I love white. I hate white. I love white. I hate white.
White paint has terrible coverage. Antique whites, creams, tans - different story. WHITE WHITE - typically a nightmare.
If you have ever painted with even a good coverage paint in white - you know, its just not the same. Now, if you are super unlucky, you get bleed through and everything that can go wrong DOES go wrong when you are painting with WHITE.
I have a few rules that I typically don't follow and then REGRET.
Rule #1) I 'prime' with a light grey acrylic paint first. Sometimes with 2 coats. This way I am not covering a dark wood with WHITE and if there is going to be bleed through I will see it in this step.
Rule #2) IF there was bleed through in the first step...SEAL your piece BEFORE painting white. This will help lock it all in and you shouldn't have further bleedthrough unless of course your sealer reacts with the tanning acids in your furniture.
Sealer Tip#1) If your sealer has reacted with your furniture, don't be alarmed. It is still just bleedthrough. It can present as an allover discoloration OR as distinct spots. In either event, it is a total bummer because you thought you were done. Luckily, it is now sealed in. Do another coat of paint and when you reseal it should be good.
Of course- you should always test your products.
Modern Masters sealer, for example, doesn't yellow on General Finishes paints so I know if it yellows that it is the furniture and that it would have happened with any water based sealers. Oil based sealers will turn yellow and discolor over time....there is no escaping it. Waterbased sealers will yellow instantly if there is a problem and once addressed will not yellow over time...which is what I prefer if I have to pick my battle :)
I have more on primer and when I use it, here.
I am using a lot of white lately and got lazy and didn't follow my own rules. NEVER. AGAIN. BIG MISTAKE. I think I might be on the 274th coat of paint.
What painting rules do you have for yourself??