/ / / Paint Sprayer Turned a Dreaded Project into the Best Ever!

Paint Sprayer Turned a Dreaded Project into the Best Ever!

Did you know that airless paint sprayers can turn the most dreaded projects into the best project ever? Have you wondered if you can use an airless sprayer inside of your home?

This honestly is probably one of the most interesting projects I have ever tackled! It started with a need to makeover my 20 year old bedroom furniture.

It was time for an update that was inexpensive and to me that means paint!

It’s really beautiful furniture and I know there are those that never would paint such a beautiful piece, but I needed to see something different in my bedroom leftover from my married life.

Dark stained nightstand sitting next to bed before painting
Nightstand Before

The biggest issue I faced was the size of the French carved armoire.  

Trying to move it into my home was nearly impossible.  

That posed the biggest challenge to an update with paint.  

I DREADED having to prime and paint this piece knowing how LONG it was going to take.

Dark Stained French Carved Armoire
Armoire Before

Since I am a person who has learned to work smarter not harder, I reached out to Wagner Spray Tech (after meeting them at the Haven bloggers conference) in a plea for help.

Can I use one of your paint sprayers to spray this armoire INSIDE my home? Is this a crazy idea?

Luckily, they answered and provided me with a free Wagner Studio Pro Sprayer and sponsored this post to show what is possible!

My experience and advice about the products used in this post are my own and unbiased.

This post is sponsored by Wagner®. I love a company who believes in their products.

Wagner Studio Pro Painter_iSpray Attachment+Before

First, let’s get into the paint project in general.  I worked for Valspar (paint sold at Lowe’s), so I am a super fan of their products!

Tips for Painting a Stained Piece of Furniture

Can of Valspar Bonding Primer, Valspar Cabinet Enamel, Wooster paint brush and paint brush cleaner, package of foam paint rollers
Supplies for Painting
  1. You MUST prime before you paint with any kind of paint other than chalk paint.
  2. To prevent the stain from bleeding through to the final color, I always use Valspar’s Bonding Primer – it sticks to anything!
  3. For a semi-gloss finish that requires NO top coat, I recommend Valspar Cabinet Enamel for painting furniture.

Paint Supplies

Here are the general supplies that were unique to this project. This post contains affiliate links, but all recommendations are my own!

  • Paint Strainer – for removing any debris from the paint before spraying.
  • Masking Tape – use the inexpensive stuff for taping the floor (I made the mistake of using Frog Tape, which is more expensive).
  • Frog Tape – to tape the walls or when masking areas you don’t want to receive paint.
  • Painter’s Plastic – this was used to protect the floors, walls, and furniture and is MUCH cheaper than drop cloths.
  • Spray Shelter– great all purpose shelter for spray painting anything. Helps contain overspray to the floor.
  • Wagner Studio Paint Sprayer – airless painting tool.

Paint Color: Lowe’s / Valspar Light Raffia 3008-10B

Set-Up for Using a Paint Sprayer in a Spray Shelter

garage floor masked with plastic and taped down with frog tape
Mask Floor with Plastic
Home Right spray shelter assembled and in garage
Spray Shelter Assembled
dark stained night stand inside of Home Right spray paint shelter
Night Stand in Shelter
  1. Within a garage, move out cars to an alternate location and sweep the floor.
  2. Mask floor or grass with two layers of painter’s plastic and adhere with tape.
  3. Assemble and place spray shelter – this took 10 minutes and I HIGHLY recommend watching this video first (thank goodness for it!)
  4. Tape over any areas that may have gotten ripped while placing shelter.
  5. Place furniture in center and toward back of shelter to minimize over spray. Get a neighbor to help – thanks, George for helping me!
The Wagner Studio Pro Sprayer Gave me Back 4 Days of my LIFE! That’s 2 weekends people!

Now I need to share why the paint sprayer turned a dreaded paint project into the best ever!  The truth is dry time is the real enemy, but hand painting requires so much more time.

Spraying inside of the shelter and my garage was a piece of cake! The only issue I faced is bugging my neighbor every few hours to help me rotate out nightstands, but if you have a willing person to help you then you eliminate that issue.

Painting the Armoire was a whole new challenge

It’s time to be honest. After I sprayed inside the shelter, I got scared to spray inside of my house.

I wasn’t sure how I was going to contain the overspray and that is a huge concern.

So I proceeded to hand prime the armoire in my bedroom and it took 5 HOURS of unpleasant time I can’t get back.

My Instagram story has me referring to this project as “the worst idea I’ve ever had” and the project as “the devil”.  

I was so upset that I’d started this project and worried I couldn’t finish it.

I decided to do the unthinkable and use a paint sprayer INSIDE of my master bedroom!

Pin It for Later!

How to use a Wagner paint sprayer inside of your home

See that fabulous 3-D carving on top? Well a paint brush doesn’t reach behind it.  

