This is a sponsored post by Minwax®.
With a new year starting, I thought it was a great time to implement some fresh skills I’ve learned and I thought I’d share them with you!
Let’s start with the basics- there are 2 types of stain for your DIY projects:
APPLYING THE STAIN
- TOOLS : using the correct tools is key.
- Oil based vs. water based
- there’s a variety of choices of colors between water based or oil based stains.
- Oil based products give you a longer working time, while water based products dry quicker.
- Water based products need to be used with synthetic fiber brushes. If you use a natural bristle brush, bristles will soak up the water and the brush will expand and lose its shape.
- If you use oil based products, you can use a brush with natural fibers or a foam brush.
- Never shake the stain! Shaking will cause bubbles and can give you an uneven finish. Stir your stain people!
- Use a pre-stain before staining. The pre-stain will help prevent streaks and blotches by evening out the absorption of the stain.
- Go with the grain when applying the stain. Wipe off the excess stain after your first coat.
FINISHING THE WOOD
- Finish Coat: a finish coat is important – it will protect your wood from wear & tear, and lock the stain in and make it even more vibrant. Kinda like a clear top coat on your nail polish.
- Top coats come in a variety of finishes – including satin or matte in case the high gloss is not your style.
- Polyurethane (which is oil based) will amber, or yellow, over time. Polycrylic (which is water based) will always be clear and will not yellow.
- You’ll have a longer working time with polyurethane than polycrylic. If have a small project or can work quickly, then go with the water based polycrylic.
- Let your stain dry overnight before applying your top coat.
- Synthetic brushes = water based products.
- Natural brushes = oil based products.
- Do one thin coat, wait overnight then sand lightly with a fine sandpaper. remove the dust created by the sanding and reapply the finish.
- Repeat this process at least one more time before you can officially be finished.
How do I clean up? I wrap the brushes in plastic wrap and throw them in the freezer. News flash – that’s not a good idea. Take the extra 5 minutes and thoroughly wash your brush out after every use.
- Water based products can be cleaned with soap and water.
- Oil based products will require mineral spirits clean up.Hold your brush down while cleaning otherwise so that the stain doesn’t build up near the base of the brush and ruin the shape of your bristles.
MY DIY PROJECT
After learning all these tips and tricks from the experts at Minwax, I decided it was time to take on a little project of my own.
This pathetic little desk I plucked from the trash…went from drab to fab in no time with a little help from minwax stain.
I lightly sanded the top of the table because it was a bit of a mess and looked like it had been painted in a previous life, so I was not starting with a raw piece of wood. That makes this little project slightly different than your average staining project.
The previous painting on the top prevented it from becoming a “finely finished” table top. But, I’m fine with that, because I like a piece with a little age and story to it.
I wanted the minwax stain to add an aged appearance to the desktop, and it worked perfectly.
The minwax stain darkened the table top so it fits in better with the rest of my bedroom. I also painted the legs black with a white band at the bottom.
OTHER STAINING PROJECTS I’VE TACKLED
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