If you have outdated chairs in your home you don’t have to replace them! I am going to show you how to paint wood chairs and breath a bit of new life into them for many more years to come.
When my husband and I got married his parents gave us this kitchen table so we went to our local Meijer and bought these wood chairs.
They were great chairs, super sturdy, but they had that 80’s orange wood tone that has not stood the test of time. I feel like there are a lot of people who can relate to this.
Great chairs just need a little makeover!
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What you will need:
- sandpaper – I love this pack because it has many different grits to allow you to complete the whole project.
- paint – color of your choice
- foam brush
How to Paint Chairs
After a while, these chairs started showing some serious wear and tear. And of course, that color…yuck!
I decided on a black color for the chairs after I refinished my dining table a light gray. I put board and batten on the walls and it’s white so I felt like if I painted them white it would be too much white.
Sand the Chairs
The first thing you need to do is sand, using the same technique as I used on the refinished antique chairs. These chairs didn’t need to be sanded down as much as the antique ones did because we are painting them.
I will admit though, I went to town and probably sanded way more than I needed to. I am a complete perfectionist and it’s something I am working on! Haha, 😣
Starting with 80 grit sandpaper give everything a good sanding, then move on to 120 grit and finish up with 220 grit for a smooth finish.
Paint the Chairs
After sanding, clean really well to get all the dust off. Put down plastic or a tarp and turn the chairs over. Paint the bottom and the legs then turn the chair over and finish the top. Most likely you will need two coats of paint for good coverage.
After 1 coat.
After 2 coats
If you want a distressed look you can take a sanding block to the edges of the chair as much as you want. If you go too far no worries, just add a little paint!
Poly the Chairs
Once the paint is done apply polycrylic in the same manner. Polycrylic is a water-based sealer which is what you should use after painting with water-based paint.
I think they look great!!! And I think they go really nicely with the gray stained table.
UPDATE: It’s been several years since I painted these chairs and I am happy to report that they have held up amazingly! I think the key to their durability has been the poly I applied over the paint.
Related Wood Furniture Posts:
- How to Refinish Wood Chairs withought Stripping
- A DIY Vintage Desk Makeover Using Fusion Mineral Paint
- How to Make a Table from a Tree Slice
- How to Build Industrial Shelves
- DIY Table Top: Fixing a Broken Patio Table on a Budget
- How to Build a Bench from Scratch
- DIY Blanket Ladder for under $30
- DIY Herringbone Headboard (and New Bedding)
- Antique Vanity Makeover Using Marble Contact Paper
- DIY Built-Ins Using Big Box Store Cabinets
- How to Fix a Missing Chunk of Wood with Bondo
How to Paint Wood Chairs
Learn how to paint wood chairs for an instant update!
- Sand the chairs
- Clean off all the sawdust
- Flip the chairs over and paint the legs and base around the legs
- Turn the chairs upright and paint everything else
- Allow 24 hours dry time then add another coat of paint
- Allow another 24 hours of dry time
- Apply polycrylic
- Allow 24 hours of dry time
- Repeat steps 7 and 8, 2 more times
Monday 21st of February 2022
These chairs turned out so cute! I love the color. I am working on updating our kitchen here in Broad Ripple and would love to paint our chairs. We are having our kitchen cabinets refinished next week so maybe after that! Thanks so much for sharing!!!
Monday 25th of October 2021
Hi there! Currently planning on painting similar chairs black as well- (we got them in the glorious 80’s orange from fb with the hopes to refinish them!) I’m thrilled to hear your chairs have held up after so many years since most tutorials like this fail to mention the time test, and black paint can be known for chipping!
I’m Wondering what kind/brand of black paint you used? As well as brush types and brand of polycrylic?
Thanks so much, Gaby M.
Saturday 17th of September 2022
@Gaby, did you ever get an answer to your question about the paint color/brand? I just came across this and would love to also know this as I am painting 4 of the same chairs black. Thank you~ sophia