High Gloss Furniture: Yay or Nay?


I’m in the process of working with a friend on her bathroom redo, and she’s going for a whole new look, which involves a high gloss, lacquered vanity, that yours truly will be painting.  ((Insert freak out here))  I say freak out, only because high gloss items are out of the norm for me, and high gloss also means that you can see every. imperfection.  So making sure your surface is dust, dirt and lint-free is critical.  But when it’s done right, it’s … amazing.

Black Lacquer Dresser

We started in one direction, but have turned to another based upon some of the selections that have been made.  All good, all fun.  Black lacquer has always been part of the plan though.  Let’s take a peek at the room now, and then we’ll get to the plan.

Bathroom Before

And now for the fun stuff.  The vanity – it’s just crying to be lacquered, don’t you think?  The top will be different than this one – more in line with a clean white stone.

Bamboo Vanity

Then came the mirror – which really is where the direction changed.

Pagoda Mirror

Originally, we were going to go with an emerald green for the paint color, based upon an inspiration photo that she showed me.  But I’m loving the direction it’s going now.  The mirror inspired this gorgeous wallpaper choice – not sure if it’s going to be an accent wall, with the other walls painted a shade of gray, but either way, I think it’s going to look great.

Pagoda Wallpaper

Which brings me back to my original question – how do you feel about lacquered finishes?  I think many of us tend to think of lacquer done badly – like 80’s lacquered furniture.

So try to shake that stigma, and think about how much more refined it is now.  I have been contemplating painting some furniture pieces in a high gloss lacquer, but honestly, I don’t know if people in my neck of the woods are ready for it.  I love it, and I have seen some amazing pieces, but I’m wondering if I would need to open an Etsy store in order to actually sell it.  Maybe I should just bite the bullet and give it a try.  Who knows? Maybe I’m underestimating people near me.  Or perhaps, it’s just about marketing your wares in the right places, yes?

You can’t argue that it’s unsophisticated.

And lacquered doors – it doesn’t get any classier.

I can’t even…  I don’t even care what it looks like inside – the curb appeal is perfection.

You can always go with a blue lacquer.

Would you be daring enough to go high gloss with a piece of furniture in your home?  This one definitely brings in some high drama.  And if you’re looking for tips on getting a glossy finish – check out this post from Painted.  I think I will be using it as my guide.

High Gloss Pink Dresser

What do you think of high gloss finishes?  I think in looking at them more closely, if they’re done right, they’re fantastic.  That’s the key to the kingdom here.  I’ll be sure to take you along as I venture into some high gloss finishes!



  • Reply
    March 29, 2017 at 1:11 pm

    High gloss painted finishes are beautiful, but I would think there’s a smaller market for them. We see so much farmhouse and industrial style, but high gloss finish is much more formal. I certainly couldn’t use it in my rustic lake cabin!

  • Reply
    Lizabeth Lopez
    March 29, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    Love it! I would totally stalk you if you had an Etsy’s site.

  • Reply
    March 29, 2017 at 1:25 pm

    I love the glossy finish! It makes the furniture piece look high end. I’m thinking about painting the dated half table in my foyer in a glossy finish. Thinking that would bring it back to life. Now if I could just decide upon a color! Cant wait to see how the vanity turns out! I know it will be gorgeous. Love the plan for the bathroom. I always look forward to seeing your finished products. You got some skills girl!

  • Reply
    Antoinette de Janasz Baxter
    March 29, 2017 at 1:36 pm

    High gloss yay!

  • Reply
    March 29, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    I love the look of high gloss, but don’t like the dust that shows easily on glossy surfaces. I’ve always wondered how it holds up. We had 2 active boys (and now 2 grandchildren) and I can’t imagine that type of finish standing up to Matchbox cars, Transformer battles, wayward Nerf darts, etc. Does it chip easily? Is it tougher than it looks?

  • Reply
    March 29, 2017 at 7:32 pm

    I guess you can say, as for me, it’s all depends upon what it is. There are something’s I love flat, whereas others, I love it high gloss. Your pieces are beautiful.

  • Reply
    March 30, 2017 at 11:40 pm

    Nothing goes together like high gloss lacquer and faux bamboo! So I say Yay and double Yay! I recently bought a vintage faux bamboo dining table and chairs and my husband put a high gloss white enamel finish on it. It has the look of lacquer put not as labor intensive.

    Lacquer is highly toxic and is normally done in a professional paint booth with proper ventilation and masks. I have watched it being done and the paint is applied very thinly in many steps. Lacquer will chip as well so that is one drawback but it looks stunning.

  • Reply
    Renette Hier
    May 2, 2017 at 12:55 am

    Where on earth is that beautiful vanity from?

    • Reply
      May 2, 2017 at 9:42 pm

      I believe it was a score from Ballard Outlet! A beauty!

  • Reply
    Kim Lista
    April 11, 2020 at 9:08 am

    I too am obsessed with high gloss furniture. Did you try it? Would love to chat more with you about it. I have finished a few pieces, and I also followed Kayla Payne’s classes. I think I couldn’t have done it without taking her class.

    • Reply
      April 15, 2020 at 11:46 am

      I did a high gloss vanity for a customer, but that was about it. I love the look of high gloss, but minimizing dust is a serious challenge! Kayla is a pro when it comes to high gloss!

  • Reply
    March 5, 2022 at 8:12 am

    I always loved furniture in high gloss finished. I am thinking of having my front door painted with high gloss but with a roller and brush when needed. Would you recommend the best roller/brush that would leave strokes less visible? Thanks. Renata

    • Reply
      March 6, 2022 at 2:37 pm

      I don’t do much with high gloss myself – depends on the type of paint. I would spray high gloss if doing it myself, as that would give the best look.

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