A couple of weeks ago I shared a tutorial on our DIY Farmhouse Style Writing Desk, and I got a lot of questions on how I finished it. One of my favorite parts of building furniture is the finish. It’s the details that make a piece whole, it’s the details that tell the story.
This was a fun piece to finish with quite a few layers, but it comes together fairly quickly. So let’s get started!
Supplies: (some affiliate links below)
Farmhouse Writing Desk (tutorial here)
Minwax Special Walnut Stain
Latex Paint – Sherwin Williams Urban Bronze
Minwax Jacobean Stain
Lint Free Cloths
How to Get a Farmhouse Style Finish
I started the process by staining the desk with the Minwax Special Walnut. I decided to apply the stain by rubbing it on with a lint free rag, giving it a hand rubbed look.
After allowing the stain to dry I painted the base of the table with the Sherwin Williams Urban Bronze. I wasn’t too particular about covering every square inch, since some of the paint will be removed during the sanding process.
I let this dry to the touch. I like sanding paint that hasn’t fully set because it allows the paint to roll off a little easier and give you that distressed look. I sanded with steel wool first. It’s a slightly different look than sanding with sandpaper. It’s just a personal preference… remember, I like the details : ). But if you want to use sandpaper, go for it, it won’t ruin the project, I promise.
After I sanded the base, I let that dry, and flipped it over to work on the top. I wanted to add some gray to the top, so I dry brushed the paint on and immediately wiped it off with a damp rag. This allows the paint to get down into the cracks and grooves without overtaking the stain. In the picture below you can see how it affects the wood.
Here is what the top looked like at the end of this step.
After letting the top dry, I felt it needed a little more warmth, so I used my Minwax Jacobean Stain and applied a thin coat to the top using my lint free cloths. You’ll want to do this quickly and very lightly. It is a dark stain and will take to the wood immediately. The best way I found to do this was to put a small amount on the rag and spread it thinly. This also gave it an inconsistent look, which is what I was after.
Once everything was dry it was time to add the “wear and tear” look so I used my sander to distress the edges of the top, the legs, and anywhere else that felt natural.
I decided to go with a clear wax sealant, which I applied with a lint free rag following the manufacturer’s instructions.
This technique is pretty similar to my weathered wood tutorial, so once you get the hang of it you can apply it to any piece of furniture or wood you want!
Please note: This type of finish is meant to go on raw wood, if you are wanting to do this on a piece that is already stained, the process will be slightly different. It will probably look a little different, but I’m sure it will still provide the same general affect.
Looking for more DIY Projects? Check out some of my other tutorials….