Unfinished furniture stores are located by the roadside in many rural areas. Some craft stores even sell small pieces of unfinished furniture. It is cheaper to buy this and finish it yourself and doing so allows you to create a unique look. The steps below enable you to create pieces that have the character and beauty of antiques.
You will need:
• Tack cloth
• Tung oil finish
• Felt-tip pen
• Black spray paint
• Scrap wood
• Golden pecan or golden oak stain
• Paint stirrer
• 4 soft cloths
• Staining pad
• Paste wax
• Extra-fine steel wool
Step 1: Soften the appearance of the furniture by slightly rounding sharp corners and blunting edges using the sandpaper and sanding block or palm sander. Use the sandpaper to create small areas of wear around hardware and on the top of the door, if the piece has these. Wipe off sanding dust with the tack cloth.
Step 2: By adding distressing marks, the piece looks older. Use the felt-tip pen to draw a pattern indicative of termite holes near the end or edge of a board on the piece. Create holes in this pattern with the drill and drill bit. To give the area a more natural look, slightly vary the hole angles. Lightly sand the holes to remove wood burrs.
Step 3: Use the rough bottom or edge of a pan, flowerpot, or other heavy object to create scuffs and dents. Using multiple objects keeps the marks from appearing too uniform. Create scratches by dragging a screwdriver, pliers, or keys across the boards.
Step 4: Create a faux water ring. Spray the bottom of a can with black spray pain and create an imprint on a wood board on top of the piece using part of the can lip. Practice on the scrap wood first to perfect the technique.
Step 5: The golden pecan or golden oak color stain creates the mellowed look that results from age and sun exposure. Use the tack cloth to wipe off dust. Thoroughly stir the stain and apply it using a soft cloth or staining pad. Wait three minutes and wipe off any excess stain with another soft cloth. Let the stain dry overnight.
Step 6: Varnishes provide a glossy finish but a tung-oil finish makes the wood look like an antique. Rub this oil into the wood using a soft cloth and allow it to dry overnight.
Step 7: Use the steel wood to rub one coat of paste wax onto the wood. Wait until the wax begins to harden (about 5 minutes) and then use a soft cloth to buff the finish to achieve a satin sheen.