Whether you find a unique old chair at a garage sale or you have one that you want to resurface and stain, you can easily restore the chair when you resurface and stain it. This is a fairly straightforward project that allows you to breathe new life into the chair far more affordably than buying new furniture. Take a look at the steps you will take to resurface and stain a wooden chair.
Choose Your Work Space
Since this project involves both sanding and staining, you want to make sure you choose a space that is well ventilated. Start by placing a drop cloth on the floor to protect it. Place your chair on the drop cloth. You will want to have gloves and safety glasses to protect your eyes, and you can use a ventilated mask for extra protection.
Sand the Chair
Next, you will need 120-grit sandpaper to sand the chair. You will sand the entire chair, and follow along with a cloth to wipe the dust and debris as you go. You want the entire chair to be completely smooth when you finish. If you come across any rough patches, continue sanding them until they have a smooth finish. You can finish with a finer 220-grit sandpaper. Wipe the chair with a damp cloth to make sure that it is completely free of dust and particles.
Use a Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner
You can follow the directions of the manufacturer depending on what brand of conditioner you use, but this step will condition the wood before you stain it. This will help the wood to absorb the stain evenly.
Apply the Stain with a Rag or a Bristle Brush
You can test a small area that is on the underside of the chair before you get started. This will give you an idea of how long you should leave the stain on before you wipe it off. Generally, the longer you leave the stain on, the darker it will be. If the chair is flat with smooth surfaces, you can use a rag to apply the stain. If it has carvings and is more ornate, you will want to use a bristle brush for staining.
Let the Stain Set
Leave the stain on for the amount of time you decided when you did the test patch. If you leave it on longer, it will get darker. You can decide what shade you want the chair, and leave the stain on until it reaches that tone. Then, use a clean cloth to wipe away any excess stain.
Protect the Chair with Polyurethane
Let the chair dry completely, and then you can apply a protective coat of polyurethane. This will make your chair more durable and less likely to be damaged by normal use. Make sure that you let the stain dry before you apply the polyurethane, and then let it dry completely before you use it. You should give it at least a day or two.