Using Unicorn Spit colored gel stains to recreate a salvaged wood finish
Working with reclaimed materials
*This post is sponsored by Unicorn SPiT, but all statements and opinions are mine.
This entire process of recreating the color start to finish is 100% VOC-FREE, Non-toxic and uses naturally safe products.
My brother and his fiance just bought their first home and I needed not only a house warming gift, but also a wedding gift. They both wanted a new table that would fit everyone around it and a farm house style. We decided on salvaged heart pine from old railway cars and turned legs, then I got to work building.
When using reclaimed or salvaged materials make sure you’re using items that do not have a risk for lead, asbestos or other hazardous materials. Test kits can be picked up at your local hardware store.
Because most of the lumber I was using came from old railway cars, most was very uneven/warped and needed to be planed down to a level surface. By planing and sanding, much of the original patina was removed.
I needed to recreate the original color of the wood and match what patina was left.
Recreating old patina
To recreate the original color/patina of the salvaged wood I grabbed my set of Unicorn Spit colored gels stains.
I started with Midnight Blackness and using it diluted with 50% water, I used a chip brush over all the dents and dings of the table. Then wiped off the excess with a rag.
You can see it left the color down in the imperfections perfectly.
Then using one part Rustic Reality, one part Squirrel and one part Lemon Kiss I mixed all together then diluted with 50% water.
While I was staining away with that mix, I blended in a few spots of straight Lemon Kiss here and there to add dimension and color variations.
I kept a spray bottle of water close to use while blending the colors.
Once I had the entire surfaced stained and blended, I brush on some Midnight Blackness in random spots. I used the spray bottle again as I went to gently help the brush blend the colors.
After going over any spots that needed touch up, I let the table dry for about an hour.
Once the table was dry I used Pure Tung Oil in a soaking application with 12 hours in between each application wiping off any excess after the wood stayed wet for 60 minutes.
Make sure when using pure tung or hemp oils you’re saturating the entire surface, looking for dry spots every 15-20 minutes until the entire surface remains wet for 60 minutes.
Once the oil was allowed to dry for a full day, I used Cece Caldwell Paints in Beckley Coal on the legs. Then finished them up with Daddy Van’s wax in Shadow Black.
Here it is finished.