Here she is in her craigslist add… doesnt look too bad from far away, but up close she was a wreck. Read about tearing out her insides here. It’s pretty amazing how much of a difference a little stripper and sanding will do to bring a piece back to life! Meet the helpers:
Ok, before we move on… beware! if you have an unusually pansy-ish stomach, you may not want to read on. Stripping was actually pretty yucky. The varnish came up in a bunch of gunk. Anyway, step one: just start paintin!
I threw on two fairly thick layers because it was unusually tough varnish. I actually attempted to use the refinisher first and epic fail. But lo and behold, the varnish had nothin on this orange goop. 15 minutes later and you’ve got this:
Those beautiful little bubbles and wrinkles are from the varnish getting whooped by the sorbet stripper. booya. Next step, get your scrapper and just go crazy. It should come off pretty easily, if not, either wait an extra 10 minutes or go back over the splotchy areas a second time. Usually if it doesnt come up right away, it’s just because you were too excited to wait the entire 15 minutes (might have happened to me a few times!)
Oh i know, that stuff looks like Dino snot. Still, very exciting how effective this stuff is. Here is the lid to show you a good before and after:
Now I know what you’re thinking… “wow, the before looks so much better!” Well of course it does! We are stripping, not finishing! This is a bit of a process but keep in mind, you are stripping down to the bare wood to then refinish and restain to make her look brand stinkin new. Just wait till this next part… After i stripped all the wood, i went back over it with the furniture finisher and steel wool. It helped take more of the stain off as well.
Who knew there was actually wood under all that crap?! i went on to sand it to get out some of the deeper scratches. I sanded pretty lightly since it was veneer but enough to smooth it out more. Most likely there will still be some scratches (she was pretty beat up!) But really that just adds a little vintage character, but i also plan on a slightly darker stain which will make the scratches less noticeable. Don’t forget to always, always, always, always, ALWAYS sand with the grain! No circles, no angles… just straight with the grain. Just trust me on this one. Well there ya have it!
Next week: rebuilding the inside and front panels! Super excited and I plan on doing it all for free with scraps! What what!