Painted Rocking Chair – From dated to stunning!

Jun 14 2016
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I scored at an estate sale a while back, picking upΒ one painted rocking chair, another chair withΒ a matching couch, two end tables and a coffee table for only $100 and, as you might imagine, I had big plans for all of it! You can read my post about when I picked them up here. I already completed the two end tables awhile back and I’m very happy to report that I still love them in my living room! Two end tables get a sweet country makeover. This last weekend I spent the ENTIRE day Saturday working on the painted rocking chair and the matching chair and couch and the coffee table.

I had set out Saturday to get the painted rocking chair finished but as soon as I set foot in my garage, dressed in my work clothes and all ready to go, my heart sank and I called myself several four letter words. The rocking chair needed some wood putty fixes and fills in a couple of places and wood putty takes a VERY long time to dry. Dangnabit! Well, I wouldn’t be getting that painted rocking chair done that Saturday now would I!?

Dated rocking chair gets a before and after makeover with black painted rocking chair, before and afters, DIY.

Fortunately, like any good DIYer, there were other projects I could work on (isn’t there always?) So I got to work on the matching couch, chair and coffee table. Six hours later and they had two coats of primer, three coats of paint and I was ready to NEVER see my garage or a paint brush again. Someday I’m going to buy myself a paint sprayer and wonder forever why I hadn’t bought it SO MUCH sooner!

But I digress, I don’t own a paint sprayer, I own hands and paint brushes. With the promise to spend all day Sunday with my hubby I may have gotten a lot done but NONE of it was finished and one project I wanted to get done last weekend had nothing but a little wood putty on it! So, I took yesterday (Monday) off and tackled this old rocking chair πŸ™‚

Dated rocking chair gets a before and after makeover with black painted rocking chair, before and afters, DIY.

I hate to admit that a lot of my paint choices are based on what I have on hand. (Paint is expensive!) I happened to have an almost-full can of black Rustoleum flat paint left over from painting my interior doors so I grabbed it for this painted rocking chair. The chair itself was sturdy and in really good shape but it needed a makeover BADLY. I sanded the entire chair down and got to painting.

The thing is about oil based paints like Rustoleum they take a LONG time to dry. So, between coats on this painted rocking chair I touched up the entire matching chair, couch and coffee table set then put two coats of exterior sealant on it. Now, all I need to do is buy cushions and I’ll be able to call it done and show you guys my new outdoor furniture set!!

Dated rocking chair gets a before and after makeover with black painted rocking chair, before and afters, DIY.

I put a coat of exterior poly on this chair after putting on three coats of the black Rustoleum paint on it. I wanted it to be indoor/outdoor. I was nervous going into this actually. This is my very first project bought entirely on the plan to give it a makeover and sell it! I’m excited and I’m nervous, I keep thinking, “What if it doesn’t sell?!” But, like everything, I shall see how it goes πŸ™‚

I think it turned out really stunning and I think it would work in just about any home or porch whether for a nursery or just a place to rock with a morning cup of coffee or tea. This is truly the first step I’m taking toward my dream of refinishing furniture for a living, it is a very long term goal, but it is exciting for meΒ to take the first step even if it is only a little one!

Dated rocking chair gets a before and after makeover with black painted rocking chair, before and afters, DIY.Dated rocking chair gets a before and after makeover with black painted rocking chair, before and afters, DIY.

If you saw my Inspiration Board on Stunning Rocking Chairs then you know how much I drooled over a couple of them painted in black! I’m almost torn to sell this painted rocking chair, it sure turned out puuurrrty πŸ™‚

Thanks, as always guys, for coming by!!

Dated rocking chair gets a before and after makeover with black painted rocking chair, before and afters, DIY.Dated rocking chair hand painted with black rustoleum 70's furniture antique diy do it yourself refinish refinished before and afters makeover


  1. June 15, 2016 at 3:34 am

    That rocking chair is gorgeous now! I’m sure it will sell fast to someone with good taste.

    • June 15, 2016 at 3:01 pm

      Thank you!! I hope so πŸ™‚

  2. Sherri
    June 18, 2016 at 3:28 am

    Love the rocking chair! I don’t know if you remember that I have written to you before, I am the gal that is from Park Rapids. I now live in Otsego/Elk River area and sell repurposed furniture on facebook garage sale sites and at an occasional shop in Buffalo. While I love the rocking chair, they just don’t sell, at least in this area. My popular pieces are usually small tables, nightstands and desks. Good Luck!

