May 24, 2015 at 3:51 pm #611
Glen v AModerator
That wood has a funny green stripe in it. How would that look with a light stain?
Poplar can show a wide variety of colors ranging from pale yellow to deep purple, plus green, brown and grey. We hand-pick each board to minimize color variation, but some is always inevitable. Me, I’m color-blind, so slap a brown stain on anything and it looks great to me. Consequently, I am often very insecure when packing up a Percolator kit: Is this piece green? Or grey? Or brown? Will it, in fact, look okay to a normally-sighted individual when stained dark? What if they stain it light?
To put all such worries to rest, I present several Percolators successfully finished with light stains and glazes:
The whitish antique stain (sometimes called “pickling white”) actually increases the contrast between different parts of the grain, while also imposing a unifying whitewash color.
This is Valspar Pecan stain that was allowed to dwell (wet) on the wood for a full 15 minutes before wiping. Sometimes a light stain like this will accentuate color variations rather than unify them, so this can be risky.
Here is a custom glaze finish. Glazes leave some translucent color on the surface of the wood. The effect is like looking at the cabinet through a stained-glass window, or like wrapping the wood in colored celophane. This will tend to unify the color more than other techniques, while still allowing the grain to show through.
To conclude, I say this: Light stains can be tricky, but as you see here they can yield terrific results. If in doubt, practice on the inside surface of a part that will be unseen. And remember, if you like the way it looks, then it is beautiful. I owned a custom cabinet shop for years before going in to amp sales. I often had to encourage insecure customers that if they liked the finish, then that’s all that counts.