So happy to finally be done with refinishing my front door. It is solid wood so I had to strip and sand and sand and sand and .... well you get the idea. Then I had to stain over two days and then add a coat of spar urethane over the course of another two days. Here is the result..... I love it!
Here are the dreadful BEORE pictures! Several harsh Chicago winters totally took its toll on the door. I was going to paint it black because I was not sure I would be able to get it from a honey oak to a dark mahogany. The project was a little daunting but I figured I would give it a shot and if I ruined the door, I could THEN paint it. So glad I took a chance.
The first step was to use a chemical stripper and then re-strip and then sand, sand, sand and sand some more. The stripper is nasty - had to wear chemical resistant gloves, a mask, eye protection and I still got a few chemical burns. OUCH! What a totally tedious job but I finally got it down to bare wood. Behold the totally naked wood door - a glorious sight!
The next step was Wood Conditioner. It is the equivalent of using foundation under your make-up. It helps to even out the wood and allow for a more uniform stain color. Here is the door after the conditioner was applied.
After that was allowed to dry, I applied the first coat of stain. Varathane Gel Stain - CABERNET. It worked very well. After the first coat, I was a little nervous that I would never get the dark color I had my heart set on.
After the application of a few more coats, I definitely had arrived at the color I had pictured in my mind. I then added four coats of Spar arathane so it will hopefully be a long time until I have to do this project again. I also removed the railing which made a HUGE difference! I am thrilled! This project cost me about $50 total for stains and supplies.
Here are the supplies I used...
I used a basic stripper from Menards. Then after it was stripped and sanded, I used this - one of my favorite products! Citristrip Paint Stripper After Wash! I used white gauze to apply it. It just washes off the residue from stripping and sanding and gives you a clean surface to work with. The door felt so nice after I finished this step. I used the white gauze so I can see how much residue I am removing - once the gauze stays relatively clean, I know I'm done with this step.
Next was the wood conditioner. Its like using foundation on your face before make-up. It just prepares the new, raw wood for staining and allows it to go on smoother. I love it.
This Varathane stain made all the difference. Everyone told me I couldn't make an oak door look like a deep mahogany but this totally did the trick. The final coats went a bit thicker to enhance the color and I LOVE the result!
Living in Chicago - the final step was a definite MUST! I added a few coats of the spar urethane. It creates a strong clear coat to prevent chipping and peeling. With the harsh winters, this was a must.
Thank you so much for stopping by and taking a look at my front door make-over!
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