This high boy dresser is made of mahogany, which is notorious for bleeding. Have you ever tried to paint a piece of mahogany furniture white only to have the paint turn pink? You can apply ten coats of white paint to mahogany and you will never fully get rid of those terrible pink stains.
I almost always use a shellac based primer when painting mahogany. A shellac based primer will typically stop the bleeding with only one coat. It is a miraculous product!
However, there are some occasions when I choose NOT to prime at all. In this case I am painting this dresser a deep, bold red. I plan on heavily distressing it once it is painted. I also plan on staining it to give it an aged patina. If I were to prime this dresser the distressing, which is done with sandpaper and removes the paint to expose raw wood, would also expose the primer. Since primer only comes in white, grey and brown exposing it would not be desirable. When finished I only want to see natural wood and a beautiful red.
So, in other words, if I plan on distressing a piece of furniture I skip priming it. White would be the only exception.
Alchemy fine living is a creative business. My mom and I offer furniture painting services, simple upholstery, and custom slipcovers.
We have been painting furniture for clients for over a decade now. The two of us have been sewing our whole lives. We've sewn things like prom dresses and bathing suits, but back in 2008 we decided to focus our seamstress abilities on home decorative items; specifically custom made slipcovers.
I'm Deana, the author of this blog. My mom, Connie, taught me from a young age how to spot a deal at a flea market or a thrift shop. She could always spot the hidden potential of an old, worn out piece of furniture. I learned to sew when I was four years old and all through the years I helped my mom with DIY projects around the house.
In 2008 she & I turned our hobby into a business. We offer furniture painting, upholstery, and sewing services.