Hi helpful people. I’m purchasing a cintage dresser, and plan on removing the paint t, and refinishing the wood. I’m not sure what wood it’s made out of, but want to finish it in a walnut colour. Was looking on the Bunnings website, and it seems the options are Cabots, Sikkens, Timber Protect, or Feast & Watsons. I plan on putting poly on top to give it a durable surface. Any advice on which stain brand is best? I’ll prob use a timber primer first to ensure I get a good even stain finish. Here’s a picture of the dresser - as I said, no idea what wood is beneath it. Thanks!!
Thank you for sharing your question about what stain to use for your dresser.
I recommend considering where you will be placing the dresser in your house. Do you want it to blend in with the other furniture currently in that room? Do you want it to stand out and be a topic of discussion? This is an excellent opportunity to consider what kind of vision do you have for this dresser.
Most sealants, varnish, and stains are strong enough to protect your dresser. For example, the Bondall 250ml Monocel Walnut Stain and Varnish is a product that combines both stain and varnish. It is rated for inside and outside use and has UV protection features. However, if you are after a coastal look, I suggest Feast Watson 500ml Liming White. It gives you that chalk-finished look and provides superior protection. Please keep us updated, I'm sure our members are keen to see the start of yourproject.
Here is a handy step by step guide: How to restore wooden furniture
Let me tag our experienced members @prettyliving and DanaR for their recommendations.
If you need more advice or information, please let us know.
Thank you Eric! Much appreciated. The dresser will be inside, in a room that doesn’t get much light. There isn’t any other wood furniture in the room, so nothing to match it to. But I want a classic look, and I really like walnut. The Bondall sounds like a great option. Many thanks!!
Hi, what a beautiful dresser! Can’t wait to see what you do with it!
I’ve used Cabots stain & varnish before with good results. Because it has the varnish in it there was no need to apply a top coat.
Thank you! I’ve started removing the paint, and the wood is cedar. Hoping it looks ok stained 🤞
Finally finished! I ended up using Feast Watson stain in walnut. The sanding was so incredibly fiddly that I ended up painting part of it black.
Amazing work, @theparlourroom!
I wonder if that unit was originally timber and painted over at a later stage. That timber is exceptionally beautiful, and I can't imagine the manufacturer would have used such lovely wood if they were painted at the construction stage.
Did you have any difficulties or particular successes along the way? It always interests me to know the details of how something like this is achieved.
You've really done a wonderful job restoring this unit, and should be particularly proud of your efforts. I'm sure it will provide some great inspiration to our members.
Many thanks for sharing.
Thank you!! I’m sure it was painted at a later stage. Which is so unfortunate, as the paint really got into the grain of the wood and was impossible to remove in some places. I thought it was solid wood at first, but turns out it’s just laminate. So I could sand down too far. I found sanding around the trim on the drawers really tricky because the paint had gone into the gaps. And around the turned back and legs. And I used vinegar and water to deactivate the paint stripper on top, and it left black marks all over (used barkeeper’s friend to fix. Worked well). There were some bits around the drawers where the trim was loose, and I used wood glue to fix, but couldn’t sand it fully off as I was too worried about sanding too far. So the stain is really dark on those spots. I’m happy that I was able to cut off the mirror part and still keep the trim across the top of the dresser. And the stain turned out nicely. Thanks for your interest 😊😊 It’s my first project like this, and I’m really happy with how it turned out.
Thanks for the added detail @theparlourroom. It really helps to paint the picture.
I think one of the most honourable traits to have as a D.I.Y'er is the ability to show humility and to educate others in areas where we ourselves struggled. I know I get caught up in all these amazing transformations and fall into the trap of thinking something will be easy. Unfortunately, we seldom get to hear about the hours and hours of tedious work that goes on behind the scenes. Things go wrong, pieces break, we make mistakes, wrong/not enough items are purchased, extra cost is incurred, etc. It's all part of D.I.Y and projects like yours are prime examples of why it is all worthwhile.
Thanks again and I can't wait to see your next project!