Mahogany veneer wardrobe - is it worth painting?

(11 Posts)
PorridgeAgainAbney Sat 08-Oct-16 16:33:56

Bought a lovely gentlemens wardrobe for our son's bedroom with the idea of painting it (and all the other wooden furniture) the same colour. It's a really lovely simple design and still has all the little labels (bakerlite I guess) on each shelf for "underwear", "pyjamas" and "woollens" etc.

BUT, after looking for advice online, it sounds like it's going to be a really tough job to actually make it look nice - people saying that as it's veneer I need to be really careful sanding it because if I sand it too much then moisture from the paint will lift the veneer and ruin it and that if I don't prime it properly then the paint will just turn pink no matter how many coats I use because of the tannins in mahogany.

My head says I haven't got the time or energy to restore it...my heart won't forgive me if I chuck it out as I love it so much.

Has anyone painted mahogany veneered furniture and not ended up with a candy floss coloured monstrosity? Is it worth it or am I insane for thinking I can do it?

jumpjumpformylove Sat 08-Oct-16 16:36:43

What about using one of the chalk based paints, such as Annie Sloan or Rust-oleum. They don't require sanding or priming beforehand and you should be able to just paint directly onto the veneer.

I love those old wardrobes, you should definitely do what you can to save it!

PorridgeAgainAbney Sat 08-Oct-16 16:48:40

I know - I've had it for a year but still haven't got started because I don't know how to approach it but I'm too attached to give up yet!

I see conflicting advice about the Annie Sloan paints - some people saying that with mahogany the pink tinge still comes through. I haven't heard of the other brand though - I'll check it out. Thanks smile

TeacupDrama Sat 08-Oct-16 17:02:10

unless mahogany veneer is peeling in which case would be difficult anyway; why does it need painting ? why not leave as it is dark wood might not be that fashionable right now but if it's a nice piece as you obviously like it just embrace it for what it is a 1930's wardrobe.

PorridgeAgainAbney Sat 08-Oct-16 17:16:44

The veneer is ok, a couple of scratches but nothing serious.

I want to paint it because we have a chest of drawers and a lovely dresser type unit for toys and books (cupboards underneath with open shelving on top) and all three things are currently different finishes - the other two are plain pine and white paint.

I was given one of the items and the other two were really cheap. I haven't got the money to buy a 'set' of furniture (and don't really like everything to be the same anyway) so wanted to paint all three so that there will be a bit of a 'look' going on even though they are all individual pieces.

NapoleonsNose Sat 08-Oct-16 17:18:31

To stop the mahogany bleeding before chalk painting, give it a coat of shellac first. I learnt this recently when I painted a mahogany bedside cabinet. I've used Rustoleum on several pieces of furniture now to get it all to match and it does give a good result.

PorridgeAgainAbney Sat 08-Oct-16 17:38:06

Thanks - I'll look into the shellac. I did read a bit about it but someone described it as nail varnish for furniture which put me off as my son has asthma so I didn't think it sounded particularly healthy grin

I think my Saturday night will be spend researching paint and shellac, which to be honest is a step up from last Saturday night when I did the monthly finances smile

dontcallmelen Sun 09-Oct-16 23:31:04

Hi you could try using an undercoat then satin or eggshell paint as topcoat, maybe starting somewhere that wont show, if happy with the result carry on.
I found using a satin or eggshell gives a much better finish & no bleeding on dark furniture, unlike the chalk paint which does 'bleed' through unless you seal the wood first with a shellac, which can be a little difficult to work with.

JeffreySadsacIsUnwell Tue 11-Oct-16 00:29:37

You need this stuff...

www.zinsseruk.com/product/bulls-eye-1-2-3-plus/

TattyCat Tue 11-Oct-16 00:47:56

IME mahogany will stain through any paint you apply whether chalk or eggshell and whether or not you sand it first. You can find shellac or a similar 'primer' designed to prevent the bleeding, so use that first then paint with whatever you choose.

I learnt this the hard way!

Legwarmersforboys Wed 12-Oct-16 21:54:49

www.screwfix.com/p/zinsser-b-i-n-shellac-based-primer-sealer-white-1ltr/29661

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now