finishing

I See a Red Door…

This morning I added a coat of pitch black milk paint to my sack-back chair. After you strain milk paint, it’s a lot more like adding a colored wash than it is like painting. (It’s funny how my wife doesn’t even bother asking me what I want her old pantyhose for anymore.) As Michael...

A Little Bit of Red

Early chairs , especially American ones , look best when they are painted. Like any good woodworker who is in love with his or her raw material, I’ve tried to make stick chairs without painting them. Some chairs, such as two Welsh stick chairs I built six years ago, look pretty good to my...

Janitorial Strength Alternative for a Fumed Oak Finish

In my elementary school, the janitor was a shadowy character who mostly stayed in the basement, in his private area next to the boiler room. Yet he was powerful enough to make everyone (even teachers and the principal) remove their shoes when he waxed the gym floor. And he had a collection of chemicals...

Authentic Arts & Crafts Finish

Editor’s note: In the Summer 2008 issue we promised to reprint our article on an “Authentic Arts & Crafts Finish” from 2007. We just noticed that we neglected to post the article. So here it is! - Christopher Schwarz We discover a three-step process that looks great and is incredibly simple to apply. Simplicity...

Why We Hate Paint

Yesterday I finished up work on the dry sink that is the cover project for the Spring 2009 issue of Woodworking Magazine (Issue 13). As always, the finishing part of the project was as much an adventure as designing and building it. The project is made from Eastern white pine, so we knew that...

Nothing Magic About My Rag

Sometime back in 1996 I took a piece of cloth that was cast off from my wardrobe. I cannot remember what the garment was. A sweatshirt perhaps? Long underwear? It’s a bit stretchy. And I soaked the sucker in WD-40. Since that day, I have soaked that rag with every kind of oily substance...