My husband built our family a wood table in a rich dark stain four years ago. In order to keep his masterpiece, I stripped the stain and re-stained in Early American.
A little over 4 years ago, my husband finished building our family’s kitchen table. He was SO proud of this table and even posted it to his Instagram (he never posts anything!). Fast forward and now we’re in our new home; sadly, this rich, dark stain no longer works with our kitchen makeover.
This corner took shape slowly but surely. I made faux Roman Shades and reupholstered the kitchen chairs. The last thing was to update the table. When we realized the dark table wasn’t going to work anymore, my husband looked a little crushed. So while he was away this past weekend, I spent HOURS refinishing his wood table masterpiece.
Stripped Wood Table Process
There are several ways to strip stain from wood furniture. Sanding is the most popular, but you could also use chemical strippers or gel strippers like CitriStrip. Regardless of which process you choose, it is best to move the piece outdoors as it can get dusty and/or let off strong fumes.
**Be sure to follow safety guidelines when using stripping liquids and gels.
These are the steps I used to strip the dark stain from our wood farmhouse table.
- Sandpaper (40, 60, 80, 120, 220 grit)
- orbital sander
- Citristrip (Optional)
- Wire Brush
- microfiber or tack cloth
In hopes of saving a lot of time, I attempted to use CitriStrip on the table top first.
Apply a thick coat and test in 30 minutes. You can leave cover the stripper with plastic and leave overnight.
This is what it looked like after leaving it overnight. There was some lift in color, but not much. You may need to repeat the process several times.
However, I scrapped the stripper and went about this the old-fashioned way….sanding.
If you do use the stripping gel, make sure to clean the surface really well afterwards. I used a wire brush to remove any remaining goo.
Reluctantly, I moved on to sanding. Start with 40 grit sandpaper when stripping stain. Once you’ve gotten the wood down to the original color, you will gradually start increasing the grit of your sandpaper – 60, 80, 120, 220 and even up to 400.
Overall, I would estimate that it took me about 8 hours to completely sand off the old stain. The result was 100% worth it!
In order to coordinate with our existing kitchen decor, I used a very light version of Early American stain. Working quickly, I applied a small section of stain and immediately wiped it off. Some parts of the top looked a little dark, so I took a 220 grit sandpaper and gently went over those parts.
Here is the result!
I will be using Minwax Polycrylic to seal the entire table.
I am in LOVE!! Fingers crossed my husband loves it too when he gets home tonight!