t look half bad. But if you got real close and personal, you could spot a bunch of scratches and dings I hadn’t bothered with yet. I was just curious to see how it’d all turn out once the primer was on.

So, I took this chance to fill in those scratches with some plastic wood filler. Here’s our list of the best wood fillers for furniture with a breakdown of the different types and their different uses.

applying wood filler to scratches and dings

I wouldn’t use it for big ol’ gouges, but for teeny tiny holes and scratches, works like a charm. I filled them up and let the wood filler dry for a few hours before I smoothed everything down with 220 grit sandpaper.

Then I sucked up the dust and gave everything a light sanding just to make it feel super smooth. I didn’t want any roughness!

The next step was to clean up the dust from the table and spray another coat on it. Let that baby dry for another hour, and voila! Depending on how good your spray coverage is, you might need one or two coats of primer to make sure it’s all covered properly.

Sanding Before Painting

Then I grabbed my sander, put it on the slowest speed, and used some fine grit pro foam pads to smooth everything out.

The goal wasn’t to sand off the primer, just wanted the paint to feel nice and smooth. Then I vacuumed everything again and wiped everything down with a tack cloth to get rid of any leftover dust.

The best sander for furniture depends on what type of material you’re working with and the desired finish, so get one that best suits your needs and budget as well.

Painting a Dining Table Black

Now let’s talk paint. When painting a dining table black, the best paint to use is an Alkyd or enamel type paint.

These paints are way stronger and more durable than chalk paints and mineral paints. And a satin finish or semi gloss finish is way better than a matte finish. Especially for a dining table, because a satin or semi-gloss finish is way easier to clean and keep looking fresh.

If you’re still wondering is chalk paint durable for kitchen table, check out this post to learn more.

spraying black paint onto a chair

So, I used this Sherwin Williams Emerald Urethane Trim Enamel in Tricorn Black and in a satin sheen. I mixed the paint with 20% water and managed to paint the table and chairs with less than a quart of paint. Not going to lie, I was kinda worried I wouldn’t have enough, but it worked out!

Read our post on painting furniture with enamel paint to know more about what to expect during the process.

This paint’s self-leveling, so it’s great for brushing or rolling and you won’t get much texture or brush marks left in the finish. Here’s our lists of the best paint brushes for painting furniture and the best rollers for painting furniture as your guide.

You do need to let it dry for four hours between coats though. I managed to get one full coat and most coverage, then sprayed a touch-up coat on the top of the table and chairs where I needed a bit more paint.

spraying black paint onto a table with a paint sprayer

After everything dried, it looked awesome! Oh, and this paint doesn’t need a topcoat. Actually, you shouldn’t use a topcoat on this paint. Let it dry for at least 24 hours before being very careful when you use it. Be extra careful with it for about 30 days until the paint is completely cured.

Check out this video of this makeover on Youtube below!

This mismatch set turned out super cute, don’t ya think? It looks modern and sleek, all painted black. Ready for its new home now!

close up view of black painted chair and table
full view photo of black painted table and chair

More Before And After Makeovers

Click any of these “before” photos below to view the “after” of that makeover.

close up view of black painted chairs and table

Painting a Dining Table Black

Painting a Dining Table Black

Discover our step-by-step guide on painting a dining table black, transforming your old furniture into a sleek and modern centerpiece with our durable and easy-to-clean paint choices.


  1. Clean the furniture with a degreasing cleaner.
  2. Scuff sand the furniture with 150 grit sandpaper and medium grit foam pads. Vacuum up the dust and wipe down with tack cloth.
  3. Apply 1-2 coats of primer (we used Aqualock in black). Let dry between coats, and make sure you have full coverage.
  4. Fill in scratches with wood filler, let dry completely, and then sand smooth with 220 grit sandpaper.
  5. Apply another coat of primer after dusting off the table.
  6. Smooth the primer with fine grit foam pads, then vacuum, and wipe down with tack cloth.
  7. Paint the furniture with an Alkyd or enamel type paint (we used Sherwin Williams Emerald Urethane Trim Enamel in Tricorn Black). Allow the paint to dry for at least 24 hours before carefully using it, and 30 days for it to completely cure.

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photo of table and chair before the makeover

One Comment

  1. To be very honest, we sold it, so we have no idea how this piece is fairing. Sorry!

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