Step 1: sand your piece.
I like to use an electric sander, because it takes much less effort than regular sand paper.
***make sure all hardware is off before sanding***
Step 2: prime your piece.
I like krylon spray paint primer. It is awesome! And not expensive :) make sure the primer dries completely before moving on**
Step 3: paint your piece.
I like Valspar and Krylon spray paints. They are of great quality and less than $4 per can. This desk and the chair took 4 cans or Valspar.
Step 4: protect your piece.
Once paint is COMPLETELY dry and looks even, coat it with a satin finish clear coat. Again, I like Krylon. This will protect you from color bleed and your piece from scratching the color.
See, easy! Let's see what you painted.