Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Stanley Dresser Set

I've been wanting a new paint sprayer for a while now. The one I have is an airless one, meaning it doesn't connect to an air compressor, it just plugs in to the wall, and it uses a lot of paint and sprays it on very thick. That sprayer has been great for projects like painting balusters and my patio beams, and my mudroom etc, but it just won't cut it for giving a professional finish on a piece of furniture.

So a few months back I went hunting for a new sprayer that wouldn't cost me an arm and a leg, and I found one at Harbor Freight on sale for $10! To my huge disappointment, I needed a really large air compressor for this unit, and I hadn't anticipated that kind of investment. Craigslist to the rescue, and I had myself a 30 gallon air compressor for less than the cost of selling a newly painted dresser.

Now I have a spray booth set up in our garage and am loving the finish this thing gives. Spraying is quick, the cleanup is easy, and the finish is smooth as glass. I was elated when I finished my first dresser set with the sprayer! I couldn't believe how professional it looked!

I was commissioned to refinish this set for a nice couple who bought my hutch and were impressed with my work. I can't even express what an incredible feeling that was! The day after buying the hutch they dropped off 7 pieces of their furniture into my already full garage and told me they'd be back in a month to pick it up. EEKS (!!!!). I was so overwhelmed, yet also totally elated that someone was trusting me whole-heartedly to refinish that much furniture for them.

And this wasn't just any old dresser set. This was a Stanley dresser set. With beautiful curves and perfect craftsmanship. This is the kind that people spend thousands of dollars on. But really, the appearance is quite out-dated now so my clients wanted something new and modern. Plus, the tops of all three pieces had water damage on them.

My first step was to strip the current finish off the tops. I used Citristrip Safer Paint and Varnish Stripping Gel and lemme tell you this stuff is awesome. It was quick and easy, and didn't have that harmful "you will die if you breathe me or touch me" thing about it that most varnish strippers do.

After that, the tops were fresh and clean and ready to go. No sanding required.

I finished the dresser tops with 4 coats of General Finishes Java Gel Stain and sealed it with 3 coats of GF Gel Topcoat in Satin.

Then, I taped and covered the tops, sprayed the bodies with Benjamin Moore's Linen White in their Advance paint, and used a medium-dark brown glaze to highlight all the details. (oh, and I always ALWAYS clean and lightly sand every piece before I paint it)

The finished product was stunning!!

It was exactly what my clients wanted! They loved it! 

What a difference!

The other day I even got to see it set up in their bedroom. I delivered their last piece of furniture (a single nightstand which I'll write about later!) and I got to see the bookshelves, the hutch, and these dressers displayed and in use. It was SUCH a treat to see my work in their new environment!!