DIY Spray Painted Console Table: How to Update Furniture with Spray Paint

DIY Spray Painted Console TableA little paint and elbow grease is an inexpensive way to change something that doesn’t fit with the decor of your home and seems dated into something that looks like it was MADE for your house.

Last week I posted on how to strip polyurethane coating off of a console table. The poly coat was THICK, but came off fairly easily, and the table was stripped, sanded, cleaned and was ready for paint.

Since I made an effort to strip this table and make it smooth for paint, I chose to use spray paint, so it will have a smooth, look. free of brush strokes. This post describes the steps taken to paint the console table.

The spray paint was $3.50 per can, and I used 3. New hardware was $10 for the three drawers.

1. Preparation

Furniture Stripping and Preparation to Paint

Table, stripped, ready for paint

Strip the table and prepare to paint. For tips, refer to DIY Painted Console Table: How to Strip Furniture and Prep for Paint

Ensure the table is clean and free of any dust, or loose particles

Locate a well-ventilated space, free of wind (so your spray paint isn’t carried away by the wind instead of falling on your furniture)

Always use a mask when working with spray paint

2. Real the Paint Label

2x Coverage Spray Paint in Satin Granite

2x Coverage Spray Paint in Satin Granite

I know this seems like a silly step, but reading the label is a MUST

All spray paints are NOT created equal. Even if you’ve done this before, you need to know the specifics of the paint you will use

For example, my paint should be applied when temperatures are below 90F and humidity is below 65%.

Additional coats should be applied within 1 hour, or after 48 hours.

Paint is dry to touch after 1 hour.

3. Test the Paint

Test the Spray Paint

Test the Spray Paint

Shake the can. Not just a little. A LOT. The can says to shake for one minute. That is a MINIMUM.

Noisy? Yes. But ensures the paint will work at its best

Test your spray paint to make sure the sprayer works as expected, and that the color is right

I used Rust-Oleum Ultra Cover 2x Satin Spray paint, in Satin Granite. It contains both paint and primer. I chose a satin finish because I didn’t want it to be too shiny, but want to be able to wipe it off if needed (small children).

I did my test spray on the bottom of one of the drawers. Once satisfied it sprayed well and I liked the color, I was ready to paint!

4. Apply Paint to Legs, Drawers and Smaller Surfaces

Apply the first coat with even strokes

Table after the first coat

Second Coat

Second Coat

Touch up any areas that aren't coated once turning upright

Touch up any areas that aren’t coated once turning upright

Turn the table upside down on a tarp or other protective surface (You may want to use a towel or something to pad and keep it from scratching)

If time has passed from the test spray, shake the can again, for at least one MINUTE

To spray paint:

  • Hold the can upright 10-16 inches from the surface, and spray using horizontal strokes
  • Start spraying before the furniture
  • Continue spraying and pass at a steady speed over the furniture
  • Continue spraying until just past the furniture and release
  • Shake the can, and repeat, slightly overlapping the previous pass of paint, until the surface is coated

After two coats, allow to dry before turning the furniture upright

Once upright, touch-up any areas that are not painted due to the angle of spray

If you don’t go PAST the surface, pools of paint will form. I learned this the hard way, with pools where I changed directions OVER the table (see photo of 1st coat). I had to do 2 more coats after 48 hours to even things out. Doing it the right way up front will likely reduce the number of coats required.

My table has curved legs and feet, which made it easier to apply paint with the table upside down. You could do it upright if desired. Turning it upside down also protected the top while I painted the rest.  After the legs had dried (1 hour after last coat), the table was turned over and wiped down before continuing.

5. Apply Paint to Top

On a large, smooth surface, the importance of spraying before and past your surface is magnified. Follow the steps in the image below:

How to apply spray paint

How to apply spray paint

Table top after 1 coat of paint

Table top after first coat of paint

Remember to shake the paint can for a minute before beginning and often between sprays

RESIST the urge to do one thick coat. If you spray it too thick, the paint will bubble and you’ll have to sand it down and begin again

If applying more than 2 coats, wait at least 48 hours (Or if you make an error and need to add two more layers like I did)

Fully painted, 4 coat os paint, before hardware

Fully painted, 4 coats of paint, before hardware

Repeat steps to reapply paint as needed

You can see in this First Coat image how I ended up with pools of paint because I tried to paint half of the top of the table at a time. Don’t do that! Lesson learned. I ended up letting the table dry for 48 hours before painting as described above. Address the whole surface at once (if possible).

I used 4 coats of paint on the legs and table top by the time I was satisfied with the paint on my table.

6. Fully Dry and Reassemble

Finished Table with Hardware

Finished Table with Hardware

Verify that paint is no longer tacky before reassembling

Reassemble the furniture

Use a screw driver to affix drawer pulls or hardware

Due to humidity, the paint was tacky 48 hours after the final coat.  I waited 72 hours before re-assembling.

I ordered black drawer pulls that fit the holes that were already drilled (2.5 inch spread).

7. Determine if Ready to Clear Coat

I am still considering distressing the table, so will not apply clear coat quite yet

Once I decide, I’ll either post an update about the clear coat, or the distressing process

Overall, we like the color we chose and find the satin finish to have just a little shine, but not too much. After 4 coats of paint, the color is even, solid and the table looks clean and updated. It goes well with our house and looks nice in our entry way.

Since I’ve learned a few lessons, I am now ready to tackle the bar stools in my kitchen, hopefully with fewer coats of paint.

Before and After

DIY Painted Console Table: How to Update Furniture with Spray Paint

Happy Painting!

nifty thrifty sundayThis post was shared on Nifty Thrifty Sunday link party!

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9 thoughts on “DIY Spray Painted Console Table: How to Update Furniture with Spray Paint

    • Thank you! The holes in the table were a less common distance than what is sold at most stores so had to order them online. I needed something rather thick to cover the existing holes which are quite large. Very pleased with how they look.

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