Wednesday, November 21, 2012

How to Refinish Laminate Furniture. No sanding!

Over the summer I found this cabinet at Goodwill for $19 and saw its potential. It was an old 70's style TV stand (when TV's were square. Ha!), and thought with a fun make-over it could become best friends with my recently revamped dining table. I am one of those people who love a good "Before and After." I find it kind of addicting. There is something in the result that is so satisfying! Even more gratifying, no sanding! I have refinished several pieces of furniture, and anything that takes out a step(especially one of the hardest) is always a welcome treat!

With an additional $20 in paint and primer, I happily transformed the old retro cabinet into a fun colorful piece of furniture. I confess I am a chevron nut! Hence the design I chose for the backing. But it turned out to be quite a simple project. Because it was made of fiberboard and laminate coating, I did have a small fear it would drive me to swearing, muttering to myself, and eventual insanity. Ha! But to my pleasant surprise, Pinterest offered me a solution. I think its safe to say it was a success! My results below:
























The original Pin(over 500 pins!) and my inspiration:

http://thepeartreecottage.blogspot.com/2011/07/painting-particle-board-laminate.html?m=1

Here's how I did it:

Step 1:
Remove all hardware, shelves, doors, and hinges.

Step 2:
Wipe down all the pieces you intend to paint so they are nice and clean. (I had to fill in the cable hole as well.)

Step 3:
Prime every area you intend to paint. This step doesn't have to be perfect or pretty. It just needs a good coating or two of the primer. I painted several coats on the backing as I intended part of the white to be seen in the design. Then let it all dry completely.


Step 4:
Paint! I only had to use 2 coats.

Step 5:
When it was completely dry, I taped my design onto the back using Blue Painters tape and a measuring tape. I spaced the stripes out 1 and 1/2 inches apart and used a leveler to make sure I was keeping them at the right angle. Was really easy! Then I used some left over paint from my dining table project and filled in the taped lines.

After a few hours I pulled the tape off and Ta Da! Chevron stripes and a completed project!


Products I used:

1) Zinsser brand 123 Primer for All Surfaces in White from Walmart.(This is water based with no odor and went on so smooth.)
2) Colorplace Interior Semi-Gloss paint in Pistachio Ice Cream from Walmart. This also rolled on smooth.
3) Minwax Brand Polycrylic clear top coat. I love this top coat because it is water-based and doesn't smell and when it dries is a great protection. It also dries crystal clear unlike some of the others that have a yellowish tint. I have used this on several projects and already had this on hand. It is sold at Lowes.
4) Ultra smooth mini roller
5) Blue Painter's Tape
6) Measuring tape
7) Leveler

Hope this helps someone out with their next project! I found this easy, and if I dare say it, enjoyable!


If you liked this, you may also like How to Refinish a Dining Table, No Sanding! Here:
http://pinterestandthepauper.blogspot.com/2013/01/how-to-refinish-table-no-sanding.html



81 comments:

  1. Omg! Finally no sanding! That has turned me off to repurposing. Thanks for posting this!

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  2. You're welcome KraftinMommy! Anything to save time and elbow grease! Sanding is such a pain and it takes forever. If we can skip it and still have great results, then its worth sharing! :)Hope it helps ya out!

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  3. Thank you!!! I just got a kitchen cart for free and I was dreading sanding and refinishing. You have changed my attitude!!! ;-)

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  4. Starr, You are welcome! You got a kitchen cart for free? That's awesome! More room in the budget for some fun paint or stenciling. No sanding means more time for doing something fun! And of course no sore muscles. :)

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  5. This looks GREAT! I have always wanted to do something like this but never known where to start. Sounds easy enough though, I think I need to take a trip to my local thrift stores! I found your blog via pinterest, looking forward to seeing what else you make!

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  6. Thanks for stopping by my blog, la petite lulu! I just started it and have so many ideas to try! Hope you enjoy! And yes, visit the thrift stores and garage sales every now and then. You can find great items for pennies on the dollar for your projects!

