My good friend Kristina has been busy planning her oldest daughter, Annikka's wedding. We started talking about decorations and that led to me acquiring this dresser.
The plan was to fancy her up a bit, use it for decoration for the reception and then give it to Annikka for her new apartment. This is my version of a wedding gift. Notice the cobwebs underneath? Yeah, she'd been stored on a back patio for quite a while.
So, cutting to the chase. I primed, brushed 2 coats of homemade chalk paint, added some off-white accents and here she is.
Since she had some pretty significant wear, I decided we should rock the shabby look, made possible with some 100 grit sandpaper and a whole lot of elbow grease.
When it came time to seal it, I chose not to go with my typical PAS. I knew I wanted some sort of glaze or dark wax to bring out the details and since I used chalk paint, if I used polyacrylic that would mean brushing on at least one coat to seal the porous paint, glazing, and then brushing on 2-3 more coats. That didn't sound too fun. I decided to bring out the detail with some dark antiquing wax.
Since I made my own chalk paint, why not make my own dark wax too?
I started with some Johnson Paste Wax. Why? Because I had it on hand. Why did I have it on hand? Because it's half the price of most soft waxes and I'm cheap. I've used both Annie Sloan and CeCe Caldwell wax before. I like them both (CeCe Caldwell's better), but I've had really good results with SC Johnson's paste wax too.
To get ready to tint the wax, make sure the wax is very soft, almost melted consistancy. To do this, you could set the tub in a bowl of hot water, not reaching the top of the tub and let it sit for a few minutes and then stir well.
Or, you could do what I did and leave the tub of wax sitting on a shelf in the garage and live in a place that reaches 115 degrees almost daily. That technique worked great! All I had to do was scoop some out into a plastic container.
Because wax is oil-based, you will need to tint it with an oil-based product. I started by pouring a bit of Kona wood stain into the wax and stirring well.
It looked perfect! But when I tried some on a sample board, it was a bit weak. It didn't really leave any color after it was buffed off. So, to step it up a notch, I added around a teaspoon of Raw Umber universal tint.
I know I've mentioned this product a million times before, but it's really that useful! You can use it to tint virtually anything (water-based, oil-based, shellac, etc)! I talked about using universal tint to mix custom glaze in this post. Also, a bottle only costs around $10 at Home Depot and lasts forever. I bought this bottle over a year ago, use it several times a month, and it's more than half-full still!
After adding the tint, I stirred the wax very well, making sure to blend any lumps. It was pretty runny. Too thin to try to wax something with. I simply covered the container, and popped it into my fridge for about half an hour. Once it set up, it was perfect! Nice, smooth, dark wax with just the right amount of pigment.
Back to the dresser/wedding gift.
Using a clean rag, I rubbed on one coat of dark wax, let dry and buffed. After about 3 hrs, I applied an additional coat of clear wax, for added protection.
The dark wax toned down the white a bit, without making it look dirty. And I love the way it emphasized the details in the wood.
Once more, let's see the before
I'm happy with the way my blue and white painted dresser came out and I'll definitely make my own DIY dark wax again!
Let's be friends! Follow along, so you never miss a post