MY FIRST REFINISHING EXPERIENCENovember 23, 2016
So I might have broke the sander? I mean, it was a hand-me-down and let's be honest, I had no idea what I was doing. I am happy to report I was not harmed in the making of my very first furniture refinish and it certainly won't be my last. I just may have to buy a new sander....
Is anything real wood anymore? I'm thinking no. Everything seems to be this cheap pressed wood material, yet they feel like can charge you $200 or more for it. The bookshelf above wasn't priced terribly, but the thought of spending that on glorified cardboard just really made my skin crawl.
That's where I got this idea. This little bookcase is a Joshua original. No, really. He made this in high school! If we're being totally honest, I have hated this thing for years. It used to sit in our living room before Pen could walk and pull everything off of it. Then, we moved it into our bedroom where we stacked junk on it and Sam used the side of it as a scratching post. When we moved, I didn't want it in the house, so I stuck it in the sun room and put plants on it. That was, until a few weeks ago, when I was feeling adventurous.
Originally, I wanted something drastic color wise, like the stock photo of the shelf above. Since this was my first go, I decided against it, and went with a color a little more "safe." Minwax, Special Walnut seemed to fit that safe category and I though with that shade, there's no way I wouldn't like it.
As my last coat came to a dry, I pulled the bookshelf out into the driveway for a better look in the sun. It was bubbly, and sticky and my heart sank a bit. I did what all sensible women do before telling their husband and consulted Google. The first site to me I messed up and used too much stain and needed to sand it all off and start over. Not at all what I wanted to hear so I kept looking. The second online source told me to dump an huge about of stain on top of the sticky, wait 15 minutes, and wipe it off. Man am I happy I found that little tip. Within a half hour, the sticky was gone and I had smooth, beautiful wood!
For my first ever refinishing project, I think I did a pretty great job. I look back and sort of wish I had used a more drastic stain, but really, these pictures just don't do it justice. Before, the entire side of it was scratched and splintering, and now it's smooth and rich in color. The best part? I saved hundreds. Total cost of this project was about $6!