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  7. It's wonderful! I like the new design of your cabinet. I'm glad no sanding for this tutorial.- www.colonialrestorationstudio.com

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  8. Thank you Jessica! It was fun to redo! And very easy! Anyone can use this and turn a piece of furniture from boring to fun! Enjoy!

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  9. Do you have any trouble with the paint peeling or scratching off? I experimented with a little primer on laminate once and it scratched off. Yours looks great!

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  10. notellynotrouble, I have not had problems with chipping, scratching or peeling with this project. I did with my very first project which was a table a while back, but it was because of the type of paint I used(spray paint) and it was my first time. With this project I used a decent coat or 2 of the primer(white and water based), and the paint on top of it is the type of paint you'd paint a wall in your house with(semigloss and I think latex based). Its very durable. Then a clear top coat to seal it. I have an 18 month old boy who we call our Destroyer. He bangs, scrapes, smashes, and rolls his toys all over it! It has held up perfectly so far. I would do another project this way any time. Hope that answers your question! Let me know how it works for you!

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  11. This looks so good! Now I want to go treasure-hunting at Goodwill for a project :) Great job on the chevron stripes too!

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  12. Thanks Amanda! Local thrift stores are great places to find a good piece of furniture to make over! Goodwill is my favorite because its just down the street. And I am a total chevron nut! hehe. Thanks for stopping by!

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  13. Great project! You mention you also revamped a dining table and I got the impression this cabinet now matches it - I'd love to see pics!

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  14. Jo Jo, I did do my table as well. I do plan on posting that tutorial in the not so far off future. :) So glad you want to see it! Stay tuned! :)

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  15. Yay! I am going to do my daughter's dresser in hot pink. It will have to wait until spring, though. I have to do it in my garage....and it is 8 below today. :) Thanks for the fabulous tips! I am soooo excited!!!

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  16. @ The Bennett Bunch... It is too cold for furniture projects here too! Wait til you get over 50 degrees again. Paint doesn't cure when its 8 below!!! hehe. I'd love to see the photos of the dresser when you do it. That sounds so fun!

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  17. I just purchased a cute desk with hutch at Salvation Army for $34 and need to paint it. I came upon this post and am excited to give it a try. However, you said that "with an additional $20 in paint and primer"...where did you get the paint AND primer for only $20? I looked at Walmart and they are $20 EACH, then you add the topcoat, and I'm looking at a total of about $60! I'm on a very limited budget and $20 sounds so doable....$60, not as much....

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  18. alittlebitofmonicainyourlife, I did only spent $20 on a can of primer and can of paint. I used the Zinsser 123 Primer for all surfaces in White from Walmart. It is approx $8 and change for a quart, and I used a quart of Walmart's ColorPlace brand paint Interior semi-gloss in Pistachio Ice Cream. It is also about $8 and change. With a project like a desk or like my cabinet, you will not need an entire gallon. I still have half a quart of both the primer and paint left. I can use it on another project! Woot! I found the primer in the paint section of course, but not by all the fancy stuff by the spray paints. Look on the isle with the interior or exterior paints latex paints. That's where I found the primer on the very end of the isle. As for the paint, you just select a color and ask for a quart using the ColorPlace brand. Should not cost more than $20! Also, places like Lowes and Home Depot can actually tint their primers like paint so it would be all in one if you can't find the items at Walmart. Those are about $16. I hope this helps! Good luck with your project! (I can email photos of the paints I used if you'd like...)

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  19. I was wondering Amanda, would this work on kitchen cabinets as well? They are not solid wood, I have a double wide and they have some kind of laminate cover, I've been wanting to do something with them for a long time. Thanks

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  20. Susie, this would indeed work on cabinets! The key is to prime well. Use several coats evenly and let them dry sufficiently in between. Patience is a virtue! hehe. I also find that using a latex type of paint in semi-gloss or eggshell finish is much more durable. This type of paint is generally used on walls and is super hardy! It's built to take a punch. And of course top coat. Voila! New cabinets in a jiffy! My sister in law also has a blog and she stained her bathroom cabinets. Its a little different than painting but you can visit her site here if you'd like to take a look...http://www.diymamas.blogspot.ca/2012/10/staining-easy-way-with-professional.html

    Thanks for stopping by Susie! Let me know if you have any other questions!

