A solid oak bed is a beautiful piece of furniture designed for lasting, durable performance, and easy integration into a wide variety of aesthetic approaches. Refinishing solid oak furniture gives even older furniture a fresher, richer look that elevates its appearance and diminishes the appearance of scuffs, scratches, and other blemishes. Wood finish options available provide the opportunity to mimic the look of other woods or give the solid oak bed frame a deeper colour to complement a decorative style.
Prepare the Workspace
Refinishing solid oak bedroom furniture is a messy project best handled in a large, well-ventilated area, such as a workshop. To prepare the workspace, place a dust sheet under the bed frame to protect the floor. For easy access and movement around the entire frame, place it on a work table or support.
Remove Old Finish
Removing old finish from the bed frame reveals the wood and prepares it to receive the new finish. Apply a coat of wood stripper or varnish remover. This chemical is available in either gel or liquid versions. Allow the remover to sit for several hours or overnight, which causes the varnish to dry and loosen from the wood. Use a putty knife to scrape the loosened varnish off the frame and remove the remaining residue with a sponge and white spirit. To check for residue, wipe the surface with a dry white cloth. When clean, the cloth should not show any discolouration.
Sand the Bed Frame
Remove any rough spots in the wood and create a smooth surface for finishing using sandpaper. With individual sheets or a sanding block, follow the grain to ensure an even finish and thorough removal of any defects in the wood. Pay extra attention to curves, edges, and decorative carvings. The quality of the refinishing relies on effective, thorough sanding.
Apply Grain Filler
Oak is an open-grain wood, giving it the tendency to absorb finishes and varnishes unevenly and creating a somewhat rough surface even when sanded. Apply grain filler paste and use a scraper blade to press it firmly into the grain. Allow the filler to dry completely before using a fine grain sandpaper to remove the excess paste and create a fully prepared surface. Use a wood primer to prevent the wood from absorbing too much varnish and allow it to dry completely.
Finish and Seal the Frame
Apply the wood varnish with a soft-bristled paintbrush. Follow the grain for a natural, attractive look. Choose a wood stain that suits your tastes. Allow the stain to penetrate the wood until it achieves the desired colour. Finish the frame with a clear wood sealer for a protected shine.