Welcome to Furniture Refinishing Guide!

Furniture repair and refinishing is a rewarding process. Old furniture can be an excellent investment. Handmade pieces are typically better-made than their modern, MDF counterparts. If you find an all-wood dresser or desk that’s structurally sound but looks worse for the wear, snap it up!

Depending on the starting condition of your piece, you may have very little work to do; just some minor cleaning and repairs (known in the trade as “restoration”) will bring the item back to its former glory. On the other hand, most second-hand furniture has seen extensive abuse. Understanding how to do more advanced repairs, totally strip the piece, and refinish it can help you create a stunning armoire or dining room set for very little money- certainly less than buying new! These pages are designed to help you do just that.

Cost and quality may be the main reasons people choose to refinish furniture, but there are other benefits as well. Remember the old adage, “reduce, re-use, and recycle”? From an ecological standpoint, refurbishing old things will always win out over buying new.

There are surprising health benefits, too. Glues and finishes on modern furniture can off-gas for months or even years; if someone in your family is chemically sensitive, this can translate to headaches, sore throats, and respiratory problems. By choosing all wood furniture that has had a chance to age, you eliminate this problem. But wait! Won’t refinishing require a whole new crop of irritating chemicals? Not really. Choose pieces that are structurally sound, use water-based glues and fillers (not solvent based epoxies), and choose a natural finish, like tung oil.

Want to learn more about furniture refinishing? Browse our site! Whether you need help finding secondhand furniture, evaluating your “new” piece, or stripping the old piece and applying a new finish, we’ve got you covered!

Ready to get started? Our furniture refinishing tips will help make your experience more enjoyable!


  • Refinishing a coffee table.

    This particular piece of furniture was previously refinished. Unfortunately the preparation and finishing was not done correctly. There are many deep scratches on the top and ...
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    Cost to Refinish Furniture

    You’ve probably heard that the cost of refinishing furniture is excessive. Actually, the cost of refinishing furniture varies greatly depending on a number of factors. And while ...
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    Finding a Furniture Refinishing Service

    If you’ve acquired an antique in less than stellar condition, you may be considering the help of a furniture refinishing service. If you’re like me, you may see splendor in ...
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    Furniture Restoration Services

    Furniture Restoration Services — What is furniture restoration and what can a service do for you? Whether to use a professional furniture restoration service, or attempt the ...
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    Distressing Furniture

    The Process of Distressing Furniture Adds an Aged Look Distressing a piece of relatively new furniture is a great way to make it look older than it really is. Old furniture has ...
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    Creating Woodworm Holes in Furniture for an Authentic Antique Look

    Worm holes occur naturally in some old wood furniture, but creating woodworm holes is a way to antique newer wood furniture. Let’s learn more about naturally occurring furniture ...
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    Glazing Furniture

    Glazing Furniture – Common paint glazing techniques to try for a one of a kind look. Glazing furniture is used in antiquing furniture to change the surface of the piece. Glazing ...
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    Crackle Painting Furniture

    Crackling is a Way to add an Antique Look to Any Piece of Wood Furniture Crackling is a popular method of painting that can be used on both furniture and walls. When applied to ...
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    Faux Patina on Painted Furniture

    Creating an Aged Look with Faux Patina on Painted Furniture A distressed faux patina can be created on painted furniture that mimics the wear all furniture goes through over time. ...
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    Chamfering Furniture

    Chamfering – Get a wear-aged look with minimal effort. Chamfering furniture is an incredible way to create the look of wear-aged furniture. It’s a subtle distressing technique ...
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    Stenciling Furniture for a Unique Look

    Stenciling is one the most inexpensive ways to transform a piece of furniture. Supplies are minimal, and investment of your time is negligible. Because there are thousands of ...
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    Oak Wood Graining Technique

    Oak wood graining is a fantastic faux wood grain effect. With practice it’s rather easy to accomplish, and when compared to buying a piece of oak furniture, oak graining is much ...
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    Faux Marble Painting on Furniture

    The classic look of marble is hard to beat. Marble is rich, durable and ever-so eye catching. Marble is often associated with wealth and class. Unfortunately, marble is also very ...
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    Faux Leather Look on Furniture

    How To Paint a Faux Leather Look on Furniture Who doesn’t love the look of leather? Leather screams luxury. Leather is timeless, warm, and sophisticated. And there’s no doubt ...
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    Creative Furniture Painting Ideas

    A Few Less Common Creative Painting Furniture Ideas There are many creative furniture painting ideas, some of which are more common than others. Typically, when we talk about ...
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