DIY Thrifty Finds

Satin Nickel Vanity Refinish

January 28, 2015

My dad recently moved out of his home to downside to a condo downtown. He offered me a few pieces of (outdated) furniture, so of course I took them. However, wasn’t thrilled with the 90’s oak look of this piece. I decided to do a metallic classy & girly new look for it.

Here’s how I did it:

I started by sanding the piece down with a medium grit sandpaper. Just a light sanding to get the primer to stick, nothing too major. After that of course washing it down with just water & a cloth or a light soapy water is perfect. Once it is dry you’re ready to prime.

Here is what I used:


I used this oil based zinsser because it was what I had laying around. I used a small roller for the bigger sections and a brush for the more detailed parts. You could use a water based too- just remember the rule- Water over oil= fine, oil over water=no good!

I taped off everything I didn’t want painted and rolled on the primer.


Now, I let this sit for a couple days to make sure the primer fully cured before spray painting. Also the weather wasn’t great and you want to make sure it is warm enough before spray painting (or really any painting- READ THE LABELS ON THE PAINT – generally it should be about 40 -50 degrees and dry outside if you are working outdoors.)

Ready to spray paint! I’ve read all kinds of tips on spray paint, but can never seem to get it perfect without seeing some shiny sections & some not so shiny (looks splotchy.) The biggest thing I can tell you is not to try to get full coverage the first round. Take even stroked back & forth and let it dry in between coats. The color I used was satin nickel in Rustoleum spray paint- details here. I bought it at home depot. I also used a clear coat gloss to help with the splotchiness- Rustoleum clear gloss in a can- see here, also from home depot. I could have used a poly or something of the sort but I like this stuff because it doesn’t leave a yellow tint.

Last, I needed new knobs/handles. I found some cute plastic clear knobs for the top drawers in teh cabinet hardware section of home depot for the top drawers, and I decided to keep the other handles but just spray them white. They were cute & ornate but I was just not a fan of the bronze with the spray paint color I chose.


And after waiting for everything to fully dry & attaching the new handles, it looks great! **Note- I did get a little excess spray paint on the mirrors, but all you need is a razor blade and it is not an issue to scrape off.

Here it is! My own little primping station. Would also be so cute for a little girl’s room.


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