First, most pieces are easily cleaned up for painting by using dish soap and water, then rinse and dry! Really dirty pieces, use TSP and then rinse well and dry!
First coat -- don't expect total coverage. Like Annie Sloan says, just slap it on so you can get onto the interesting bits! Depending on how you want the finished piece to look decide if you will go with the grain or not. I paint the backs of my pieces as you never know what people will look at and here in the shop, all sides are exposed usually. I am careful with older pieces or quality pieces to leave the manufacturer and shipping labels legible -- just paint around them.
Decide what you will do with the pulls and hinges. In this case, I did not remove them as the whole thing should look like a metallic, patina finish when we are done!
Sorry, the lighting makes this look like Duck Egg on the close up -- but it is actually Florence!
I have just done a coat of clear wax after two coats of paint all over! This project could be finished completely by now, but we do have customers coming in to talk and discuss their next projects....Now for some of the especially fun bits! Applying some Copper Gilding Wax and it takes very little! We carry seven colors of gilding wax: 3 golds, silver, pewter, brass and now copper!
Applied copper gilding wax with finger.
Sorry for the delay in finishing this post. We had internet issues yesterday. But here i the final after dark waxing! And we added a surprise pop of Emperor's Silk to the drawers and interior!