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How to Refinish a Pine Armoire

Thanks everyone for all the love when it came to my refinished pine armoire.

 The method I followed seemed a bit unorthodox (at least to me!), so thought I'd share some of the details here with you today!

First things first, Mr. DD (who graciously volunteered - ha!) gave the armoire a good sanding. He used an electric sander to ensure all the original varnish was removed. I wasn't planning on priming the armoire (because I didn't want an opaque finish), so sanding first was essential. 

After sanding, I cleaned the armoire and taped off the lattice on the front. Then I mixed the Old Fashioned Milk Paint,  in Barn Red, according to the package directions. The shelf life on this paint is pretty short ( 2 days or so) so I waited until I had enough time to tackle the whole project. 

I opted for only one coat of Milk Paint, again because I didn't want a fully saturated color in the end. This paint dries super fast, and was ready for sanding/distressing within 2 hours!

After another cleaning, I applied one coat of Miniwax Dark Walnut stain and let it dry overnight. Here you can see that the left side of the armoire has been stained, whereas the right side has only been distressed. Quite the difference.

At this point, we decided that it needed a bit more distressing to allow all three tones to shine through.  
People say that Milk Paint is a bit unpredictable and I have to agree. The same sandpaper, pressure, and number of strokes were used on each side and you can really see the difference!

Finally, she received two coats on gloss poly. Here you can see that the right side has been poly-ed and the left hasn't. I'm really digging the gloss finish, which is a bit of a relief, seeing as I really struggled with that decision!

The next step was updating the hardware. The existing hinges were literally nailed in place. I didn't want to risk removing them, so I decided to hit them with a little Rub n' Buff in Antique Gold. 
I love the results! 

I purchased new hardware for the door and drawer pulls. I decided on a black pull with a brass accent, thinking they would tie in well with the hinges. But once they were on, I realized they also needed a coat of Rub n' Buff in antique gold. 
Much better!

Here she is again before - in all her rustic pine glory!

And now, with her tobacco leathered finish.

Which one do you prefer?

I think you know how I feel!

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Until next time, 
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