Shown: Unfinished Manhattan Conversion Crib

When you buy unfinished furniture it’s your chance to truly put your mark on it and make it your own. You get the chance to decide on the finishing touch that really makes it part of your family and home. With every stroke of the sand paper and brush it becomes more and more your own creation. From keeping the natural look of the wood to completely painting it the ultimate choice of how you complete the finishing process depends on you and your tastes. Something else that great about buying it unfinished is that you can use the exact same stain, paint or other coating the you have used on the rest of your furniture. A guaranteed match is quite often worth the extra time and effort it takes to finish furniture.

Obviously the larger the piece the more time, effort and in some cases the more specialized the equipment is to complete the finishing process. The old adage of anything in life worth doing takes time and effort is very true, especially when it comes to finishing furniture.

Furniture that is unfinished is much like a canvas that needs to be prepared before a true masterpiece can be created. If you prepare everything properly it will show up in the finished product and it will truly be something you can be proud of. From preparing the surface and applying the sanding sealer to doing the last coat of finish it all needs to be done carefully.

Before you start the finishing process run your hands over the bare wood. Feel for burrs, rough spots or low spots. On the edges look for sharp points that can become splinters. If you feel any of them take your time and sand out the imperfections. Once you are satisfied with how well you have prepared the wood you have a decision to make. Do you apply a sanding sealer to make the surface even smoother or do you go straight for the paint or stain. If you choose either the sanding sealer or the stain you will have more sanding to do. Getting unfinished wood wet will cause parts of the grain to swell. This is unavoidable as it part of the nature of real wood. After the sealer or stain dries you’ll feel little burrs and rough spots all over the wood. You will need to lightly sand them down with a fairly high grit sandpaper, 300 to 440, to return it to the smooth surface you’re looking for.

After you sand chances are you’ll have to apply another coat and re-sand everything again. The time spent on this part of the finishing process is what will give you furniture the look you really want. After you sand everything down for the last time and it’s had the chance to completely then and only then can you begin the final process of finishing your furniture. There are many choices of top coats and they all have their advantages and dis-advantages. Make sure you do your research on the characteristics of the top coat that way you get the look and durability you want. In most cases 2 coats of your chosen finish are plenty. But again this depends on what you have chosen. Some are brushed on others work best when sprayed on. In between the 2 coats you may want to let it dry completely and check for rough spots or dust and dirt in the finish before proceeding. Getting it sanded out before the last coat is applied is much easier then having to live with a finish you can’t stand or even worse have to completely refinish the whole thing.

With some care and attention to detail buying unfinished Amish furniture is a very rewarding experience that gives you the chance to make one of these heirloom pieces your own.

Currently, we do not offer the feature to order unfinished furniture from our website. If you are interested in putting your own touch on a piece, please call us at (586) 323-4895 or email us at

4 thoughts on “Unfinished Furniture

  1. Joyce A Principato says:

    do you make corner cabinets for the dining room? we are looking to purchase two with doors that have glass in them

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