I spent yesterday stripping. It's not the most glamorous part of my job... But a girls got to make a living :) I've attempted to walk several people through the stripping process over the past few weeks and they both reported back that it was one of the worst experiences of their lives… So I thought I'd make a quick picture tutorial to help you out! :) I love Citrastrip, it's my go to stripper. It's a very effective without any harsh fumes.
-3" Paint Brush (not a nice one, natural hair is better than synthetic)
-Cling Wrap (the good kind)
-Plastic Disposable Bowl
Step 1: Block off your workspace from the kiddos and animals. Choose a place that your project can sit for 8 hours. Lay a tarp down and set your project on top. Gather your supplies and put on your gloves.
Step 2: Shake your CitraStrip well and pour some into your bowl. Working in small sections applying a heavy layer with your brush in all different directions (cross hatching). Grab your cling wrap and begin to carefully cover the CitraStrip, flattening it out for a snug, air pocket free fit. Wrap the area completely and then rub the cling wrap to ensure no air gets trapped in. Continue in small sections applying and covering.
Important: you want your stripped to stay wet, so work in small sections.
Step 3: Wait! The instructions say 30 minutes to 24 hours. I think 3-4 hours is just right. Start your timer!
Step 4: Start by removing only one section of cling wrap at a time in the order they were applied (so it doesn't dry out). At this point the paint/poly should fall off like butter as you remove the cling wrap. Have your scraper handy and softly and gently loosen and remove the nasty. Continue section by section until you've completed the piece.
Cleaning: At this point your piece is sort of sticky and nasty. Grab your mineral spirits and a rag and start cleaning the piece from top to bottom. It's VERY important that you get every single bit of stripper off so you'll make a quick initial pass at cleaning and then a very thorough pass and then another quick pass. All done!! Proceed with your project. This table took about 2 hours to strip and it was pretty painless :)