So what did I do?

Covered the close-by horizontal surfaces and hit that section VERY carefully with the iSpray attachment. Joy!

It worked and I could contain the overspray.

large carved french armoire against blue wall covered in white bonding primer
Primed Armoire

Before I went to bed that night, I planned the fortress of plastic

There it is folks! How this dreaded paint project was the best project ever because I switched from hand painting to using an airless paint sprayer.

When It’s Time to Buy a Paint Sprayer

That’s how I saved myself 2 weekends!

If I would have tried to hand paint the armoire, it would have taken one day per coat of paint because I would have needed 2 coats.

That is 3 days alone and because hand painting creates a thicker coat I wouldn’t have been able to touch the armoire until it dried overnight.

This would have killed 4 days of my life.

Armoire Painted with a Paint Sprayer
Armoire Painted with a Paint Sprayer

The finish NEVER would have been as smooth as with a paint sprayer and I would have had a very hard time getting into all of the carved detail creating a frustrating experience.

I’m SO happy with the outcome of this project I’m going to show you what I did!

Set-Up for Using  a Paint Sprayer Inside a Room

This set up is CRITICAL!. The Control Nozzle Sprayer leaves a fine mist of dried paint EVERYWHERE.

Wait for a day that no rain is the forecast and it’s cool enough to keep the windows open for most of the day.

You will make yourself a plastic FORTRESS! 

I used furniture sliders to help move all of my furniture.  Click here for what I used.

furniture in bedroom covered in plastic prior to spray painting
Cover Horizontal Surfaces with Plastic
  1. Push all additional furniture pieces away from furniture being sprayed. Take down adjacent art from walls.
  2. OPEN windows for ventilation and turn-off ceiling fans. TURN OFF HVAC, so you don’t pull paint dust into system.
  3. Cover ALL horizontal surfaces with painter’s plastic and tape gaps.
  4. Use painter’s plastic up walls behind, to the left, and right of the furniture piece you are spraying. Mask off door openings to adjacent rooms.
  5. Place extra tape around the feet of the furniture you spraying to avoid the force of the paint spray to make it through to the floor.
  6. For an additional layer of protection around the furniture being sprayed, place cardboard.
Walls and floors covered in plastic prior to spray painting
Cover Walls Behind, Left and Right of Furniture

What Comes in the Wagner Studio Pro Paint Sprayer Box

Let’s talk about this fabulous paint sprayer and how to use it to paint furniture! CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE on Amazon

Wagner Studio Pro HVLP Sprayer
Photo Credit: Wagner

Are you intimidated by the thought of using an airless paint sprayer? Please don’t be!

This was the first time I used a paint sprayer. You can become a pro with a little practice on the paper they include or on some cardboard.

I was up and running plus comfortable with the paint sprayer in under 30 minutes.

The sprayer itself looks large, but that white box is really a handy storage unit that holds:

  1. Handle/Air Hose Assembly
  2. Black Tubing
  3. Control Finish Nozzle
  4. iSpray Nozzle
  5. Practice Paper
  6. Manual

“Trust me, I sighed when I saw all of this. I thought it was going to be hard to figure out how to use two different attachments. It’s NOT!”

Wagner included really easy to understand instructions and the two sprayer attachments are simple to use.

iSpray Nozzle – Broad surface coverage for thicker materials and leaves a coarse finish. I used this for the Valspar Bonding Primer, which I strained:

Wagner iSpray Nozzle
Wagner iSpray Nozzle
Valspar Bonding Primer with paper paint strainer, paper towels and paint sprayer container
Bonding Primer

Control Finish Nozzle – Smaller project coverage for thinner materials and leaves a fine finish. I used this for the Valspar Cabinet Enamel:

Wagner Control Finish Nozzle sitting on floor with Valspar Cabinet Enamel
Wagner Control Finish Nozzle

Spray Settings

Please follow the instructions that come with the Wagner Studio Pro Sprayer (click here for the user manual) and adjust while practicing on a piece of cardboard.


For the iSpray and Primer, I used Max Output (white dial on trigger) and Max Air Power plus a wide spray.

Valspar Bonding Primer is thick primer so I wanted as much coverage and force as possible.

Wagner Studio Pro Painter Max Airflow_ Primer
Air Power Setting
Spray Width Setting
Spray Width Setting

For the Control Finish Nozzle, I used Mid Output (black dial on trigger) and 8 Air Power for a finer finish. There is not a setting for the spray width.

Material Output on Trigger
Material Output on Trigger

Time and Coats

The nightstands:

  • Each coat of primer and paint took 15 minutes at MOST to apply and this was me being a perfectionist!
  • The primer and paint was dry to the touch in 2 to 3 hours.
  • Only ONE coat of primer and ONE coat of paint was required!
  • The paint was fully dry overnight and fully cured 2 days and objects could be placed on the surface of the nightstand.
  • Clean-up just required hot water and some patience, but wasn’t difficult.

