A client of mine contacted me to refinish some dining chairs she bought. They were a yellowish-white but had a cute, simple shape. She wanted them Old White (she had previously purchased a coffee table, and end tables from me that were painted Old White and knew they would match a white dining table she already had). The problem was she wanted them distressed just like I had done to the other tables and these were factory-finished pine. Pine is a very light wood. When you distress it, it doesn’t really show like a dark wood would! So here is what I did.
During: (I distressed all the edges FIRST to expose the pine)
I then wiped stain on all the exposed wood areas (where I distressed). I let it soak in for a while, then wiped the excess off.
See how the wood has turned dark? That is what will show through after I paint and lightly distress
You have to be VERY careful not to distress too much once you have painted a couple coats. Otherwise the stain will sand away and you will be stuck with that white pine!
Just a word to the wise… I’m not sure what it is, but there was something on the seat of a couple of the chairs that resisted chalk paint. I have NEVER had a problem with chalk paint peeling or chipping. It adheres to everything, like the can says. EXCEPT the seat of a couple of these chairs. It was the strangest thing. I would paint, and as it would dry it was already chipping. On those chairs I had to sand all the way down to the wood on large areas, just so the paint wouldn’t do that. Once I waxed them all a couple times, they were great. But I just thought I’d let you all know, because I’ve seen chalk paint stick to every type of finish, but for some reason these factory-finish chairs weren’t a friend of chalk paint until I sanded them down a bit. Next time, if I have to work on any other chairs like this, I will lightly sand the entire thing, then paint.