How To Do Wood Staining
We show you here how to do wood staining the easy way. Stained timber is a way of changing the wood’s color without sacrificing the character of the grain and knots. This can be done discreetly using wood tones to improve the natural shade or imitate a more expensive timber.
Or you can completely transform the appearance of the wood with a whole spectrum of un-wood-like rainbow colors. Brilliant patterns and motifs can be developed from a widely varied palette of colors to pick out molded details in carved wood and cheer up timber.
In contrast, modern pastel, semi-translucent, grain-displaying paints mimic the soft, faded appeal and weathered finish of old country cottage joinery and furniture.
By reproducing the muted colors and distressed finish of genuinely matured rustic features, they can blend new timber articles with old or bring recently stripped older pieces back to life. The wood staining effect works equally well on floorboards and paneling giving the timber an instantly seasoned quality and the room a peaceful atmosphere.
Objects That You Can Use For Staining
Wooden furniture responds well to wood staining, either to restore its original hue or mellow new pieces to blend in with older ones. Old pine pieces that have been stripped can often look slightly grey and bleached; a coat or two of a golden stain re-develops its former warmth.
For pine, avoid red tones of stain, like mahogany, which are better for close-grained woods. Antique pine tones are available, but test them first. If necessary, mix different tones until you achieve the desired effect.
Skirtings and doors. Wood staining rather than painting woodwork around the house makes a pleasant change, presenting a more natural or delicate look than conventional gloss and eggshell finishes. Slightly subdued, worn shades integrate beautifully with muted pastels and sheer fabrics, creating a soft focus in the room.
Timber floorboards or paneling offer a broad surface for color treatment. Decorating a wooden floor is infinitely cheaper than laying carpet or tiles. Already divided into parallel strips, the boards can be stained in stripes, panels, zigzags or mosaics of different shades.
Staining a checkerboard layout simulates the crisp, clean lines of a tiled floor very realistically. Mark out the grid carefully on the floor before you start working in the stains, using masking tape to define the margins. As an extra precaution to prevent the stain bleeding from one area to another, score the borders of the pattern elements lightly with a sharp knife.
Plain wooden items around the house gain individuality when stained, particularly if you add a special pattern or motif of your own for extra distinction. In the kitchen a bread bin or paper roll dispenser can be picked out in a rustic stain. In the bathroom, towel rails and accessories retain a naturally grained appearance while adopting a color that ties in with the rest of the design scheme.
Types of Stain
Stains for wood fall into two main types: those, usually put on with a cloth, that sink into the wood but give no surface protection, and those incorporated in a varnish so that color and protection are imparted at the same time.
Stain on its own comes in a range of wood and primary colors. They can be water or oil-based. Many stains tend to soak in quickly which can make it difficult to apply evenly, especially with a brush. If you brush on the dye, more tends to soak into the wood where you first touch it with the bristles. When the wood does take up the stain unevenly the surface acquires an interesting blotchy, textured feel which can be appealing in its own right.
A clean, lint-free cloth often proves a more satisfactory means of applying a smooth coat of stain. The pad absorbs the runny stain and distributes it evenly, especially into the crevices of carved and turned wood. Alternatively, a sponge paint pad is a good way of getting consistent cover, except in tight corners.
The wood itself has to be protected by wax polish, oil or clear varnish after using this type of stain. When you prepare the wood thoroughly in the first place and apply several coats of varnish over the stained timbers, the finish should be robust enough to withstand wear-and-tear for many years.
This paint displays the grain like a stain, allowing the natural beauty of the timber to show through, but instead of wood tones it comes in a range of pale pastel colors. A combination of chalky green, blue and white produces a cool, refreshing impression; misty pink and peach add a warmer, comforting touch.
The paint is easy to apply and protects woodwork with a tough, low-sheen coating that is quick to clean and resistant to damage. Brush it on evenly in the direction of the grain and leave to dry for at least six hours before re-applying; two coats are recommended. For good results, this paint needs to be applied to a new light-colored or stripped wood in which a strong fingerprint of the grain is evident.
Special micro-porous sealers or stains must be used on external woodwork.
Applying wood stains
Whatever type of stain you decide to use it is important to do a test first on an inconspicuous spot to check the color. The result depends on the color and grain of the original wood and how much of the stain it absorbs.
Remember also that further coats of stain will deepen the color. So let the first coat be absorbed and test a smaller area with another coat on top. You can mix stain colors of the same type to achieve the shade you prefer.
You should also test the effect of the final finish you intend to use over the stain; most waxes and oils tend to darken surfaces while even clear varnish contributes a yellowish hue.
Home Depot have a video showing you “How to Stain Wood”
Reference: The Country Look—Decor & Crafts