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  21. Thank you Amanda for the info and your sister in law's site, I'll check it out as well, now I just have to get brave and give it a try!!

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  22. omg like everyone else i am sooo sooo happy i found this! I freakin HATE sanding..ugh...I have this ugly kitchen table and chairs we got second hand..i've always hated it..not a fan of oak 80's type kitchen tables..my color theme in my kitchen is yellow with red & white accents. Soooo i saw your pin about your redo of the kitchen table and chairs..LOVED your idea with the chalkboard top..i was going to go with black table and red chairs with the distressed look. But i live in canada and its like -50 at the moment and would like to have a winter project so using the spray paint..doesnt work at the moment. So im wondering if this method would work on a kitchen table and chairs? thanks so much for your brilliant mind !

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  23. Falon, so glad you found me! Your table sounds like a fun project. Red is my favorite color! I live in Washington and while its not sub-zero, its not weather one can paint in yet, so I know how you feel. As you saw, I did my table with the spray primer, but a table can totally be done with the method I used for this cabinet. It's just going to take more time. Each piece needs to be primed and then painted and top coated. No sanding though! My only extra tip would be to use nice brushes. It will make all the difference! And using a latex type paint, your color options are much larger. I would love to see a photo when you're done!

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  24. Amanda you have motivated me to transform the most hideously ugly desk/workstation I brought home from work after we were told to take one or the dumpster would. It's so terrible I do believe I'm the only sucker who saw hope in it. We had around 40 of them! A terrible waste but I digress.... I am going to attempt to post before and afters as you did and I will post a link here for you! I have been procrastinating due to my aversion to sanding and now I've lost my excuse. Thank you! Yours is stunning. Kelly

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  25. Kelly Anne, I am so glad you found this helpful! I SO want to see your finished desk. Send me a pic when you're done. I love seeing tranformations. Its a kind of addiction. Ha! Let me know if you have questions as you go!

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  26. I have a similar cabinet that desperately needs a make over, too. I was worried about it scratching and peeling too, but I see you used a clear top coat. Brilliant :) Does it brush or roll on like paint?

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  27. Laura, if you use a primer, a latex paint, and a top coat you should have no problems with chipping, scratching, or peeling. Its hardy stuff! My son is 2 years old and loves to bang and roll is toys on it. So far, not a dent! And the top coat can be rolled or brushed, but I think a brush is best. Coats better. I'd love to see it when your finished!

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  28. Love it! I like the combination of the light green and grey chevron design. Thanks for the tips on painting laminate, I might give it a try!

    Tania

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  29. Thanks for stopping by to check it out Tania!

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  30. How much is the top coat? I can't find a price online! I'm looking into trying this this weekend! Thanks!

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  31. Emily, the top coat is about $8-9 for a pint at Walmart. It was the perfect amount for my cabinet. You can get a whole quart for about $16 if its a really large project like a table and chairs with a lot of surface. A little goes a long way!

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  32. I think I have this exact cabinet in my garage. It also has a hole in the back for cords. How did you patch that hole?

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  33. Trisha, it did have a hole that I patched. I cut a circle out of a heavy cardstock paper, just slightly larger than the hole, and glued it over. Then painted as normal. You can't see it was ever there! Its crazy what a bit of paint can do for an old piece of furniture. :)

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  34. This is a great idea. Don't forget about decoupage either. If you don't want to put a chalk board or paint a checker board on the table you can always paint it the color you like, then cover the top and/or side of the table with a coordinating fabric or photos. Once the top coat is on, it will all be protected. I can just see an adorable little lace covered table or shabby chic fabric covered table topping a vintage color.