    • June 18, 2016 at 9:57 pm

      Hey Sherri, its good to hear from you again! Yeah, we’ll see how it goes, I finished it so it would be durable enough to be on a front porch or outside too and I’m not going to charge much for it, but you just never know! Thanks for coming by again πŸ™‚

  3. June 22, 2016 at 11:33 pm

    It turned out great! I too will work on mutiple projects ant one time… Aways something to do while paint dries

    • June 23, 2016 at 2:20 pm

      Thank you Mary! Isn’t that the truth?! Paint drying – well might as well start another project! lol

  4. June 23, 2016 at 6:24 pm

    Ok, this is stunning! We have a rocking chair exactly like this & you’ve convinced me to paint it black. Yours looks gorgeous now!

    • June 23, 2016 at 6:34 pm

      Oh Meg thank you so much!! I was worried about the black paint but once it was all done I was sold!

  5. September 8, 2016 at 7:48 pm

    This is truly stunning in black. I had a bi-centennial I passed on to my son that looks just like yours.

  6. September 14, 2016 at 6:33 pm

    Amazing transformation, Tarah! I just “rescued” our plain-Jane brown desk with a coat of black and I love it. Thanks so much for linking up your rocker at Vintage Charm (hope it sells quickly!).

    • September 14, 2016 at 7:01 pm

      Thank you so much Diana! Its been a few months now and I haven’t tried to sell it yet… my husband keeps mentioning that that was in fact why I purchased it and painted it… I didn’t expect to have trouble letting it go!

  7. October 5, 2016 at 11:45 am

    It is stunning! Funny you sound so much like me! I always have some project to work and love that. My husband is always like we have so many projects to do, and I say yes I love projects!

    • October 5, 2016 at 3:17 pm

      lol isn’t that the truth?! Sometimes I think I’m nuts, but I really do need something to work on, its a good thing! πŸ™‚

  8. November 1, 2016 at 1:19 am

    I love that you painted it black! Stunning!

  9. November 1, 2016 at 5:43 pm

    I have a similar rocking chair that I bought when my son was born. I have thought about painting it but just haven’t done it yet. You are inspiring me to paint it.


    • November 1, 2016 at 6:55 pm

      I always feel a little bad when I reach for the paint but I think in this case it was totally the right choice!

  10. November 2, 2016 at 7:27 am

    Oh she’ll definitely sell Tarah, she’s gorgeous and you did an amazing job finishing her off. Very professional. Thanks again for sharing with us at the Sweet Inspiration party, I really enjoy getting a sneak peak into your transformation journey πŸ˜‰

    • November 2, 2016 at 2:27 pm

      Thank you Michelle, so far I haven’t had the heart to try and sell her yet but it is on my list of “to-dos”!

  11. November 3, 2016 at 1:56 pm

    What a beautiful difference! Thanks for sharing on the Pleasures of the NW’s DIY party!

  12. November 5, 2016 at 3:44 pm

    Congratulations! Your Rocking Chair is featured on this week’s DIY party!! Come by and grab a featured button tomorrow and thanks for sharing!

    • November 7, 2016 at 3:32 pm

      That’s amazing! Thank you so much Helen!

  13. November 7, 2016 at 1:12 am

    Stunning indeed! Thanks for sharing at Funtastic Friday!

  14. November 10, 2016 at 8:02 pm

    I have a rocking chair that looks very much like this. I had never thought of painting it black. All of our interior doors are painted black, so it would actually fit right in. thanks for the great idea!

    • November 10, 2016 at 9:47 pm

      Deborah, I painted all of my interior doors black too, love the look! Thanks for coming by!

  15. Jann Olson
    November 14, 2016 at 3:37 am

    I love the new look! Can you believe that I had a very similar rocker when my first child was born in 1973. They were all the rage back then. Sorry to say that I no longer have it. Thanks for sharing with SYC.

    • November 14, 2016 at 5:47 pm

      Oh what an awesome memory! Thank you for sharing with me Jann πŸ™‚

  16. November 15, 2016 at 8:05 pm

    I love the rocking chair, what a beautiful transformation!!

