How to paint metal pieces on chairs and giving a new life to the old.


I have 1980's (1990's) upholstered dining chairs that have gold accented legs and arms. How should I paint these parts without it chipping? Does anyone have pictures to share of refurbishing these kinds of chairs? The set is in good condition but needs a makeover. Thanks!

q how to paint metal pieces on chairs and giving a new life to the old
  17 answers
  • GrandmasHouseDIY GrandmasHouseDIY on Jun 16, 2020

    My mom has those exact chairs lol - I would think you could spray paint that gold just like any kind of gold hardware. Rustoleum makes a great selection of hardware spray paints that work great. I spray painted all of the hardware (towel bar, paper bar, robe hook, door knob and even the light fixture) in a bathroom using Rustoleum's bronze hardware spray paint and it all still looks great several years later.

  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Jun 16, 2020

    Hello. Spray paint can be your best friend. The new formulations with paint and primer are particularly useful I like the Rustoleum universal line that comes in both regular colors and metallics.

    My photograph below shows an exterior furniture application- I can comment at this two-piece patio swivel chair is from the 1980s is heavy duty steel set —furniture that you can’t really find nowadays in this quality. It was originally a creamy white color was painted gray to match the table that I purchased in the mid-1990s. Paint totally refurbished the chairs new slings were purchased and the patio set was cohesively matched.

    In your situation if the wooden arm rest can be removed that’ll help your restoration and paint application if you should choose to do that. Hope this helps best wishes with your renovation.

  • Em Em on Jun 16, 2020

    From the look of the side of the chair you can remove the cloth part with screw driver then put back after you have painted. The Rustoleum 2X coverage has been really great for my projects. It has two times the coverage as the old spray paint.

  • Use spray paint intended for use on metal.

  • Beth Beth on Jun 16, 2020

    I just answered above, but I'll add that the paint I linked to is not spray paint. I prefer to paint with a brush when possible because spray paint can be hard to control.

    I've used this, and it works well, but you will get a hammered metal finish:

    You can also get it at Home Depot or most other home improvement stores.

  • Recreated Designs Recreated Designs on Jun 16, 2020

    Hi Allison, there are some great metal paints that you can use a brush with if you don't want to spray paint (and paints that will stick even to metal like General Finishes and Annie Sloan) if you want a different look. Rustoleum makes a great paint that is made to adhere to metal and comes in lots of beautiful colours. If you use a brush to apply it you won't have to be as worried about the overspray. Good luck with your project. For the fabric you can either paint it or recover it. It looks like there are screws for the arms so I am guessing that the chairs can be disassembled. This will make it much easier to paint the metal and recover the seats. Good luck with your projects! We'd love to see them when they are done.

  • Robyn Garner Robyn Garner on Jun 16, 2020

    Gold accents are actually big in style right now. Were they mine, I would sand down the wood and repaint it - you could go Glam and paint black. Reupholster definitely!!! Take a look at Hollywood Regency style things.

    If you still want to paint the metal, tape off everything else extremely well. Lightly sand to roughen up the surface so the paint sticks. Though they say no primer is needed, I've had much better results priming with Rustoleum spray primer. A couple of very light coats. Then when completely cured, spray again in light coats with your chosen color from Rustoleum. They even have chalk paint in spray! Then, seal with poly - if you use chalk paint, use a matte poly sealer to retain that chalky look.

  • Betsy Betsy on Jun 16, 2020

    Hi Allison: I think that snce the finish is slick, the paint either won't stick or will peel off. What you might try to do is just clean it off with a magic eraser and some warm water. There should be screws so that you can take the wood off and maybe take the entire metal pieces off so that you can really get to them to clean. However, if you are certain you want to paint, this site should be a great help. Still, take the chair apart :)

    Good luck

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Jun 17, 2020

    RustOleum has some great metal paint. Scuff with steel wool, clean with denatured alcohol, then paint. Of course, you will have to cover the chairs so they aren't messed up. You might also consider adding a glaze to give the bright gold an antique look.

  • Annie Annie on Jun 17, 2020

    Hi, You will have to take chair apart. Wash all the metal to make sure it is clean. Let it dry well and perhaps bring it inside to warm up prior to painting. We have painted several items with "Hammered" look paint. They have several colors. Heres a link to a site and this can be purchased in all hardware stores.

  • William William on Jun 17, 2020

    Clean and lightly scuff the metal with a green kitchen scrubby. Use Rustoleum 2X spray paint. If you can remove the back, seat, and armrests would be easier to paint.

  • Holly Lengner - Lost Mom Holly Lengner - Lost Mom on Jun 18, 2020

    I agree that spray paint will be the best option for your chairs.

  • E E on Jun 21, 2020

    I have painted metal with spray paint. I sanded the metal, used a primer, then painted. It held up very well but of course it will chip with dings and bumps .

  • Joy Elizabeth Joy Elizabeth on Jun 21, 2020

    The best way to paint metal so it lasts is spray paint. it is available in any finish you can imagine. Hopefully the chairs disassemble easily enough to make it a simple process!

  • Homeroad Homeroad on Jun 22, 2020

    If you have to paint the metal, (which maybe you don't) I would use a chalk based paint which sticks to metal and then seal it. Maybe you could just reupholster it and paint the wood.

  • Sharon Sharon on Dec 09, 2020

    remove seat and back cushions, rub metal with 0000 steel wool and use Rustoleum paint for metal spray paint outside.