When the COVID 2020 closing was underway and I, along with many others, realized that I had plenty of time to spare and was quickly getting bored of the latest Netflix shows to watch. I began looking for ways to fill the time that could be both enjoyable and productive for me since I was blessed to be working at home.

After several weeks of researching various alternatives and avoiding them due to various reasons I settled on refinishing furniture. I chose this option due to the fact that I might or might never be addicted to the Facebook marketplace and obtaining an excellent deal. I came across an unfinished dresser that needed some TLC according to the saying and I couldn't resist the chance to test something different. After deciding on a date and time to take it home I began to search seeking out any information I could gather about how to restore furniture. I joined a group on Facebook about it, listened to a variety of YouTube videos but most importantly, I needed to conduct a bit of trial and error with the furniture.

In the coming posts, and today, I'll try to guide you through the basic knowledge I've gained over the course of a year or so, re-doing various furniture pieces. I will try to break it down into digestible parts and you should be aware that I will link numerous videos, articles and other sources to make it as easy as I can in getting beginning.

To help you get inspired, here is a comparison from one of my first pieces. I purchased the dresser for free on Facebook marketplace. After a few needed adjustments the dresser was set to be put in a new place.

What You'll Need

We'll dive right into the things you'll be looking for when you plan to finish furniture. I suggest looking over some of the essential things you'll need to do before starting. While refinishing furniture can be very expensive when you consider certain tricks for saving I've been spending a lot of money on it in the last two years. It's a big expense due to the quantity of items that you require for one piece, especially in the case of a larger piece that requires more materials! I've included a brief list of items below that I've found to be absolutely essential to complete this kind of job. I have provided rough cost estimates for the medium-sized project so you have a clear idea of what costs you will be paying.

Things you'll definitely require include:

Sandpaper (sanding sponges also work) = $12

Old T-shirts with a smudge (I have discovered that these are ideal for cleaning the furniture) = FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

Paintbrushes (invest in better ones which will not shed as much if you are able to) is about $10.

Foam paint rollers cost $12.

The plastic paint holder costs $3.

Foam brushes = $5

Shower curtain or paint sheet for keeping paint from the floor as much as you can = $2

Basic Screw Drivers to remove hardware for $15

Shellac Primer = $20

Paint (I have found some fantastic colors in the "Oops" section in stores such as Lowes) Between $8 to $30+

Stain if you'd prefer to use that method with your piece.

Water-based Polyurethane = $12

It is evident that these things add up to around $115. Based on the size and brands you decide to purchase, that figure may be more. This is the reason I suggest making sure that you have enough money to cover the essentials at a minimum. It is not a good idea to get halfway through a project only to discover that you aren't able to complete it! Be aware that not everything you've got will be consumed in the first project, so you may have some materials left to use in the next project.

Once we've got this piece removed There are some things I suggest purchasing that aren't necessary for the project however it will help you and can save you a considerable chunk of time.

The first was an electronic sander, as sanding manually without any assistance was a bit difficult. I believe it's worth the expense to be able to finish sanding quicker and using a bit lesser elbow grease. Sanding is the least enjoyable component of the entire process. It could also cause this to be the case.

The plastic gloves are also great to keep around for staining or painting. They simply shield your hands, so you don't need to spend 15-30 minutes scrubbing your hands after working on your piece that you've worked on for the day. Stain is particularly bad and I'll never let anything stain without wearing these as it was too difficult to take it off my fingers at time of my departure.

It's that simple! This is the budget and suggested shopping list to begin. Keep an eye on my next blog post on selecting and making the first item. You are welcome to ask questions below or share any tips that have helped you!

About the Author

Emma currently works in the field of software sales for a firm located within Dallas, TX. She has always enjoyed engaging her creative side. She enjoys going thrift-shopping in her spare time in search of her next creative project. In addition to her full-time job and her creative pursuits, Emma also loves spending time outside with her husband. Roman

About CouchCycled

CouchCycled offers a no-cost furniture and couch removal to reduce the amount of furniture that is discarded in Fort Worth and Dallas while helping the community. The couches that are removed are refurbished and then resold for a reasonable cost. A portion of the proceeds are donated.