Reclaiming antique furniture like a set of drawers is a good way to recycle old furniture and put them back to good use. Usually it is cost effective and you can easily make the furniture to suit your tastes. An Often, all you need for a comfortable old back to life is a new coat of paint. You can quickly paint the old drawers with semi-gloss latex paint to give your drawers a long-lasting painted surface. The same process also works for unpainted wood surfaces such as new drawers, plated wood drawers and even colored drawers.
- Empty the drawers of any contents and place them on a canvas to prevent the paint from falling on your carpet. Place the cabinet on the canvas as well unless you are not painting the dresser to match the drawers.
- Remove the handles from the drawers with a screwdriver and set them aside.
- Put painter’s tape behind the sides of the drawer and around the portion of the drawer box to prevent paint from reaching wood surfaces that are not receiving paint.
- Sand the wood surfaces with a dry 600 grit sandpaper to give the primer an area of better adhesion. Clean the drawers and the cabinet with an anti-static cloth to remove all dust. If the drawers were painted or dyed previously, you do not have to sand the bare wood. Also, if the wood is unpainted or veneered, you must go ahead and complete the sanding step. This will soften the exposed wood fibers and scrape the veneer surface to give the primer something to adhere to.
- Apply a latex primer to a paint roller and roll the paint roller through the prepared surfaces in the drawers and the chest of drawers. A paint roller will apply a uniform layer and will avoid the marks of a brush. Allow sufficient time for the primer to dry. Follow the instructions on the can for drying times so you can take into account the humidity in the paint area. If the drawers do not have paint on them, a second coat may be necessary. Drawers and painted sheet drawers should only require one layer.
- Apply a semi-gloss latex paint to a paint roller and roll the paint roller through the prepared surfaces in the drawers and the chest of drawers. Again, allow enough time for the paint to dry. Inspect the finished surface for any point where you can see the primer being displayed. If you find one, add a second coat of semi-gloss paint for the drawers.
- Allow 24 hours for drying, remove the painter’s tape from the drawers and reconnect the accessories.
Tips & Warnings
- If your crates have large cracks or dents not removed by sanding, you can use wood putty to fill in the imperfections after completing the sanding process. Add the filling, wait for it to dry and then complete a second sanding to level the filling with the surface of the wood. This will hide any imperfection.
- You can replace a paint roller with a paint spray gun without air, which will produce a finer and smoother surface. You can use a paintbrush if you want textured paint. Use a roller for the primer and the first layer of latex, then apply a second layer with the brush.