How to Prep Wood for Acrylic Paint

Use white paint to prime your piece of wood.
Use white paint to prime your piece of wood. (Image: painting image by Linda Brotkorb from

Use wood the next time you're using acrylic paints for a craft project or for something that can be hung as art. Wood can be a great medium for acrylic paint because it's a smooth and forgivable surface to work with. Acrylic paint can also be forgiving because it's water based, easy to mix and dries quickly. Prepping wood for acrylic paint only requires a few steps and a possible trip to the hardware store.

Things You'll Need

  • White acrylic paint
  • Sandpaper
  • Paintbrush

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Inspect the wood to make sure there isn't any sort of varnish or finish on the wood.

Sand the wood down if there is a varnish. Begin with a lower grit sandpaper (50-100) to get the varnish off. Finish the wood with a higher grit sandpaper (120-150) to smooth it out. If you bought the wood at a craft store, this step won't be necessary because there will be no varnish on it.

Dust off any excess wood particles or dust that may have gotten onto the wood.

Prime the wood with white acrylic paint. This will help the paint stand out more against the white background. It will also create an evenness that the wood won't have without it.

Let the white acrylic paint dry and begin painting.


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