Staining Painted Wood with Coffee

October 7, 2013

CREATE   |   Published October 7, 2013

Not to long ago, I picked up a great piece with three shelves to hang on the wall.  I believe it was probably handmade and is a nice sturdy, well built piece with a beadboard backing.  It also had a great stained finish.  I debated whether or not to leave it alone, but ultimately decided to paint it.  (Who wants to read a DIY blog post about a piece of furniture I bought and didn't do anything with?!?!)

I rubbed the edges of the piece with some candle wax to make the distressing easier.  Then painted it with three coats of white chalk paint, followed by some sanding and sealing with varnish.

I wanted the piece to be a little more rustic than just a painted and sanded surface, but I didn't want to stain the piece knowing it would be hard to wipe the stain off in the corners and on the beadboard.  To solve this problem, I decided to make some coffee!

Lately, I've been staining my finished crafts with some strong instant coffee.  (You'll see these projects in December because they are for Christmas!!)  It is brushed (or rubbed) on easily, gives a nice stained finish, and can easily be wiped off if the stain is too dark.

Normally, I boil some water in the microwave and then mix in some instant coffee to make a strong, dark liquid.  I have no idea how much coffee I add or how much water I use....It is easily customized depending on how dark you want it.  Make sure you wear gloves when doing this, though, or you'll end up with some brown hands!!!!

After rubbing the coffee stain over the entire piece, I wiped it down with a rag dampened with a little water.  This smoothed out the stained surface.  (For my crafts, I've left the finish as is....I just didn't want this piece to be as primitive.)

The coffee followed by the water adds just enough of a stain to bring out the details in a piece without overwhelming you with a stained finish.

Unfortunately, I had nowhere in my house with decent lighting to hang this piece, so these photos are all taken outside....Just imagine it hanging on your wall!

I'm pleased with how the piece turned out....nice and distressed with a finish that could fit into just about any decorating style.  And the white color will allow whatever is placed on it to pop.

So what do you think of my staining technique?  Is it something you think you'd try?

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