In our house, there is a wall with a fireplace that can be seen from both our living and family rooms. On each wall is a mantel. Years ago I painted the mantel in one room dark brown, in order to cover the 1980's oak that was everywhere. I've been pleased with the brown mantel, but when I saw this post
from Centsational Girl's blog it inspired me to try stripping the paint off the mantel in order to sand and stain it. Here is what the mantel looked like before.
I gathered my materials (at Home Depot)
Using a regular paintbrush, I applied the Citristrip and within 20 minutes, this is what the paint looked like.
Within 45 minutes I was strippin' that paint off and it came off beautifully. It was back to the original oak color.
After the wood had dried I used an orbital sander to get the varnish off. I found a dark stain (officially called "Dark Walnut) that we had in the cabinet. Using a disposable sponge "brush" I applied 2 coats, letting the first coat dry overnight and then applying the second coat the following day.
Here is the after color:
I'm happy with the outcome, however seeing the wood grain again is going to take some getting used to. It was solid brown for so long.