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How To Paint A Wooden Chair - Furniture Painting Guide

The only guide you'll ever need to make old chairs new again


Don’t throw those old chairs away just yet! A fresh coat of paint may be all your kitchen chairs need to look like new again. Plus, painting your old chairs could be the perfect DIY project for a weekend painter. The process is simple, it won't take too long, and you can get started right away.

Ready to paint your wooden chairs?

Try these steps:

  1. Put your chair (or chairs) on a drop cloth. It will help your cleanup later.
  2. Clean off any dirt or dust with an old rag or any gentle degreasing agent, like dishwasher soap.
  3. Remove any peeling paint by gently sanding it off. Or, if the existing chair has stain on it, check to see if it needs to be removed. Use a dedicated stain stripper to return the wood to its original form.
  4. Putty any signs of damage or small cracks in the wood. Sand the putty with a mid-200-grit sandpaper until it runs smoothly with the surface.
  5. Wipe away any leftover dust.
  6. Apply a coat of primer in a uniform layer. Use an angled brush to make getting into the corners and crevices of the chair easier. Let the primer dry. If the surface is smooth, you are ready to paint. If you still notice unsmooth areas, apply a second coat of primer and let dry.
  7. Choose a paint that will be durable and easily cleaned. A paint like the Olympic Assure Interior will stand up to frequent use and good scrubbing when the need calls for it.
  8. Use a high-quality angled brush, not a roller, since your surfaces will be a series of curved, short and angled pieces. Latex paints work better with synthetic brushes and oil-based paints usually prefer natural brushes.
  9. Brush the paint in back and forth strokes that follow the direction of the wood grain. Let dry.

Once your first chair is finished, you’re ready to follow the same steps for the rest of the set. You will have a collection of hand-painted chairs and you only needed to follow a few steps when learning how to paint wooden chairs black. Oh, and this works for every color, so don’t feel limited to just black.

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