Transform the look of your furniture with these simple steps. In the below step by step guide we will show you how to paint solid wood furniture and how to paint laminate furniture.

Like all painting, preparation is key and this is especially true if you are painting a tricky surface like laminate, melamine or MDF. With the development of paint and primers, virtually every surface is now paintable. So if you are upcycling a bathroom cabinet or trying to paint Ikea furniture, we're here to help. 

Step 1: Sand and dust

The first stage in the process is to lightly sand the wardrobe. This will open the surface and give the primer and undercoat a good surface to adhere to. Lightly sand all areas to be painted using a fine sandpaper or sanding pad. We like a sanding pad as it is easy to use and hold, especially for sanding larger areas. When you’re finished sanding, dust down the furniture. Sanding is a really important step as it will create a smooth finish.

Step 2: Cleaning

After sanding, you will want to clean down the furniture to remove any grease, grime and dirt. Using sugar soap and warm water, wipe down the furniture thoroughly. After cleaning, allow to fully dry prior to priming and undercoating.

Step 3: Priming and undercoating furniture

Depending on the surface you are painting, you will more than likely need to prime and undercoat the surface before painting your topcoat. However, if you are painting a previously painted surface there is no need to undercoat and prime, you will be able to skip this step.

For other surfaces like untreated wood, laminate, melamine or MDF you will need to apply an undercoat and primer. For this we recommend using Fleetwood Bloxx-It Undercoat & Primer or Zinsser B-I-N Primer. These all in one products will undercoat, prime and seal the furniture, making it ready for the topcoat. Paint two coats of either of these primers onto your furniture. They are an oil based product so drying times are a little longer than water based paint, so be sure to allow adequate drying time between coats. We recommend cutting in with a 2” cutting in paint brush and rolling with a Two Fussy Blokes 4” smooth roller sleeve. You will need to clean both your brush and roller with methylated spirits as it is an oil based product. Depending on the colour you are using for your topcoat, we can tint these primers to a darker colour if needed. Please get in touch with us if you’d like us to tint your Bloxx-It primer and undercoat. If you are painting bare wood, these primers will also prevent the knots coming through on your topcoat.

How to prime furniture with Zinsser BIN Primer or Fleetwood Bloxx It

Step 4: Painting furniture

Choose from any of the colours from the Farrow & Ball, Colourtrend, Vogue, Pantone or Popular Colours for a beautifully painted piece of furniture. Once you’ve applied 2 coats of Fleetwood Bloxx-It and allowed it to dry, you can paint your top coat. You can choose any of the colours from Paint Online that are available in an eggshell, satin or gloss finish. Using a similar process to step three, cut in with your 2” cutting in brush and paint the other areas with a 4” roller. The Two Fussy Blokes 4” Smooth roller sleeve will leave a beautiful smooth finish. Paint two coats of your chosen topcoat colour. Drying times will be less between coats with any of the water based products which we recommend using for painting your furniture. If you are painting a dark or bright colour, sometimes you may need to apply three coats to bring up the true colour of the paint. Be sure to allow suffienct drying times between coats for best results.

What paint finish to choose for furniture:

There are three main finishes when it comes to painting furniture – Eggshell, Satin and Gloss. The main difference between these finishes is their sheen level. This will vary slightly between the different brands. 

Eggshell is the least shiny of the three finishes. Eggshell appears almost like a matt finish in comparision to both satin and gloss with a low sheen level. 

Satin or satinwood finishes are well suited to woodwork and metal, providing a velvety mid sheen finish. Satin is typically the most common choice of finish when it comes to painting furniture. 

Gloss is the shiniest of the three finishes and is a great option if you are looking to create impact and particularly if you are using primary colours. It's easy to clean and reflects lots of light, but should only be used on perfectly smooth surfaces, which is why it’s absolutely key to prep your surface correctly if opting for a gloss finish.

How to paint laminate furniture - Betsy 1920 Fleetwood Pink Colour - Paint Online Ireland

Betsy 1920 Deep (Cabinet), Betsy 1920 Dark (Wall)

How to paint laminate furniture - Furze Lane Colourtrend - Yellow Colourtrend Paint Colour - Paint Online Ireland

Furze Lane, Colourtrend Paint Colour

We would love to see how your painted furniture turned out. Be sure to send us a picture or tag us on social media.