Match this antique finish

  • Advertise with us

« back to Finishing forum

Forum topic by Steve posted 03-27-2018 03:27 PM 570 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Steve's profile


82 posts in 1786 days

03-27-2018 03:27 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question oak finishing

A few months back, I turned three replacement finials for a friend’s antique chairs. I’m no expert in chairs, but these appear to be factory made, and probably not more than 100 years old. I turned the new finials from oak, which I believe is the type of lumber used for the chair.

I’m wondering if anyone has advice on how to match the patina and finish of the chairs to the new finials. I’ve been trying to think of a solution since I made these, but have come up completely blank.


-- ~Steve

6 replies so far

View WyattCo's profile


93 posts in 880 days

#1 posted 03-27-2018 04:38 PM

Match the light brown stain the best you can and let it cure. With a match for the dark stain, wipe it on, let it set for just a few minutes. Then wipe off the dark stain in the areas you want the light color to be seen. Test on scrap. Mineral spirits is your friend. It’s going to be easier than you think.

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

2440 posts in 938 days

#2 posted 03-27-2018 05:43 PM

once you match the color, texture and patina on a scrap of the same material,
put it out in the sun for a day or two to see if the wood darkens which will
darken the piece and maybe cause a darker tint that does not match the rest of the chair.
(mahogany is notorious for this).

nice work on the finials, BTW !!!


-- there is no educational alternative to having a front row seat in the School of Hard Knocks. --

View bondogaposis's profile


5790 posts in 3127 days

#3 posted 03-27-2018 06:21 PM

I would use red mahogany water or alcohol base dye, topped with BLO then use Behlens Van Dyke brown shading and glazing stain, top coat with varnish of your choice. It will take some experimentation. Antique finishes are very hard to match.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View OSU55's profile


2648 posts in 2765 days

#4 posted 03-27-2018 06:57 PM

Match the lighter color, stain or dye, wont matter much because not much will show. Two ways to do the dark,probably dark walnut and possibly some black. Could use a glaze and only wipe off the hi areas, or tint shellac and spray the dark where needed, airbrush style. I would probably spray the shellac. Top with probably lacquer but hard to tell from pic.

View AxkMan's profile


65 posts in 902 days

#5 posted 03-28-2018 01:49 AM

Looks like a dark walnut or even ebony. You can apply a light tone coat (like pine) as the base and then use the darker. This lessens the effect of the darkening allowing several layers to be applied without reaching true black.

View Steve's profile


82 posts in 1786 days

#6 posted 03-28-2018 03:29 PM

Thanks, everyone, for the tips. I’ll do some experimenting and let you all know how it goes.


-- ~Steve

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics