Plywood furniture has a distinctive look. While it may fit in well with other lightly colored furniture and decorations, sometimes the contrast with other wood hues is glaring. In these instances, it is often far cheaper to stain the plywood furniture with a store-bought wood stain rather than replace furniture. Learning how to stain plywood furniture is therefore the key to renovating your woods and making them blend in better with their surroundings.
Things You'll Need
- Coarse sandpaper
- Medium sandpaper
- Low-grit sandpaper
- Old cloth or rag
- Wood conditioner
- Mineral spirits
- Wood stain
Sand the entire surface of the furniture with coarse sandpaper to remove any surface marks, paintwork or other debris. Sand the surface again with medium sandpaper to smooth out the surface, making the furniture suitable for staining. Always sand in the direction of the grain, rather than against it, to achieve a smoother surface. Clear away the dust and debris with an old cloth.
Buff the entire surface of the furniture with a cloth. Apply mineral spirits to a rag and buff the surface again. Allow the spirits to dry for a half-hour.
Apply wood conditioner to a sponge. Rub the furniture with the sponge to prepare a suitable base on the wood for staining. Clean the sponge thoroughly.
Dip a paintbrush in a tin of wood stain. Brush off any excess into the wood stain tin, to prevent drips and spills. Brush the stain onto the furniture in short strokes. When brushing, go with the grain rather than against it as this gives a far more natural finish to the wood. Leave to dry for an hour or two before applying a second coat of varnish in the same manner.
Sand the entire surface of the furniture with low-grit sandpaper. When sanding, do not press too hard. The purpose is to provide a lightly keyed surface, without scoring the wood. Apply polyurethane sealant to a sponge. Rub the furniture with the sponge, ensuring as even a coat of sealant as possible. Allow the sealant time to dry. The exact amount of time needed varies, so consult the sealant's instructions for more precise details.
Tips & Warnings
- Apply the stain thinly to ensure the level of staining you desire. It is always possible to add more coats of wood stain later if you decide the wood is too light, but it is far more difficult to remove it if you have applied too much and decide the wood is now too dark.
- Working with mineral spirits, wood stains and sealants can be dangerous. Inhalation of evaporating solvents can cause headaches and respiratory problems. Always wear a mask and gloves when working with these chemicals. Work in a well ventilated area, or outside if at all possible, to minimize the risk of chemical inhalation.
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/BananaStock/Getty Images
About Oak Veneer Plywood
When you veneer, you actually glue a thin sheet or layer of wood to another piece of wood or material. Plywood is...
How to Stain a Plywood Floor
A floor made out of plywood can be very durable, but in order to keep it looking nice, you will need to...
How to Refinish Plywood Veneer Furniture
Plywood veneer furniture is constructed from fiberboard, or bits of wood that have been fused together into a rigid sheet. As a...
How to Paint Birch Plywood
Birch plywood possesses a light yet hard veneer that takes paint well, making it ideal for painted furniture and other applications where...
How to Stain Oak Plywood
Staining oak plywood is a bit different from staining other kinds of wood, and very often people find that they have difficulties...
Refinishing Plywood Cabinets
Plywood is a laminate composed of thin layers of natural wood. The panels are manufactured for use in a variety of home...
How to Stain Birch Plywood
Birch is often used for building furniture and other fine woodworking projects. Birch plywood is strong with a fine and uniform wood...
How to Remove a Plywood Subfloor
All or part of your house may have plywood subfloors that are susceptible to damage. Rain may have reached the plywood or...
How to Stain and Finish Plywood
Plywood is an amazingly versatile building material. Because it is made of thin strips of wood glued together with adhesive, it is...
How to Apply Stain to Wood
Use a quick and even motion to apply wood stain. Learn the right way to coat your wood project with wood stain...