This is just a quick tutorial with photos! I have recently received a few inquiries on what method I use to paint and “age” the frames on my nativity scenes. It is super easy, and can be done with any paint color. I have used this technique on many projects. So here goes.
First things first. You need a piece of wood. In my case… a mitered frame made out of pine. Important: to get this look, do not sand the wood first, ridges and imperfections in the grain are ideal! They really pop out once you sand in a later step.
Paint the wood in your choice of color. I used a creamy white, any paint is fine, but I personally do not prefer anything too glossy. A quick coat will do, coverage isn’t too important so just slap it on! Just watch out for drippies.
Once the paint dries (approximately 30 minutes or so), take your sander (or sand by hand) and sand over everything, paying extra attention to the edges, any neat looking knots or anything you’d like to accentuate with wood stain. If you want a really worn look, sand generously. If you want a subtle look, stick with just the edges. This should only take a minute or two.
Once you are done sanding, wipe off the excess dust and get out your stain. My go-to stain is Minwax’s Dark Walnut. It’s dark, it has a rich nutty taste… what’s not to like? For something this size, like a frame, I wipe (or brush) over the whole thing. If it’s a large project, or you are in a very hot environment, break it into sections. Otherwise the stain removal will require much more elbow grease, and that is the grossest of all the greases. Pay extra attention to the edges and where the wood is exposed for a nice deep stained wood appearance.
Then… take a clean, lint free rag and wipe off. If the stain has set too much in an area, you can actually rework it with more stain, or use mineral spirits. Speaking of mineral spirits, my 9-year-old son told me the other day, that I use the words “mineral spirits” way too much. Which I don’t feel I do. What up with that?
Important!! When using solvents and stains, make sure you hang your rags separately until they are completely dried before throwing them out. Putting piles of wet stain rags in the garbage can actually start a fire. It’s true!
To add extra sheen and protection, let the stain dry for 24 hours, and seal it with polyurethane. For a simple project like this, I usually only use one or two coats of a wipe on poly. (I use the satin finish) Make sure, using a wipe on variety, that you are using a lint free cloth.
Now, you’re done.
Fo real. Isn’t that easy?