Painting wood furniture: A DIY guide to get the perfect finish

Close up of detailed wood furniture being painted teal with a paintbrush
Painting wooden furniture can give an item a new lease of life in your home (Image credit: Getty Images)

Need to refresh your favourite furniture? Painting wood furniture can turn old tatty items into fresh, smart, contemporary objects of desire. A new coat of paint can transform a rarely used sideboard into a focal point, a chair into a functional thing of beauty and give a bookshelf a new lease of life.  

But you need to make sure that you are doing it right. Like most painting wood projects, preparation and paint are the key. Poor preparation and the wrong paint will soon see your newly painted furniture peel and chip and need a new coat of paint. Find out what you need to know to stop this happening. 

Painting wood furniture

Steve Jenkins

Steve Jenkins is a freelance content creator with over two decades of experience working in digital and print and was previously the DIY content editor for Homebuilding & Renovating. 

He is a keen DIYer with over 20 years of experience in transforming and renovating the many homes he has lived in. He specialises in painting and decorating, but has a wide range of skills gleaned from working in the building trade for around 10 years and spending time at night school learning how to plaster and plumb.

He has fitted kitchens, tiled bathrooms and kitchens, laid many floors, built partition walls, plastered walls, plumbed in bathrooms, worked on loft conversions and much more. And when he's not sure how to tackle a DIY project he has a wide network of friends – including plumbers, gas engineers, tilers, carpenters, painters and decorators, electricians and builders – in the trade to call upon.