How to Paint White Furniture

Hi everyone, Denise from Salvaged Inspirations here!

We’re going back to basics. Clean. Classic. How to Paint Furniture White!

I have a fail-proof technique down pat… which I hope will help you too. If you’re looking to update your furniture in a perfect white finish, I promise these tips will save you time, money and a ton of frustration!

Materials List:

How To:

I started with this vintage china cabinet I found at the ReStore which are notorious for bleedthrough.

STEP 1 – CLEAN

The very first step to painting a perfectly white piece of furniture is clean and prep. This is the most important step… especially when using WHITE! Seriously, you don’t want to put a crisp clean white on top of a surface that has any dirt, grime or grease on it. Cleaning with TSP, White Lightning, or any other grease cutter product is a must.

Check out my tutorial video below!

STEP 2 – PRIME

I started by giving this cabinet a super good cleaning and then a light sanding and BIN primer to kill the bleedthrough.

When I don’t want to use a smelly shellac-based product or I have more time to get my project done, this is my go-to…

BOSS WATER BASED PRIMER – BLOCKS ODORS, STAINS, AND STOPS BLEEDTHROUGH

The benefits of BOSS –

1 It comes in white AND CLEAR which is amazing when I want some original wood showing through.

2 It costs much less than BIN Shellac Primer.

3 It doesn’t have fume odors because it’s water based.

The trade-off is time. You can apply a second coat of BOSS within 2-3 hours however it requires a 24 hour set time before applying your paint. If you’re a professional furniture painter, this may not always be convenient however if you’re painting a piece for your home, its the perfect alternative.

STEP 3 – SAND & REMOVE DUST BETWEEN EACH COAT

For a smooth professional finish, I sand between every coat. This includes primer and paint. Nothing crazy. But a light once over (like wiping down a kitchen counter) with a 220 grit makes a world of difference!

STEP 4 – PAINT A MINIMUM OF TWO COATS

Whenever I use white or off white paint, I always paint at least 2 coats. Three coats are often required to get that perfect white finish.

STEP 5 – TOP COAT AND PROTECT

I can’t tell you how many times I used to paint in white, it looked magnificent UNTIL I applied a topcoat. Only then, would the bleedthrough rear its ugly head. SO FRUSTRATING after I put in all that work!

To protect this china cabinet, I could have sprayed or brushed a poly or used clear wax, but I opted for this white wax for a beautiful satin finish.

Head over to Salvaged Inspirations here for more details on this painted piece!

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