Category Archives: Blogger Conferences

Having Fun With a Whale

Leigh Ann and I love carved items, so when I spotted this unfinished blue whale in a shop in Salt Lake City, I couldn’t resist adding him to our collection — and planning on how I was going to give him some needed color.

At the time I was with the Minwax® team in our SNAP! bloggers conference booth, where we were introducing several new colors in our line of Water Based Stains, so naturally I had to do some experimenting, starting with a base coat of white stain on my whale.

After it dried, I lightly started brushing on the Indigo stain in the Minwax® Express Color™ line, letting the white base coat show through in places for a more natural effect.

And since I love the look of true antiques, I “aged” my new whale by lightly sanding off the dried stain with a piece of #180-grit sandpaper, just removing the color on the raised portions which would naturally show the most wear.

And now my unfinished whale is a more realistic model of a blue whale, a proud addition to the mantle over our fireplace.

Until next time,

Measure twice, Saw once!



Practicing For Haven

In this post, I will be demonstrating how to stencil. I started by sealing the wood with two coats of Minwax® Polycrylic Protective Finish to prevent the stain from seeping beneath the outline of my stencil.

Since my stencil is very large, I sprayed a light coat of aerosol adhesive on the back, then let it dry so that the back of the stencil is tacky, but not wet with glue.

While my spray adhesive was drying, I gathered my tools:  a sea sponge, Minwax® Express Color™ Onyx, paper towels, and a scrap piece of plywood to hold them all.

After dipping my sea sponge lightly into a small puddle of Onyx stain and finish, I pressed it onto the paper towel to remove the excess stain that might seep under my stencil, then carefully and lightly began dabbing a thin layer of stain atop the stencil. Don’t get impatient and apply too much, as it will run under the edge of the stencil.

By repeating the process, I quickly began building up thin layers of stain over the stencil.

In less than ten minutes I had covered the entire stencil on my practice board.

Then came the first reveal as I carefully pealed back the stencil.

Beginning to get the picture?

And here is my completed practice stencil for the top of the kitchen cart! After it dries I will protect it and the wood with an additional coat of Minwax® Polycrylic Protective Finish.

From Pallet To a Surprize for Haven

I try not to let anything go to waste here in my workshop, so when this delivery pallet ended up in my driveway, I thought of something I could make to give away in the Minwax® booth at the Haven bloggers conference July 11-12 in Atlanta.

I started by cutting the slats from the pallet into 2″ strips, then picked a patriotic theme using Minwax® Express Colors™ “Crimson” and “Indigo.” (But you can use any combination of Minwax® stains, including the new Wood Finishing Cloths, to customize your pallet projects.)

Next I assembled them into an 8″ x 12″ x 18″ tool box, stenciled on some stars, and added a simple handle down the center, all glued and nailed together for a rustic look.

I scuffed up the dried stain with #180-grit sandpaper to give it a worn, antique look (leaving the pallet nail holes!), and then had fun filling it with Minwax® goodies for one of the lucky attendees we will be meeting at the Haven conference in Atlanta.

Maybe we’ll see you there!

Thanks for stopping by!



Having Fun With False Graining

When I mentioned to Alex here in my office that I showed the attendees at the SNAP! bloggers conference how to do “false graining,” she gave me the same look the day I asked her to get me a sheet of carbon paper, asking “What’s that?”  In case you’ve never seen this old technique, I’ll show you what I demonstrated for Alex.
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