A beautiful finish is all about proper preparation, a suitable workspace and the right products. We asked Gary Hakkinen, a painting veteran of 40-plus years, to show us his best practices for perfection. Here are a few of his favorite staining, sanding and finishing tips to help you create rich, silky-smooth trim.
Sand Wood for Even Finishes
The trim you bought may look perfect, but it likely has imperfections from machining that won't show up until you stain it. Sand every contour and flat area in the direction of the grain with a combination of medium-grit sanding sponges and pads. When necessary, fold 120-grit paper to get into tight cracks.