Category Archives: Quick Fixes & Touch Ups

Tips for Restoring & Protecting Furniture

No matter how careful we are, it always seems to happen:  a nick or a scratch suddenly appears on our furniture. We don’t have time for a complete refinishing, and getting out a can of stain just for a touch-up is inconvenient, so what’s a quick and easy solution?

This is when Minwax® Wood Finish™ Stain Markers are great to have around. These handy tubes of stain have a felt tip for easy application, so you just pick the color that matches your furniture, apply the stain, and wipe off any excess. It’s that easy.

In just a few minutes the stain is dry and the nick or scratch has nearly disappeared. Got time for one more tip?

The best way to preserve and protect an antique finish is with a coat of Minwax® Paste Finishing Wax, in either natural or special dark. Rub on, let it begin to dry, then buff with a soft cloth to a semi-gloss sheen – and you won’t have to worry about guests setting a glass on your family heirlooms.

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!




A Cure for Rotted Wood

Many people often confuse Minwax’s Wood Putty, a soft, tinted material used to fill nail holes, with Minwax® High Performance Wood Filler which is used less often, but plays an important role in repairing rotted wood, such as what I found in this pine table which has sat on my deck since 1998.

High Performance Wood Filler consists of two substances:  the filler in the can and the hardener in the tube. Following the directions on the can, I mixed the two together…

… then packed it into the void where the rotted wood had fallen out.

After it had dried and hardened, I used a coarse file to remove most of the excess Wood Filler, then followed with #120-grit sandpaper to level the Wood Filler with the surface of the surrounding wood.

Quick Tip:  To make my patch look more realistic, I used a hobby knife to cut grain lines into the smooth, hardened Wood Filler.

I then applied a fresh coat of Sherwin-Willliams WoodScapes exterior house stain to my deck table, and, as you can see – or not see – the Wood Filler made the rotted section (front right) nearly disappear.

Until next time,

Measure twice, saw once!


How to Fix a Water-Stained Bench

We had a heavy downpour last week, which caused the skylight in our bedroom to leak. The water sat overnight on an oak bench I had built more than twenty years ago and finished with shellac. As you can see, the shellac had little resistance to the water.

In cases like this, the only solution is to sand off the old finish. For this I used my palm sander and #180-grit sandpaper. Since I was only refinishing the top of the bench, I protected the end boards from the sander with blue masking tape.

After vacuuming off the dust, I reached for a can of Minwax® Wood Finish™ in “Gunstock”. It can be applied with either a brush or a cloth, but all excess stain has to be wiped off before it dries, as the stain belongs in the wood, not on top if the wood.

Instead of shellac, this time I used the satin sheen of Minwax® Fast-Drying Polyurethane. The satin sheen gives it an antique look, but it still has the polyurethane protection my bench needs.

Just a faint reminder of the water stain remains, as I purposely only did a light sanding to preserve the aged look of the oak bench. I could have removed all of the stain with a belt sander and bleach, but that would have also erased the “character” of my bench.

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!




Learn Tricks of the Trade to Protect Your Tools and Use Them the Right Way

Expertly plan, craft and finish your next woodworking project with these tips and tricks. Keep them in mind and it will surely help your next project be easier. 


I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: those cardboard sleeves are not just for the store display. After you clean your brush, slip the sleeve back on, and it will keep the bristles straight and clean for the next time you need your brush.


This small, lightweight hammer may not be good for pounding large nails, but it is perfect to keep next to your stains and finishes to tap the lids safely and securely in place.


Before you bring your latest project or piece of furniture into the house, turn it over and tap in a set of glides to prevent it from leaving deep scratches or even gouges in your hardwood floor. Its a quick and easy way to protect the investment you have made in your flooring.

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!