How To Paint Wardrobe Doors: Designers Guide

How To Paint Wardrobe Doors Designers Guide

We all have that old piece of furniture standing in our living room that has all the potential but just needs that little bit of love and attention. Wardrobes are one such item. They have so many uses, from kitchen pantries to TV cabinets, and they also make for useful hanging space in the bedroom. 

But, as with any interior piece of furniture, we never want them to look like they’ve reached the end of their life span, especially if they’re a feature piece like many wardrobes are. If you have a wardrobe you simply cannot let go of and want to integrate it into your living space, check out this guide on how to paint wardrobe doors. 

Tools and materials you’ll need

Before you spend a lovely Sunday afternoon tackling your latest DIY upcycling project, you’ll need to make sure you have everything you need for painting. Wardrobe doors may require some extra care, depending on how old they are and what they’re made of, so use this list of items and check it off before you start. 

  • Sander or some elbow grease 😉
  • Fine sandpaper
  • Cleaning solution
  • Sponge 
  • Large surface area paint brush
  • Smaller paint brush
  • Wood-specific primer 
  • Colour paint of your choice

After you’ve got all the necessary items, you should be ready to start on your DIY wardrobe project! 

Tools and materials you'll need

Painting wardrobe doors: Step-by-step guide

Painting wardrobe doors involves following a systematic process as this will give you the best result and leave your furniture looking fabulous. Here’s a simple step-by-step for you to follow when you’re painting your wardrobe. Remember, this is supposed to be fun, so enjoy every minute and let your creativity run wild.  

Sanding your wardrobe

The best place to start when painting wardrobe doors is with sanding. Sanding takes away any debris that may cause uneven surfaces and helps create a blank canvas for your hard work. 

If you’re using an electric sander, make sure it’s in a gentle setting. Don’t push too hard on the wood, as this will cause the door to become uneven and leave odd marks all over it. Also, make sure you use fine sandpaper to prevent any damage and scratches to the door’s surface. 

If you feel like you’ve skipped arm day this week and want to take the manual approach, you may want to invest in a sand pad. These are easier to handle and less harsh on your fingers. That being said, wearing gloves is also a great idea. 

Sanding your wardrobe

Cleaning your wardrobe

Sanding your wardrobe doors should have picked up most of the debris, but giving your wardrobe doors a clean will give it that extra shine in the finished product. Use a gentle cleaning solution that’s appropriate for the type of wood your wardrobe is made of. 

Sugar soap generally works well for most wood types, but the last thing you want is to spoil the original woodwork. Don’t use excessive water as this may cause warping. 

Once it’s all soaped down, the wardrobe doors with a dry cloth and leave it to air until dry. Then, the fun begins. 

Wardrobe priming

Find a wood primer that suits the wood you’re working with. Priming before painting wardrobe doors will make the colour you choose pop when you’re finished. Make sure you use a large paintbrush to cover the entire surface of the wardrobe door. You can always find a smaller one for other nooks and crannies. Make sure you wash these brushes for the actual paint job. If necessary, give your wardrobe doors another coat of primer for extra care. Once you’re satisfied, leave it to dry completely. 

Wardrobe priming

And finally, painting

Take your time when selecting the colour of your wardrobe. There are many ways to do this. Colours that match the overall solar scheme of your living space are always a safe bet. But if you want to be bold and make the wardrobe a feature piece, bright colours are a wonderful way to go, so don’t be shy! 

Use the large paint brush to cover most of the surface area with your chosen paint. Make sure you cover the whole thing to avoid any holes in the paintwork. Again, use the smaller brush to get into any spaces you may not be able to with the larger one. 

After you’ve painted the first coat and let it dry, take a step back and assess whether it needs a second lick of paint. It’s often a good idea to make the colour really stand out. 

Wait for the whole unit to dry before moving it into place. Then – enjoy your newly refurbished masterpiece! 


Painting an old wardrobe’s doors is a great way to save some cash, especially if you have quality furniture lying around that you don’t want to get rid of. Old furniture can last ages with the love and attention they require, and they’re the perfect DIY project for weekend activities. 

With the right tools, materials, and, of course, the perfect paint colour, you can do wonders to an old piece simply by painting wardrobe doors! Make sure you follow the steps laid out exactly, as this will give you a piece of furniture you’ll fall in love with all over again. 

Hopefully, this guide on how to paint wardrobe doors has given you the inspiration you need to restore your favourite piece to its former glory. Happy painting!