About Us

The History

The first batch of Deft Brushing Lacquer was created in 1953 in a Los Angeles paint store owned by Bill and Cy Desmond. Back then, typical finishes were shellacs and alkyd varnishes that dried slowly and turned amber, so Deft's superior brushable formula was met with instant praise. Professionals and enthusiasts alike appreciated the lacquer's forgiving nature and resistance to brush marks as well as its clear finish and fast dry.

Originally labeled "Deft Wood Finish" the lacquer name was changed to "Clear Wood Finish", and other products were added to the line.

Today the Deft line includes wood stains, danish oils, polyurethanes and water-base finishes.

Deft Today

Bill Desmond's children, Tony and Mary Ann Desmond lead Deft today, upholding the tradition of quality that has become our hallmark. Working from our headquarters in Irvine, CA and our additional plant in Alliance, OH, Deft's family of 140 employees is dedicated to producing finishes and coatings of the highest quality.

The Deft product line has grown into a full range of easy-to-use interior and exterior clear finishes and wood stains, as well as the finest commercial and military specification primers and coatings available.

We are cognizant of our responsibility to the environment, our community, our nation, and our planet. It is our mission to help customers save time and effort with fast and safe, and top-quality wood finishing products.