refinishing shelves: prime, paint, and presto!

refinishing shelves: prime, paint, and presto!

So far we've covered materials and prep, now on to the fun part: paint!

As you've seen in the before photos, the shelves I'm refinishing started off black and rust colored. 

With such strong existing colors, priming was essential. However, I'd recommend at least one coat of primer regardless of your pre-existing or new paint color. Primer helps create an even surface for optimal paint application. 

1. Priming: for my shelves, I used KILZ multi-surface stain blocking interior oil-based primer in white. With the surface already sanded and prepped, I first used a foam brush to apply primer in the oh so many corners and edges of my shelves. Quickly after that, I used the paint roller to apply primer everywhere else and smooth the lines from the corners and edges.

2. Once the primer is completely dry (follow the recommendations on the primer can - don't rush it!), you'll want to pull that sanding tool back out with the finest grit paper (220). Lightly sand the entire unit so that you can cleanly apply another coat of primer (or if you're REALLY REALLY sure it's ready, your first coat of paint).

3. Then repeat step 1 with a second coat of primer. You'll notice how much of a difference a second coat makes. 

4. Repeat step 2. Lightly sand your second prime coat so that the piece is ready for paint. Noticing a pattern? There's a lot of complete and repeat in the priming and painting process :)

5. Paint! Have I mentioned this is my favorite part? For the base, I selected a semi-gloss interior paint. For the color I used Benjamin Moore: Stone 2112-40, because I wanted a darker shade of the tone of our walls.

Using the same technique as described in step 1, use the foam brush and paint roller to apply your first coat of paint. Don't worry about streaks or brush marks. A second (or third, if needed) coat of paint will make that disappear.

6. You guessed it: lightly sand your first coat of paint.

7. And then apply a second coat of paint. 

8. For my project, two coats was enough. So as a final step, I applied a single coat of Miniwax Polycrylic Protective Finish using a synthetic brush

In my next post, I'll share side-by-side before and after photos. But for now, I'll leave you with one more tip:

* If you're working on your project outside, make sure you have lots of small heavy objects nearby to help hold down your drop cloth. As you'll see below, I didn't do this at first... but I ended finding my son's toys super handy ;)

refinishing shelves: before and after!

refinishing shelves: before and after!

refinishing shelves: prep

refinishing shelves: prep