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How to: Wood Dye

February 26, 2015 by Scott - Saws on Skates

wood dye promo

A few years ago I went to woodworking show. One of products being demonstrated was wood dye. I was amazed how common pine could be transformed into a deep, rich color using wood dye. I immediately thought of my quest to achieve IKEA’s signature brown-black color. Could wood dye be the answer? Yes and no.

I’ve tried wood dye on several projects, and for me, it has its place. Yes, you can achieve a dark finish on pine. The issue I have is it leaves the wood looking “flat”. Despite topping with a clear finish, to me, the wood grain looked dull. Perhaps it would look better if it were topped with polyurethane or sprayed with a clear coat, but I’m not a fan of either of those.

Where I think it works is best is on rustic looking furniture or projects where you want a dull, aged look. I’ve used it inside of antique-style jelly cupboards and signs and it looked great. My recommendation is to test it before applying it to your finished project.

Here’s a sign I made for a wedding and the wood dye worked great for that rustic look.

come as you are

Applying wood dye is pretty easy. You’ll need wood dye in the color of your choice, a brush (foam or chip brush work well) and a spray bottle filled with water.
wood dye 2

Stir the dye, lightly mist the piece with water and apply the dye… that’s it! If you’re going add additional colors or stains, you’ll need to lightly sand as the water and dye raise the grain.
wood dye 3

wood dye done
Let me know your thoughts. Have you had success with wood dye?


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One thought on “How to: Wood Dye

  1. atkokosplace says:

    Great tips! Thank you. 🙂

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