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designing and building with wood channels my creativity and challenges my mind.
This blog is a record of my life in my studio.

Thursday, February 3, 2011


I am taking the plunge and painting some furniture.  I had to do it.  I know my "rep" (such as it is) as a furniture maker may suffer as a result, but I was left with no choice. 

Here's the thing:  I have been trying to get a good black finish on my aquarium stands for a few months now.  I also have a few striped table tops that almost surely would look best with black bases.  But no matter what I try, I can't get a good black finish that goes on easily without re-work. 

I started out going the fine furniture route: ebony stain followed by a clear coat of lacquer, varnish, or water borne finish.  After failing completely to get a good dark black with oil-based stains, I fared better using water-borne black stain.  But I still had trouble rubbing out the clear coat without rubbing through the stain and back into raw wood.  Then it hit me: why not paint? 

Well, furniture makers scoff at painting, for one.  It's the least "natural" of all the finish options, and tends to erase any signs of wood grain.  But could black paint give me the smooth black finish I was looking for?  I decided to try it out on a pair of coffee tables I'm making.

I'll follow up when I'm done, and let you know how it goes.

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