Using Gel Stain, you can stain wood furniture darker without stripping the old stain AND without sanding the old finish off. It’s EASY!
Stain Wood Furniture Without Stripping or Sanding
Every DIYer should know how to stain wood furniture without stripping or sanding off the old stain. It makes furniture makeovers SO MUCH EASIER.
Furniture takes a beating over the years. The stain finish can get worn down, dinged, scratched and chipped over the years. But, you can give stained furniture a quick refresh in just one day.
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Using most gel stains, you can darken wood stain, or stay the same color, without removing the old stain. I usually use General Finishes Gel Stain because the finish always looks beautiful.
AND, if you have that old orange tinted stain on any furniture, doors, stair railing, or any wood in your home, you can use these exact steps to cover that orange wood look with a darker wood stain.
Now, let’s get to the steps to Stain Furniture Without Stripping or Sanding Off the old finish.
Darken Wood Stain Without Sanding or Stripping – Video
Seeing someone do something always helps me understand the DIY better. Watch this 3-minute video for a better look at each of the written steps.
Here’s What You’ll Need
- Fine Grit Sanding Block
- Medium Grit Sanding Block – for rough finishes (see step 1)
- General Finishes Java Gel Stain
- Foam Brushes
- Minwax Water Based Wipe On Poly in Satin Sheen
- OR General Finishes High Performance Top Coat
Steps To Gel Stain Wood Furniture Darker
Please Note: You can also see the steps to stain wood furniture without stripping or sanding in the video above.
These steps are only for previously stained wood – painted and bare wood would have a few different steps. Always follow safety directions on any product you use.
If you want to stain bare wood a deep rich brown stain color, check out my Steps to Stain Wood post. Those steps will work on any bare wood.
Use a little dawn and warm water or TSP to clean your furniture.
If you’re old finish is smooth enough for you to leave it alone, then lightly sand with a fine grit sanding block. That will rough up the old finish enough for the new finish to bond to it.
If the old finish is rough to the touch, chipped, or uneven, then start by sanding it smooth with a medium grit sanding block. You don’t need to completely sand off the old finish, just sand it smooth.
Then lightly sand the entire surface with a fine grit sanding block. That will rough up the old finish enough for the new finish to bond to it.
Apply Gel Stain with a foam brush. Apply a light even coat. Gel Stain can be gummy and not dry completely if applied too thick.
Always follow directions on the container for dry time and safety. I used 2 coats to cover the original stain.
Seal and protect with 6 coats of Matte Finish Wipe On Poly. Or, if you prefer thicker, water-based brush on poly, you could use 2 or 3 coats of General Finishes High Performance Top Coat.
That’s it! Easy, right? It just takes a little time to get this beautiful stained wood look on your furniture. 🙂
More Pictures Of This Dark Gel Stain Finish
Looking for more of my DIY Furniture Makeover videos? You can see them here, on my YouTube channel. 🙂
More DIY’s For You
And, you might also like this DIY for Stripping Paint from Wood Furniture With Citristrip.
Or, this post on how to Get a Smooth Finish with Chalk Paint – Easy Steps & Video.
Or, check out this classic Dark Blue with Dark Wax Cabinet Makeover.
Feeling inspired? Now that you’ve seen this Stain Wood Furniture Without Stripping tutorial, you can do it too. Let me know if you have questions. Don’t forget to sign up for the Abbotts At Home email newsletter to get DIY, Remodeling, and Crafty ideas in your inbox.