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How to Decide Whether You Should Refinish or Paint Your Old Furniture

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Most furniture experts agree it’s better to renew your old furniture rather than replace it with something new. Granted, there are times when it is time to get rid of something old. Burnt orange shag carpet is always on that list, but not all old things are destined for the garbage. Professionals caution not to toss wood furniture with abandon. Why? Because chances are good there’s not only life left in it, but the potential for greatness you haven’t considered. Before dragging that old scarred table across the hardwood floor, out the door, and down to the curb, stop. Consider what the experts advise.

Evaluate Current Condition

Making a rash decision is never wise. In every decision-making process, evaluation is key. You need to evaluate the current condition of your furniture to see if it still has life left to give or if it’s time to kick it to the curb. Extensive fire or water damage is irreversible but mild water damage can be recoverable depending on the condition of the piece. Cracks in wood can be repaired, loose screws can be tightened, and peeling paint is a simple fix. Many wood furniture pieces are not beyond repair, it just means you’ll have to put in the time and effort to have them repaired. Better yet, you’ll have to find the right professional to restore it for you.

You should also consider the need your furniture meets. Does it hold your clothes, does it provide a seat, is it a stable table? Even if the answer to these is a hesitant yes, a professional can help make sure the final piece meets your exact needs and wants. Drawers can be added, cushioning can be provided, and stability can be added. It’s all a matter of how much you love the piece and want to continue its lifespan.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]

Signs of Needed Refinishing

There are a few noticeable signs you may see that signal a clear need for furniture refinishing or repainting. Some are personal preference while some leave your furniture exposed to further and potentially irreversible damage. Either way, there’s usually a clear sign that you’ll need to seek a professional furniture restoration expert to revive it soon.

  • Peeling or flaking paint
  • The stain has worn out unevenly
  • Rings or watermarks visible
  • The surface feels uneven or sticky
  • Exposed wood
  • Change in style


Personal Preference or Professional Opinion?

A decision is often driven by personal preference. It’s when indecision sets in that a coin comes in handy. Or, if you aren’t a fan of leaving things to chance, there are some things to consider. If your grandma would gasp on Thanksgiving when she sees you painted the 150-year-old armoire, you might want to rethink that chalk paint you’ve been eyeing. If the item is an antique, basic research should be done to avoid a decision that could diminish its value. An antique wood piece should always be refinished by a professional to ensure its integrity is kept intact and the finished product doesn’t diminish its monetary and sentimental value.

Refinishing shows off the beauty of the wood itself, while painting shows off a decorating style and color choice. Painting can also cover imperfections and allows for versatility in decorating. It can blend in or stand out, be wild and unique, or it can be stately. It could also offer some cost savings, but a quality paint job is never cheap.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]

DIY or Don’t DIY

No matter which side of the painting/refinishing fence you land on, workmanship is key. If you choose to do it yourself, make sure you are prepared. Both the refinishing and painting process can lead to difficulty or challenges if you’re not experienced in furniture restoration. If you intend to display your piece prominently in your home or business, a professional is the way to go. What if you don’t have any cool, old worn-out furniture to restore? Have some fun hunting for some at a garage or estate sale. Not only could you discover some great finds at reasonable prices, but the added cost of having them professionally restored or painted could still be less than new and, if it’s older than 1960, it was probably built better than much of the furniture produced today.

If you want a fun project to spend quality time alone, with a friend, or your child, refinishing a lower-quality piece is a fine option. If you choose the DIY route, and lovingly strip every layer of paint off an old table, only to discover that it was made from scraps of wood in a quirky mosaic even a five-year-old could improve on, it’s ok. You can still paint right over it.

There are a few times we’d approve of a DIY project when it comes to furniture restoration. Part of our hesitation comes from the fact that we know the outcome won’t be perfect and partly because we’ve seen projects started and never finished. We want your finished piece to be something you’re proud of and a piece you can pass on to your children. Family heirlooms begin somewhere, so start one.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]

Choosing Quality Craftsmanship

If you’re tired, don’t have the time, or aren’t convinced your DIY skills meet your expectations, our team at Wehrli Furniture is ready to take on your project and give you peace of mind. We will help you sort through the many options, walk you through the process, and make sure the choice you make is the right one for your ideal outcome. Our restoration experts know how to properly and carefully refinish or repaint any type of furniture and ensure the finished product is beautiful and durable. It’s not just our job, it’s our passion to revive old wood furniture and create an item in your home or office that will bring you joy as it satisfies a functional need. We meet all your furniture needs by offering professional furniture services including restoration, painting, upholstery, and custom design. Contact us today to begin your refinishing project and be sure to check out our gallery to view our previous projects for inspiration and affirmation you’ve chosen the right team to take on your task.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_btn title=”Contact Us” shape=”square” align=”center” link=”|title:Contact%20Us||”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_media_grid element_width=”6″ grid_id=”vc_gid:1565705504511-bb8d64b8-5314-4″ include=”5630,5003″][/vc_column][/vc_row]