Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Dresser staining

Over the long weekend I tried out staining an old dresser (13 years old) a darker color.  I decided on Minwax PolyShades (stain and polyurethane in one) in American Chestnut.

The dresser was a light honey color before -

I sanded it with 80 grit paper and followed up with 220 grit.  Wow 220 grit paper is awesome!  It made the surface so flat and smooth.  Awesome!!

After the first coat -

Looking ok.  I liked the color, but not the finish.  The wood looked really dry.  I don't want it to be super shiny, but this look was bad.

After some more reading on the Minwax website, I decided I just need a clear polyurethane coat in semi-gloss.  The PolyShades only comes in satin.  Opps!

Before I bought the clear polyurethane, I had some touch-ups on the front of the dresser and the second coat really made the difference (sorry no pictures).  I let it dry overnight before I decided what to do on the rest of the dresser....

It needed a second coat!
I guess stain and paint are the same, the second coat makes all the difference!

I am going to let the dresser dry/outgas for ~a week before moving it inside and taking finished pictures, but I love how it looks.

Oh, since I didn't open the polyurethane and it isn't a special mixed paint, I'll probably return it and save ~$12 on my project!

Tips for wood staining -
1. Double check the wood chips for the stain finish.  If you are looking for something more than satin, then I wouldn't get PolyShades.
2. Trust the directions - do a second coat before making any opinions on your work.
3. Definitely get mineral spirits to clean up the brush.
4. Work in a well ventilated area!  Even though I was outside, I wore a respirator and didn't smell a thing!

Happy staining!

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