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  35. I like to use auto body filler (Bondo) for holes, left by hardware, dings, etc. It dries almost immediately and I can use my dremmel to match the design to the rest of the item, like around the edge of it. My favorite hardware place for new wheels (I put almost EVERYTHING on wheels to make it easier to clean.)or any kind of knobs, fobs or hinges is Van Dyke Restorers. http://www.vandykes.com
    Love working on these projects.

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  36. Lynette, I used decoupage to help patch the back. Worked wonders! And the auto body filler is a GREAT idea! I never thought about lace or fabric. That would be an awesome next project! Thanks for the ideas and for stopping by!

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  37. Thanks for the information, need to resurface my L-shaped computer desktop. We can't afford to replace this huge desk and it's top is an eyesore. Do you think acrylic paints could be used after the primer dries?

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  38. News4Kasey, you should be able to use any type of paint on top of the primer. I think your choice of paint depends on how large the area you want to cover. If you do use acrylics, I highly recommend a top coat to seal it!

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  39. So excited to find this! I just bought an adorable mid-century modern nightstand for $40 on Craigslist and want to paint it grey and white to match my living room. It's wood, I think, with a formica top, all ugly brown. Will this technique work on it? I'm a total newbie on projects like this, so I really have no idea where to start. You make it sound easy, so I like that!

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  40. Christina, yes, this would work perfectly! It isn't hard at all. Would love to see photos of your project when you done. Feel free to ask questions as you go! Thanks for stopping by!

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  41. Would I be able to do this project indoors with the windows open and a fan? I'm in an apartment.... Not alot of outdoor area to do this kind of project!

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  42. The cabinet is really good it looks similar to a bathroom cabinet I have seen in London. It is really compact and useful.

    http://www.paramountbathrooms.co.uk/acatalog/bathroom_suite.html

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  43. Brendan, you can totally do this indoors as long as you aren't using spray paint. I did this project indoors myself, but I used the type of paints you roll or brush on. See the post for the paints I used. Hope this helps!

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  44. My first post on your blog and really it is just to say thanks for your Nice Post And Shairing
    You always pick such interesting i visit your blog regularly for updates!
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  45. obaid301, thanks for stopping by!

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  46. Do you have a photo of this piece in use? I'm wondering how you're using the large upper area with no shelves? Looks great.....thanks for sharing!

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  47. I have a chalk board menu and some apothecary jars in the top half and the bottom shelves have baskets. I haven't taken a photo of it yet(didn't even think about it actually!), but that's a good idea for a follow up post! Thanks for stopping by Paula!

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  48. Really amazing. I really appreciate your idea. Thanks for sharing. Hospitality furniture

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  49. Thanks. I always enjoy reading your posts - they are always humorous and intelligent.I am a china tour lover,You can learn more: China travel service | China Travel Agency | Customized China Tours

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  50. Hi, did you only use one coat of the polycrylic. I'm painting a project now and i am not sure if I have to do 2 coats and sand in between the coats. I don't want to sand because i'm afraid the scratch marks will be seen after applying the polycrylic.

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  51. P Chant, I used 2 to 3 coats of the polycrylic, but there is no need to sand in between. Just do one coat at a time and let fully dry. Then its good to go! Hope that helps!

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  53. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  54. I am about to take on painting a laminate bookcase. I am pregnant and live in an apartment so I was really hoping I could still do this if the products are water-based and odorless. I read elsewhere that using a water-based primer (and not oil-based) means both needing to sand before and having to wait up to a week to dry. It doesn't sound like you needed to do either and the end result was great... is that right?

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  55. Monica, I used all water-based products. I had absolutely no problems. I painted mine indoors in a large room with a door open. It was January in Washington state! Brrrrr! It didn't take any extra time to dry. If there are any fumes, maybe think about wearing a mask since you are prego, but other than that, it should be just fine. :) And congratulations on the baby!

