Finishing techniques for wood

There are so many finishing techniques that you can use for wood, whether you are starting a project with new wood, or giving old wood furniture a revamp. Techniques for finishing wood can range from a high-gloss painted finish to a finish that is more rustic or natural.


First, remove the existing finish with an orbital sander and 120- and then 180-grit sandpaper. Next, apply single coats of different paint colours in random areas, one at a time, allowing drying time for each colour. Lastly, rough up and partially remove the paint with the orbital sander. Finish off with antique wax, or apply a clear or stain varnish to the surface.

Once the proper coats of paint or stain are applied and dry, use muttoncloth to apply lime wax or shoe polish into grain and millwork details. Remove excess wax with steel wool, then seal the limed detail with furniture wax and finishing oil. You can buy liming wax at specialist stores such at Hardware Centre.

Strip paint with an orbital sander and 120- and then 180-grit sandpaper. Make sure the piece is free from dust before taking outdoors and placing on a dropcloth. Apply a light even coat of Rust-Oleum Gloss Enamel or Lacquer spray and leave this to dry. A second light coat can be applied once the first coat is completely dry.

Matt or suede finish is best for pieces with rough texture, since it minimises flaws and imperfections; gloss finishes are best for smooth, sleek pieces. Plascon Sunproof has built-in UV-stabilisers and dry film biocides, making it ideal for outdoor applications, and providing long-lasting service and weather protection. Plascon Sunproof repels water and prevents moisture from penetrating the coating. You can use this product on new and previously painted wood.

Start by sanding down pieces with 180-grit sandpaper. Wipe clean to remove all traces of dust and then take the piece outdoors and place on a dropcloth. Spray on light even coats of Rust-Oleum 2X, allowing drying time between coats. Use Alcolin spray adhesive to attach wallpaper to doors, spraying both the back of the wallpaper and front of the cabinet. Allow the adhesive to dry to touch before placing the wallpaper onto the door front.

Buy Rust-Oleum and Plascon products at your local Builders Warehouse.