Stop wasting your hard earned money on store bought wood fillers that don’t match your project! Today, I’m sharing a DIY wood filler recipe that’s easy to make, easy to sand and will save you money. If that’s not enough to convince you to make your own wood filler, this recipe only requires two ingredients. The most important ingredient is sawdust from your project. So you know what that means… it WILL match your furniture project!
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Filling holes or cracks in wood can be a tricky proposition especially if you plan to stain your furniture project. Sure you can buy a wood filler, but have you ever used that stuff on your stained furniture projects? I have and I’m never happy with the results.
Store bought wood filler doesn’t look too bad next to raw wood, but it sticks out like sore thumb when it’s stained. The wood stains dark, but the wood filler doesn’t take the stain as well and is always much lighter. Store bought wood filler just never seems to match. It’s definitely not the attractive, professional look I want for my DIY furniture projects.
Why Make Your Own Wood Filler?
A friend of mine is into sewing and she always says the best way to match thread to fabric is to use a thread color that is darker than the fabric. A darker color will blend or compliment the fabric while a lighter color will stick out like a sore thumb. Just like the contrast between the dark stained wood and the much lighter store bought wood filler.
Wouldn’t it be great if we could make our own wood filler that will compliment our furniture project rather than stick out? We can! Not only will our DIY wood filler match our project, but it’s sooo easy to make, easy to sand and economical!
I recently built a project and there were a few small gaps here and there, so I had an opportunity to whip up a batch of DIY wood filler and an opportunity to share the recipe with you!
Only Two Ingredients Needed
This DIY wood filler is made with only two ingredients. How easy is that?! First you’ll need sawdust from the project you’re building. Collecting saw dust is easy. I collected my sawdust from the dust collection cup on my random orbit sander. You guys remember I never use a palm sander, right? You can read why here.
The second ingredient is clear shellac. This is where the saving money part comes in. Store bought wood filler can only be used as, you guessed it, wood filler! But if you have a can of shellac you can use it not only to make your DIY wood filler, but you can also use it as a sealer or finish for your furniture projects.
Where to Use
This DIY wood filler works best on small holes (like nail holes), small gaps or cracks in wood. The DIY wood filler is not ideal for rebuilding damaged wood. For instance, let’s say your dog chewed the corner off your nightstand. Nope, this DIY wood filler isn’t the best option!
Fill the Holes, Cracks or Gaps
The wood filler is easy to work with. Just simply pack it in the hole, crack or gap. Shellac is sticky, so be sure to wear disposable gloves.
Sand the Wood Filler
One note about shellac. Shellac can resist stain or cause wood to stain slightly lighter than wood not treated with shellac. It’s important when you fill holes with your DIY wood filler that if any shellac squeezes out, be sure to sufficiently sand the surrounding wood when you sand the wood filler. Remember, don’t use a palm sander to sand!
Stain the Project
This stuff is amazing! I bet if I didn’t point it out, you wouldn’t be able to tell where the filler is, right? The DIY wood filler, just like the thread, stains slightly darker than the surrounding wood and it virtually disappears.
Have I convinced you that you NEED to make your own wood filler? It’s sooo easy to make, easy to sand, economical and best of all, will match your furniture project. Stop wasting money on store bought wood fillers that don’t match! Make your own DIY wood filler!
DIY Wood Filler Recipe
Step 1. Pour a little sawdust onto the paper plate. I collected my sawdust from the dust collection cup on my random orbit sander. Note: Don’t use a paper plate with a printed design like I did. The shellac pulled some of the blue color off of the plate!
Step 2. Add a little clear shellac to the the sawdust.
Add just a little at a time. If it’s too dry add a little more shellac. If it’s too wet add a little more sawdust.
We want the consistency of the mixture so that it will almost form a ball.
Step 3. Pack the wood filler in the holes, cracks or gaps. Shellac is sticky, so be sure to use disposable gloves for this step.
Step 4. Once the DIY wood filler is dry, sand it smooth. Shellac can resist stain, so if any shellac squeezes out while you’re filling the holes, cracks or gaps, be sure to sufficiently sand the surround wood when you sand the wood filler.
Step 5. You can apply your stain after the wood filler is sanded. For this project I used my favorite stain, Rust-Oleum Ultimate Wood Stain in Dark Walnut. Can you spot the wood filler? It virtually disappears!