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  56. Great! Thanks so much for your response and for your well wishes! :)

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  57. Thanks you for this write, i m enjoyed thanks you, masko

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  58. Wow, you did a great job-I love every single detail. Well done! Princess Carriage Beds

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  59. Beautiful job on the shelf! Zinsser Bullseye 123 is practically a miracle product, in my opinion!! I LOVE that stuff!! I've yet to run into an "unpaintable" surface that Bullseye wouldn't work on. At our last house, there was paneling through a lot of the house when we got it -- very glossy paneling! No way could we go through sanding all that stuff!! We used 2 coats of Bullseye throughout & then painted like normal. It worked perfectly, never any peeling, chipping, etc. in the 8 years we lived there. I've recently redone some countertops, painting them in a faux granite manner, again using Bullseye as a primer - no sanding. I DID let the Bullseye cure for a full week before putting my final paint job on the counter. Topped it off with polycrylic & it's held up under heavy use with no chips, flaking, peeling, etc. Bullseye 123 is the BEST primer in the world!

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  60. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  61. FerretLady, Thanks for stopping by! I totally agree that Bullseye 123 is one of the best primers and makes a project so much easier! So glad someone else out there has found this miracle in a can! :)

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  62. Do you think acrylic paint will be good to use over the primer?

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  63. Now a days people will love to cover all the wooden stuff in any kind of leather sheet or velvet stuff. trend of pure wooden stuff is bit low now a days.
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  64. Amanda, you can use any type of paint over the primer you want. Just make sure you let it dry between coats as it directs. That way it won't chip or peel. And make sure to use a clear top coat! That seals the deal. :)

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  65. This looks so good, I like the new design of your cabinet.Internet based furniture company

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  66. I really wish I would have found this post before my major furniture fail this weekend...but at least I know where I went wrong. :) Thanks for the info.

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  67. Bree, every project is a learning experience! Hope everything worked out!

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  69. I have never thought that it's possible to paint [url=http://www.domavita.lt/laminuotos-grindys.html]laminate[/url] furniture. You actually made a new cabinet, what huge difference is possible with a little of imagination and work.

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  70. Great idea post, I always wanted stylish furniture. But mostly the designs become too common in the market. It is good to know that many online furniture stores in Australia are looking for a change.
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  71. I've been using oil based paint for my color...it generally doesn't need a top coat because it sticks so well. I'm not a fan of high gloss and the satin oil base seems to do the trick. Have you tried these and still prefer the latex brands with a top coat? And can you use the primer on oil based?

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  72. Im so frustrated! I primed, painted and sealed a lamintate bed frame and it peels off with a gentle scratch of my nail, What did I do wrong??

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  73. bloghead.blogspot.com....Oil based paints are great! Its true that they stick well and you don't generally need primer, but for those that are perhaps not as experienced may find oil based paint a bit frustrating on a first time project. Its "sticky" and a mistake is a bit harder to fix etc. I recommend the latex brands for first timers or simple projects. Dries faster, goes on smoother, etc. But oil base paint is one of those things that when done right, is excellent! Stains too. :)

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  74. Jamie, how many coats of primer did you use? And how many coats of paint? What brands were they? Was it spray paint or latex paint? What did you use to seal it? It shouldn't just come off with light contact, so I agree that's odd and would make me swear under my breath! :) Lets get to the bottom of it! Let me know...

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  75. I absolutely love what you have done with your project...wonderfully inspiring. So inspiring in fact, that I am taking on redoing my whole laminate bedroom set that I've had since I was twelve (now 26). I got the zinsser 123 water based latex primer, but I was wondering, how long did you wait for the primer to dry, before applying your coats of paint? The can says 1 hr., but I've heard people say 24 hrs to one week. Since you have done a similar project with such successful results (i.e. no scratching, peeling, or chipping), I was hoping you could help me out. Please and thank you!!!!

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  76. jacobandnicole n, My sister redid her entire bedroom set that we had since we were born! She made it an antique white. Was so fun! The can of primer says 1 hour and that's all I did, BUT the paint will need to cure on top of it for longer before you actually put it to use. That will depend on the type of paint you use. My general rule is 24 to 48 hours after you do you last coat before you move it back into the house or bedroom. You don't want to start using your dresser or night stand and have it immediately get scratched! Hope this helps!

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