A Rich Wood-Look-Painting Effect For Furniture

I used this wood-look-painting technique aka faux painting on my bathroom vanity to make it look like rich mahogany wood. It worked great!

A new vanity would have been costly and wasn't in my budget but my old one looked dated and had a honey colored finish. I wanted a deep rich maple to coordinate with my master bedroom furniture, and besides, I really liked the style and size of my old one. 

 Have An Outdated Vanity or Cabinet?
Use This Wood-Look Painting Technique

Today's decorating trends for wood cabinets and floors are dark, rich, mahogany and ebony wood colors and grains.

Here's my faux finish wood-look-painting "how to" for a bathroom vanity makeover that you can do too! It can be done on any piece of furniture! Scroll down to see other pieces I've used this wood-look painting finish on...

  1. Remove all knobs and doors and drawers
  2. Scruff up the surface with sand paper and take the sheen off.
  3. Find a template of the type of wood you want to duplicate (I used a drawer from my dresser)
  4. Look closely at the template for the lightest tone in the grain
  5. Buy some paint sample colors and match the color the best you can (I used a coral color flat paint)
  6. Paint the piece that color
  7. Purchase a few different color craft paint colors that you see in the wood template.ex., brown, black, red, burnt umber, ochre, and get a clear glaze( I use craft acrylic paint and glazes from Walmart)
  8. Mix a few colors together with some glaze and a little water to make the different tones you see in the wood (don't try to be perfect, let loose, glaze is forgiving and takes a while to dry so you can wipe it off if you don't like it.
  9. Dry brush one color mix at a time on starting with the lightest colors first using your chip brushes.
  10. Use a side to side paint stroke like the grain in wood.(The chip brush will do the work for you and it will look like a wood grain, you can twist your wrist while brushing on the paint to get more of an effect or you can use a wood grain tool purchased from  the craft section)
  11.  Use your artist brushes to add worm holes and squiggles that you see in your template.
    Let it dry overnight or for 4-5 hours at least.
    Seal it with a clear satin polyurethane or add more dimension like I did and used a mahogany stain with a sealer in it.
    Warning! This takes a long, long time to dry (cure) It will be tacky for days, but be patient! It does dry to a nice hard finish, and it looks just like wood! No one will know.

Almost complete, just need to add the center piece

Materials Needed For This Wood-Look-Painting Technique

  • Paints: browns, something in the red family, black,raw umber, burnt sienna, ochre. 
  • clear glaze
  • artist brushes
  • chip brushes
  • polyurethane/satin
  • sand paper/fine
  • wood template
  • rags
  • plastic cups for mixing

Any Questions or Comments? Ask the Forum! We're always ready to help!

Hope you enjoyed this wood-look-painting technique, be sure and check out my other DIY projects at Room Decorating Ideas 

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