Yeah, you can do that.
Old wood is awesome, but not so easy to find in the sizes I need.
Can be a little “pricey” too.
Here’s a quick trick to age new wood to look a little weathered……or a lot weathered.
Shred a handful of steel wool and add it to a Mason jar of vinegar.
After a couple of days….It looks like this muck.
Use this to “paint” on wood.
As it dries, and the mixture soaks into the wood, the colors start to age.
Now, this is important. Different woods will react differently to the vinegar mixture.
Yeah, the cedar bled a little, but I think y’all get the idea.
I brushed it all over the pine shelves on my plumbing pipe fixture in the living room.
Here’s the before:
And after a coat of the vinegar mixture…..
I’m not sure where the “pink” tones came from…but there they are.
I promise, it looks much more grey/brown after a few days of drying.
“How does the vinegar and steel wool make the wood change?” you may ask.
The only plausible answer is “Science”.
Science is why.
Use this knowledge only for good.
Just wanted to say I love what you two have done to the house and highly enjoy your DYI attitudes! It helps us common folks out tremendously!
Thanks AJ, we put a lot of pride in our place, so glad it inspires. But I asure you…..we’re pretty common too.
I did the same thing on my new deck, but I used Apple Cidar Vinagar and only had to let it set for about an hour and then I used the steel wool to rub it on. The color was much darker. It works great. I love your Pipe shelving unit and your Blog. Have a great weekend
Thanks for the tip Tina, we’ have to try cider vinegar…..maybe even on our own deck…if we ever build one.
Great Tip….But even more awesome is the shelving unit.
Thanks Janet. We’re pretty proud of it. Glad that we can show it off.
I’ve been wanting to try this. It looks great on your new shelves!
Give it a try. You can always delute the mixture with water if it seems too dark.
Hey! I use this method to stain all the time, I love it – one tip you should try – while your vinegar is “cooking” for those few days, try painting your wood with super strong tea or coffee. It won’t change the color of the wood, but when you add that vinegar steel wool mix, BOOM! It goes nuts. The point is to add something acidic, and when you come over the acid with the vinegar/steel wool combo, some wonderful reaction happens and you can watch it age before your eyes. Give it a whirl!
That’s a great suggestion. You better believe I’m gunna try that.
How timely — as my stash o’ vintage wood from our project house is dwindling day by day. LOL @ “science” + “use this only for good” . . . if only I was so witty!
A www shucks. Sometimes I think my “witty” comes across a little “corney” …..glad it makes you smile.
Your blogs often make me smile. Love ’em.
If steel wool and vinegar makes you smile….it’s just gunna get better from here on.
What you made with the steel wool and vinegar is iron acetate, which can cause a rapid oxidation of the tannins in the wood. As Jesse mentioned above, adding a tea stain to the wood adds tannins. I used this method to make a bench a while back. Here’s the link if you’ll like to take a look: http://wgu.brianchadorourke.com/creativity.html
Thanks Brian. I’ve always wondered about the science behind it. 🙂