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Free Ultimate Furniture Painting Guide

All about Bleed-throughs and Primers when Painting White Furniture

If you are considering painting a piece of furniture or kitchen cabinets ... watch this first so you don't hate yourself later... * This post may contain affiliate links. I could make a commission at no charge to you if you purchase my recommended products. Please read my disclosure here and my privacy policy here.

Wood Tannins

Wood has tannins that draw forward when you add a water-based sealer. It comes up pink/orange/reddish color. You need to PREP, especially if you're painting from dark to light. Look at what happened when I added a sealer OVER my white chalk-type paint... Gross! It's yellow and dingy and only a matter of time before it shows up everywhere

All in One Paint

Fluff DBP


I mentioned that on the right drawer I used Dixie Belle's All in One Paint. It's a great paint line. You don't need a sealer, but you're NOT going to get good coverage going from dark to light unless you use a primer. The All in One whites NEED a primer. So my solution for painting most projects is to use shellac...


My go-to shellac is the Zinnser clear...I would normally coat the entire dresser in shellac and then I can use my all in one or chalk paint (with sealer)... but since I am painting white I need to block color too.

Choose shellac-based Primer

I do normally use the Zinsser primer... but in this case it won't work because it is water-based!!!! So I found a product that saves a step!!! I recommend using shellac-based Zinsser Bin Primer (Which you can purchase HERE.) This will block color AND bleed-throughs because it is alcohol-based. I only need this when I am painting WHITE. I would NOT need this if I were painting the dresser black and wanted to distress it. Then the white would show up! Normally I would first add shellac, then add my water-based primer then paint.. But this product takes that step out with a 2-for-1 when painting white furniture.

My CliffsNotes

Clear Shellac--> Blocks Tannins Shellac-Based Primer --> Color Block and Block Tannins (Dark Kitchen Cabinets, Dark furniture, etc.) I hope this helps you paint your next piece of furniture.

Furniture Painting Basics

If you are a beginner painter....and would like to participate in my upcoming LIVE ONLINE beginner is available right now!  You can add that to cart and purchase right here!  I'd love to introduce you to the world of furniture painting!!!!


The products listed here are exactly what I used for this tutorial!  Dixie Belle Paint company offers amazing products that will make all of your projects successful no matter what your skill level!

If you would like to paint your own furniture ....but lack confidence with where to start....I offer furniture design consultation! Contact me here and we can get you started on your next project! Next week I'm painting something super cool!! If you'd like to get more of painting tips in your inbox -- sign up to get my emails here. (And make sure you check your promotions folder, and drag it into the inbox folder if you're a gmail user so you won't miss it!) See you next week! XOXO, Tracey

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How to Paint White Furniture without bleed-throughs and wood tannins by Tracey's Fancy | How to paint Furniture | White Painted Furuniture | When to Prime and Prep Furniture | Shellac + Priming
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