The armoire paint project started at 8am and by 1pm the room was back in use. AMAZING!

The Armoire paint sprayer part of the project in particular amazed me:

Plastic draping = 1 hour

Painting = 45 minutes

Dry time = 2 hours

Clean up = 1 hour

Final Outcome

Look at the beautiful finish the paint sprayer delivered with one coat!

The paint is amazing, but the way it was applied using a sprayer provided the deep coverage in the carved areas of the nightstands and armoire.

This went from the worst paint project to the best paint project EVER and I’ve done a ton of painting.

UPDATE: I did another HUGE project using my airless paint sprayer that includes video tutorials: Click Here

master bedroom with large carved white french armoire after being painted with wager airless paint sprayer

french carved nightstand painted white

close up of carved detail on a white nightstand

close up of top of armoire painted white with Wagner paint sprayer

close up of carved detail on french armoire after being painted with a Wagner paint sprayer

At this point, I hope you are as impressed as I am with the Wagner Studio Pro Paint Sprayer and are now inspired to try some of your own projects!

Next on the agenda for the paint sprayer? My office cabinets, chairs, a coffee table, some baskets, a lamp…

The great news is I am EXCITED because I know how fast and easy these projects will be because I’ll be using my airless paint sprayer!

Have you thought about painting cabinets? Click here for how to paint cabinets!

As my FREE GIFT to you, with email sign-up a detailed paint sheen project guide! 

You will know the right sheen for every project…


Please consider following me on Pinterest and Instagram for daily inspiration.

Until next time…

Porch Daydreamer


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  1. I’m loving all that you do!! Maybe I missed it but what color are you using on moldings (lv, kitchen, dining)? Thanks, T

  2. Love this!!! I just sprayed my masterbath vanity cabinets after looking at your blog and LOVE them!! They turned out amazing!!! Next up was redo of the master bedroom, but after painting, our dark cherry furniture is not looking great. We also have a large armoire. I am inspried and going to paint the all the furniture after reading your post. Just have to pick a great color!

    Thanks so much!!!

  3. I am looking to paint my kitchen cabinets, and purchased the Valspar Cabinet Paint. I’m wondering if I can use it in my sprayer? I have used other paint, and we needed to add some water to thin the paint out, so it would go through our sprayer. But I can’t find how it will affect the Valspar paint. Did you dilute the paint? Does your sprayer require you to dilute for other paints? Thanks in advance

    1. I’m a new subscriber and you have me so inspired! I am seriously considering painting a heavy looking, old oak armoire that I was tempted to sell (but there are so many available for resale). I can now envision how it could look beautiful and fresh with some paint near its beveled glass and mirror.
      Question: Is it reasonable to paint it in the bedroom if I safely cover the floor and furnishings? I can’t imagine moving it to the garage without hiring movers 🙂

  4. I have several pieces of furniture to paint and have found your information so helpful. Thank you. I have a question about the Valspar Cabinet paint. Does it come in different finishes? Your end results look like it has a matte finish, which is what I’m looking for. I love the look of chalk paint but don’t want to use it because I need something durable for dining room table tops. I’ve ready about making DIY chalk paint with “any paint” but does that really work? One last question…sorry. If using the Valspar cabinet paint for a dining room table that will get used daily do you think I need to use a poly top coat?

  5. This is my first comment on this blog, and I’m a new follower:) I wanted to chime in on the comment about how someone disagreed with your choice of painting these pieces. For me, I can’t understand why people are so turned off about painting anything! I would rather “update” great pieces of furniture and breath new life into them, than to try and sell them for pennies only to turn around and have to spend $2-3K for a new Amoire like that! And if you did buy an Armoire that was cheaper, it was made from junk materials as well. Bottom line, if you like wood- HOORAY! If you like paint- HOORAY! Do your thing because it doesn’t matter. BTW, I’ve been a painter for over 30 years and you’ve done a magnificent job to your home. Having a little ingenuity is a great thing;)

  6. Hi Tracey,
    Did you spray the inside of the armoire too? And did you take the drawers out of the nightstand to paint them or just paint it all at once with the drawers pulled open a little? I read your kitchen cabinet painting instructions in which you stated you took everything apart. Then read this post and you didn’t mention how you did the drawers so I was wondering how you managed these details. Forgive me if I sound stupid… I have an entire bedroom set that needs painting and I’m partially disabled and it’s wishful thinking on my part to think I can get away with not having to take out all the drawers and paint them one by one the way you did the kitchen cabinet doors.