  17. November 16, 2016 at 1:06 pm

    Love the black color you used. Its such a great anchor color and timeless too!

  18. November 17, 2016 at 6:17 pm

    Oh I just love this! πŸ™‚

    I would love for you to share this with my Facebook Group for recipes, crafts, tips, and tricks:

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J!

  19. November 18, 2016 at 6:13 pm

    Your chair turned out so gorgeous! Thanks for sharing.

  20. November 21, 2016 at 11:22 pm

    The rocker is beautiful! I love the hydrangea addition. It says “home” to me. <3

    • November 22, 2016 at 3:47 pm

      Thank you Jamie, hydrangeas say the same thing to me too πŸ™‚

  21. November 22, 2016 at 7:02 pm

    That is just gorgeous! I love seeing something ugly at a yard sale and thinking of the potential. You certainly nailed it! #happynow

  22. November 24, 2016 at 3:26 am

    What a beautiful transformation! Thank you for sharing at Celebrate Your Story! Happy Thanksgiving!

  23. December 1, 2016 at 10:22 pm

    Tarah, my Mom had that exact same rocking chair! I remember it clearly because she asked me to make a cushion for the seat when she hurt her back. I totally love what you did with it xo

    • December 2, 2016 at 3:39 pm

      Thank you so much Carla, it really was such a lovely chair!

  24. December 4, 2016 at 4:22 pm

    I’m like you, a lot of my paint choices are from what is on hand, which is usually what I find for free at hazmat. It does simplify the decision making process.

    • December 5, 2016 at 3:58 pm

      Yup, sounds like me! But, you’re right, it does simplify the process a lot!

  25. December 7, 2016 at 1:24 am

    I love the way this turned out! I would not have chosen black but it was really a great choice here. Love it! Thanks for sharing at the Family Joy Blog Link Party this week!!

  26. December 8, 2016 at 9:07 pm

    I just love the way this turned out. I want to get one to paint for my sister who’s having a baby in a few weeks! Thanks for joining the Family Joy link party!

    • December 9, 2016 at 3:22 pm

      Samantha, that would be such a wonderful gift for your sister! Thanks for coming by!

  27. December 16, 2016 at 12:48 am

    Love how your rocker turned out! Thanks for sharing at the Inspiration Spotlight party! Pinned & shared.

  28. December 29, 2016 at 9:05 pm

    What a beautiful beautiful makeover. Featuring you when my link party opens up tonight! Thanks for sharing.

  29. January 13, 2017 at 8:09 pm

    Gorgeous chair. I love the makeover!

  30. January 17, 2017 at 11:27 am

    This is a stunning change and stark difference in the look brought about is super! Loved the colour and also the colours chosen!

  31. January 18, 2017 at 6:46 pm

    It never ceases to amaze me how a fresh coat of paint will completely transfer a dated piece – love it!

    • January 18, 2017 at 7:12 pm

      It is just amazing what a little paint can do! Thanks!

  32. April 12, 2017 at 4:52 pm

    Wonderful makeover Tarah! Black as a neutral sells really well and a great color choice for this piece, and perfect timing Porch rockers are a must in the south for those hot Summer afternoons! Thanks so much for sharing your project at Fridays Furniture Fix!

  33. April 21, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    I have an old rocking chair that needs updating – I love the black on yours!

    • April 22, 2017 at 8:51 pm

      Thanks Roseann! I just love these old rockers!

  34. Brandy
    May 21, 2017 at 3:21 am

    OMG! I bought the same, outdated 70s rocker, today at the Goodwill. I can’t wait to start my refurbishing!!! I’m tired of going furniture shopping and not finding my taste, in quality furniture. Not to mention the price of specialty items. So I figure $8 for the chair, sandpaper and paint, and we’ll see how it goes!! Excited to start!! Thanks for the inspiration!

    • May 22, 2017 at 3:22 pm

      Oh Brandy I am so excited for you!! Good luck!

  35. May 31, 2017 at 7:30 pm

    You did a wonderful job with that rocker. Very beautiful.

  36. May 31, 2017 at 11:56 pm

    The rocking chair turned out just fabulous. I expect it will sell. Everyone I have ever painted has sold. Can’t wait to see the other projects you have been working on.

