Lacquer Finish

When it comes to most of our furniture, we apply oil-based lacquer by spraying 3 - 4 coats, with sanding between each coat to create a near-flawless finish. We use a satin, low-sheen finish by default. We find this low sheen looks the best on real, solid wood furniture and is easier to keep clean and smudge free than higher gloss finishes.

Why you'll love it

Oil-based lacquer is a great finish for solid wood furniture for three main reasons:

  • It's hard
  • It's durable
  • It's scratch resistant (though not scratch proof)

Dining room tables take a beating, especially with younger kids. We eat, play, and do homework all around the table, so you need something that stands up to the test. Lacquer is what you need.

Here a few more things you'll love about oil-based lacquer:

  • You don't have to use coasters. You can leave a glass of ice water on the table in the summer, and the condensation won't leave a water ring.
  • Spills wipe right up. Some finishes used on less durable tables would need to be stripped if you spilled something like kool-aid on them.
  • The oil-based lacquer doesn't need to be reapplied and won't dry out over time like some oil finishes.

Cautions to be aware of

Despite the durability of lacquer, there are still a few things you'll want to avoid:

  • If something is too hot to hold, you'll want to put down a hot pad or trivet. Lacquer is tough but it's not stone.
  • You can damage your top if you spill something chemically abrasive on it like fingernail polish remover.
  • You also don't want to use hard chemicals to clean your table, as that may wear down the finish over the years.

Water-based poly & our barnwood finish

Our barnwood finish is our finish option that uses a water-based polyurethane. We can't achieve the barnwood effect/color while using an oil-based lacquer.

While still durable, water-based poly is a little more delicate. Coasters are recommended, and spills/liquids should be wiped up as soon as possible.


We recommend a wet rag or a wet soapy rag for cleaning, but you can also use any cleaning product specifically intended for wood surfaces.