A Little Bit About Finishing Dresser Tops
I had a conversation yesterday with Deb over at Confessions of a Craigslist Junkie about removing laminate from the top of those French dressers from the 60’s-90’s… you know the white slick looking topped ones… well she just painted this gorgeous dresser, top and all, I think it’s lovely the way she painted it, but I also knew that she had the option of staining the top if she had wanted to. I thought I’d share with you a few experiences I’ve had so a little information is coming your way!
The pieces pictured below I wanted to share with you so you could see how I removed the white slick laminate looking top and what I discovered underneath! You see I don’t really think it’s laminate at all, I think it is a type of “paint” or surface that is a specialty coat of some sort, but not laminate, I could TOTALLY be wrong here but you be the judge based on the evidence below… I have 3 examples of mine to share with you…
Here is your typical dresser from the early 80’s. It’s hard to tell in the sunlight but this was most certainly that slick looking white surface.
I sanded it down starting with 100 grit paper, then 150 ultimately finishing with 220. Using my orbital sander I didn’t have to worry about going with the grain of the wood… it just sanded down like any other painted surface and I was left with the top below… amazing right?
This is what it looked like after some dark walnut stain and a coat of wax!
This is the matching nightstand to the dresser above, same top, same process…
BOOM!! pretty solid wood underneath that gross surface.
All pretty now with a dark walnut stain and a coat of wax.
This one someone had painted the entire piece, but the white slick surface was just underneath this lovely yellow paint. I used the same process as before…
GORGEOUS solid wood top, stained dark walnut and waxed! I kept this chest because I loved it so much I couldn’t let it go!
So next time you walk by one of “those” pieces think about trying to sand down the surface to reveal the beauty beneath! I’m no expert and I’m certainly not saying every piece will turn out like the ones above, but it can’t hurt to try right? That is what I did and I loved the results!
Good luck and go sand something!
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Posted on August 1, 2013, in Furniture refinishing and tagged how to refinish furniture, laminate surface paint, painting furniture, removing laminate off furniture, stained wood top, using a sander, vintage french furniture. Bookmark the permalink. 24 Comments.