  37. June 5, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    Tarah your makeovers are stunning, you can’t tell this rocking chair needed your TLC

  38. June 6, 2017 at 10:37 pm

    This chair will be so perfect for sitting out on a front porch. It reminds me of something from a movie set. Beautiful makeover, I love the striking black.

  39. Kathy A.
    July 4, 2017 at 1:31 am

    I still have my similar chair, dubbed, “the Baby Rocking Chair.” Started rocking my kids in utero as I love rockers! I’m 5’7″ tall so I wanted a chair with a high seat and rugged arms to push off from when holding a baby. Couldn’t imagine trying to get up out of a low Boston rocker! One baby was 8 years old and he would still climb into my lap in that chair when he had a boo-boo! Those babies are 33 and 34 years old now! It was also a good place for a good cry–don’t have to do that anymore! Wish I had a big enough front porch! Your makeover was great. Being a color fanatic, I would put a hot pink cushion in it!

    • July 5, 2017 at 2:57 pm

      Oh Kathy, thank you so much for sharing such wonderful memories with me! Rocking chairs are so iconic and such wonderful pieces for our home right now I have five of them! Three of them came from my passed on grandparents and another my aunt gave me and I just can’t part of with any of them πŸ™‚

  40. August 11, 2017 at 10:58 am

    Looks GREAT! Amazing what paint can do πŸ™‚

    Would love if you’d join us at Reader Tip Tuesday:
    It’s open all week & growing!

    Hope to see your makeover rocker at the party…

  41. Gentle Joy Homemaker
    August 11, 2017 at 12:29 pm

    It is surprising how much the black paint suits the chair…. much more than the original.

  42. August 28, 2017 at 4:09 pm

    Just saw this on the Happiness is Homemade link party. Great job. I would have seen this rocker and totally passed it up. Turned out gorgeous!

  43. September 6, 2017 at 12:31 pm

    It’s amazing how different the rocker looks with black paint – much more up to date! Thanks for sharing at Reader Tip Tuesday – hope to see you at this week’s party:

  44. October 16, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    What a huge difference, you wouldn’t even think it was the same chair, I love it! Thanks for sharing this with us on the Homestead Blog Hop. πŸ™‚

  45. Kathy A
    January 20, 2018 at 8:33 pm

    This is the kind of chair I wanted (and got) for a baby rocking chair. I started rocking in it with kids in utero; when Patrick was 8, he still fit in my lap and wanted a rocking when he had a boo-boo! He’s 34 now! The seat is higher than a Boston rocker and the arms are rugged so you can push off with one hand and a baby in the other! Can’t do that in those bentwood rockers with cane seats! It’s also man-sized so gramp can use it, too! I can’t imagine any other rocker to use with a baby; it wasn’t too shabby for a feel-sorry-for-yourself-cry, either!

    • January 22, 2018 at 4:38 pm

      Kathy, I loved it when I first saw it because it was “man sized” so many older solid wood rockers that you run into at thrift stores etc are just TINY. This one was heavy and solid and could hold a full sized guy! I have four other rockers (I’m hoarding rocking chairs, its fine.) but this is literally the only one that can hold a regular guy so I keep it in my living room. Lovely to hear your story, thank you for sharing with me! What awesome memories!

  46. February 5, 2018 at 6:03 pm

    I love the look! Well done!

  47. February 7, 2018 at 7:50 am

    So pretty! I love the black! #DreamTeam

  48. February 7, 2018 at 12:34 pm

    Your rocker truly is a stunner. I am a sucker for black painted furniture. I wish you all the success in the world with your furniture refinishing business!

  49. February 7, 2018 at 5:36 pm

    The rocking chair looks beautiful! πŸ™‚

  50. February 7, 2018 at 7:25 pm

    Tarah, that is such a beautiful rocker. I can’t wait to find me one like it!

  51. February 9, 2018 at 6:04 pm

    It looks so much better now, you did a great job. Thank you for sharing at The Really Crafty Link Party. Pinned!

  52. February 11, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    Good work! It looks amazing! Thanks for joining in with #ThatFridayLinky

  53. February 12, 2018 at 8:06 am

    Gorgeous chair, I love it painted! #thatfridaylinky

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