Help me lacquer up a bookcase
November 20, 2009 8:32 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a long white lacquered bookcase and found this one at Ikea. Unfortunately, the white version of the bookcase is not lacquered like the other colors. Would it be difficult for me to apply a lacquer finish to it?

It says it's particle board with acrylic paint but I've looked at it in person and it's not shiny like lacquer at all. What are my options here to lacquer it up? Can I paint over the existing surface, what kind of product do I buy, etc?

On a side note, I read somewhere that you if you take a piece of furniture into a car body repair shop, they will often give it a good coat of lacquer spray very cheaply. Has anyone ever done this and how did that work out for you?
posted by gfrobe to Home & Garden (4 answers total)
I've never lacqured IKEA stuff, but why not go to the 'as-is' section and pick up a sample board (I'm sure they have a bit of scrap Expidit for cheap). Then take it home and try spraying glossy polyurethane on it....then if it doesn't work, you're not out the $60 ruining the bookcase.
posted by rtodd at 8:54 AM on November 20, 2009 [1 favorite]

You could take it to a cabinetmaker to have that done. Look for a small custom cabinets shop near you.

I've been learning to spray lacquer this week and it's probably not worth the cost to do it yourself for a one-time deal. Also, it takes practice to do it well.
posted by jewzilla at 9:10 AM on November 20, 2009

You could try asking at ikeafans - there isn't a hack that someone there hasn't pulled off.
posted by lakeroon at 10:24 AM on November 20, 2009

Seconding the sample piece. On the other hand, there are TONS of websites/videos/etc that give you advice on how to apply lacquer in top of acrylic. I've done it myself - once you know the base paint, finding a compatible lacquer is a snap. I used an acrylic Krylon spray-on lacquer that is about as fool-proof as you need. Dries nice and shiny and smooth. Keep the spray light and hold it pretty far away from the surface, use more than one coat, take your time.

Honestly, this is a $60 cabinet - at worst its going to look like a $60 cabinet.
posted by neksys at 10:36 AM on November 20, 2009

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