    1. Patrice, no worries I am happy to answer your questions. To save myself time and trouble, I didn’t spray inside of the armoire because I always leave the doors closed. Then the nightstand drawers are NOT removable, so I just pulled them out a bit to spray. Recently, I’ve repainted them for another bedroom makeover but by hand this time and did the same thing just pulling out the drawers a bit! If you want to see what they look like now, here is that post https://porchdaydreamer.com/master-bedroom-mini-makeover-reveal/.

      Good luck 😉

  7. Some furniture looks better painted, but not these pieces. I am certainly more traditional when it comes to wood finishes. Spiffing up an old flea market find with paint is one thing, but covering beautiful natural wood furniture, not so much.

    1. Marianne, I address how long I’ve owned this piece and that I took time to consider whether to paint it or not. You clearly just wanted to post your opinion, which adds no value to others, but I’m allowing it. This would have become a flea market find for someone else, if I didn’t paint it. Now it has a new life in my home and will for many years to come. It’s the first piece people compliment me on when they enter my home and walk up to get a closer look at the details. I believe it is even more beautiful following my artful paint job and mimics antiques you find in France that have been hand painted generations ago. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder…

      1. Tracey, couldn’t agree more!

        I also had (very expensive)
        bedroom furniture that had great lines, but I had never cared for the wood tone. Besides, my husband had passed, & I needed to start my own life.

        Rather than donate/sell something that I liked(but didn’t love), I chose to repaint it, following your directions. It turned out beautifully!

        So now I have pieces that suit ME, & I didn’t have to spend a fortune to replace!

      2. I agree! I’ve painted many large pieces in my home when I no longer cared for the wood tones and those are the first ones that guests are drawn to and complement. Thank you so much for the step by step process using a sprayer- that’s my next challenge. Looks like lots of prep but your results are gorgeous!

  8. I absolutely love how your bedroom furniture turned out. I have very expensive French country bedroom furniture that I would love to paint, but my husband won’t agree. 🙁 Not yet anyway!
    Your blog and Home are amazing- I just found it via Southern Hospitality and I’ll enjoy looking at every single post you’ve ever posted! And of course I’ve subscribed.
    Thank you for all the inspiration!

    1. Jeanne! Awww that makes me sooo happy. Blogging is tough because it’s something you do alone and HOPE someone reads what you wrote 🙂 So glad you are enjoying what I’ve created. That made my day! Yes, I’ve had my furniture a LONG time and didn’t take painting it lightly. My mom thought I was crazy, but after I was finished said – yep I see what you saw now and love it. Now I am thinking of sanding the paint off of the hardware on the nightstands, after seeing how well my credenza came out. Maybe that will be part of my fall makeover???

  9. . Sorry, but I come down on the side that the furniture is ruined. I think that it might have been a better idea to remove the dark stain and restrain in a lighter color. But, to each her own, or, as my mother used to say: “that’s what makes horse racing.”

    1. Define “ruined. ” Her painted pieces are being used to hold clothing and enjoyed as part of a beautiful cohesively decorated bedroom. The paint can be removed at any point and the furniture can be stained again. If she had removed the original stain just to apply a lighter one the factory finish would still be forever, and worse still she wouldn’t have executed her design. I have a bedroom full of mahogany pieces all painted a cream white at the factory. Was the furniture ruined when it came out of the North Carolina Henredon factory? Are the black lacquered chairs and nesting tables in Edith Biltmore’s bedroom ruined? Did Micheal Angelo “ruin” the ceiling of Sistine Chapel? Should he have stained it instead and shown off all that “beautiful wood?” A beautifully decorated space needs a mixture of finishes. The fear of paint (and change in general) inhibits good design. It isn’t just a matter of “vive la difference” either. Name one great celebrated decorator who is afraid of painting wood. You can’t. So you have people who love design and those who love wood.

  10. I normally would have preferred the original wood pieces, but the painted pieces are really beautiful. What a great job. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Wow-I definitely want to do our bedroom furniture, I have handles that swing, can I handpaint them and reattach? Thank you

  12. This is really, wonderful! The transformation in the furniture doesn’t affect its beauty at all, but rather the ‘feel’- you have created a beautiful room- thank you so much for sharing. I hope you have inspired others to take their furniture from “old”, to “new”-

  13. I love all your projects! I was intimidated by the idea of a paint sprayer but this year thought what the heck just go for it after trying to hand paint one dining chair that was taking hours of frustration to paint. Like you I had to paint indoors. I brought all six chairs to the basement. I did use two coats of primer just to be extra safe as I didn’t want to do this again. Then two coats of paint. So three days of painting and WOW they are amazing now. I would have included a photo but there is no option to do so. Just a another little comment….You are a very beautiful woman and a joy to watch!

  14. This is exactly what I want to do with my bedroom set! Mine also dates back to my marriage (however, my husbandpassed away), & I’ve finally realized that I need to transform this furniture to something that suits ME, not WE.
    Thanks for giving me the courage to take the plunge!

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