A Small Box For Your Fragile Collectibles

My wife Leigh Ann and I are both collectors, so when I saw this small, unfinished box in our local craft store, I knew one of us could put it to good use.

I selected Minwax® Gel Stain in Antique Maple for the stain. The thicker-bodied Gel Stain gives you more control over your stain, which is what I needed to keep it from running inside the box.

After brushing on the Gel Stain, I used a soft cloth to wipe off any of the unabsorbed stain, always going in the direction of the grain of the wood.

Just for an accent detail, I stained the lip of the top using the darker Hickory Gel Stain. After the stain had dried, I coated it with Minwax® Fast-Drying Polyurethane . . . .

Box, Her

Which is when Leigh Ann decided it would be a perfect storage and display box for some of the shells she had collected while we were on vacation at the beach. I guess I can always go get another one for my collection of arrowheads . . . .

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!

Bruce

A Handy Stepstool

Leigh Ann insists I’m never around when she needs to get something that I’ve put away in the top of the tallest cabinet or shelf in our house, so I thought this sturdy stepstool might keep me out of trouble.

The flat surfaces of the bench made it a good candidate for Minwax® PolyShades®, a combination of stain and polyurethane in one can. The key to applying PolyShades® is to use a quality, natural bristle brush — no foam brushes!!!!!

See the difference between the upper half and the lower half of the top of my bench? On the upper half I have used long, continuous strokes with just the tips of my bristle brush to smooth out the PolyShades®. The lower half stills shows the uneven brush marks that need to be straightened out using this technique called “tipping off.”

And since PolyShades® contains both stain and finish, one step was all I needed to complete my project — and hopefully keep me out of trouble.

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!

Bruce

An Antique Crate For Pet Toys

My wife Leigh Ann has her veterinary practice in a restored 1920s house, so when I spotted this antique beverage crate in a flea market, I knew it would be perfect for the pet toys she keeps in her waiting room.

After vacuuming out the cobwebs and dirt, I brushed on a coat of Minwax® Fast-Drying Polyurethane, using the satin sheen to protect and retain the old look of the wood.

The bottom of the crate still had its original slats, so I cut and dropped in some stiff cardboard to keep the toys from falling out from between the spaces between the slats.

As soon as the finish dried, we took the box over to Leigh Ann’s clinic, where it blended in well with the old heart-pine floors and woodwork . . . .

But it didn’t take long for Jasper and Daisy to begin pulling their favorite toys back out of the box! At least we now have a place to store them when they’re done playing.

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!

Bruce

A Colorful Serving Tray

When I spotted this inexpensive serving tray and set of coasters in our local craft store, I thought it would be a great way to use some of my Minwax® Water Based Wood Stains.

In my cupboard I had Deep Ocean, China Red, Mustard, and Verdigris for the four coasters . . . .

And Slate for the tray itself. No need for a brush, as this was a perfect project to finish with the aerosol version of Minwax® Polycrylic® Protective Finish.

Not only does the tray and coaster set give our antique dining room table a dash of color, but it also protects the finish from hot coffee mugs.

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!

Bruce