Before I came into the picture, my husband bought some patio furniture that is the perfect scale for our small backyard patio. Here’s what it looked like when he bought it from World Market.
Fast forward three years and the finish was extremely weathered.
While I was busy working at the Austin Ice Cream Festival on Saturday, my husband and stepdad sanded down the furniture. The difference was so dramatic, we briefly considered sealing it without staining it. It looked so fresh.
Here are my husbands basic sanding tips:
- If you can take apart of the furniture fairly easily, do it. We probably should have.
- A power sander is a must.
- Various sanding grit levels is helpful. We used 0220 for the most part, but used a much rougher one for the hard to reach areas where we couldn’t apply much pressure. If you use a rougher paper then you have to go back and use a lower grit afterward to smooth it out.
- Use tack cloth to remove any remaining sawdust before staining.
I wanted a dark stain, so I picked up a can of Rustoleum’s Black Cherry Wood Stain from Lowes. On Sunday, my husband and stepdad stained one of the chairs. I predict it will be about 3 weeks before Anthony and I will find time to stain the bench, table, and remaining chair, but look how well it turned out:
A few tips for staining:
- Be sure to wear rubber gloves.
- Test out the stain by applying it to a small area on the back or underside of the wood first. Leave it on 1 minute and gently wipe it off with a cloth, then in another small area, leave it on 2 minutes and wipe, then 3 minutes to see which shade of stain you prefer. A cut up old t-shirt works perfectly works perfectly as a wiping cloth.
- Make sure to watch for areas where the stain drips or runs down to another area. Wipe that off as soon as possible.
- If you want a glossy finish, spray the stained furniture with polyurethane. Otherwise, seal it with a water sealer. If you choose to use a water sealer, you can brush on a thin coat each year to prevent weathering.
Now that our patio furniture is refreshed, I’m keeping my eyes open for cute outdoor pillows, a potted plant or two, and an inexpensive rug. Maybe black and white stripes?
After getting out there myself to finish staining the patio furniture, I’ve got a few tips of my own:
- Check the weather!
After spending several hours finishing the furniture on a hot, sunny, Austin day, the evening brought heavy rainfall and wind. The storm was so strong that our power went out. How did I not see that one coming, at all? Thankfully, it seems the stain was set enough and no damage was done.
- I also found that a natural bristle paint brush (like the goat hair ones I bought at a craft store rather than the home improvement store) prevents drips better than other brushes. So much so that I skipped the wiping step altogether.
The final product?
I’m still in want of some accessories, but boy, do I love the transformation! I think the dark stain against the white stone looks great.