Choosing the Finish for Your Furniture

To Finish or Not to Finish….

Most of the tables and other furniture pieces that leave Rustic+Modern are completely finished and ready for use in the home. We do, however, offer our customers the option to stain/finish their tables themselves. This can have advantages and disadvantages. On the one hand, you might save a little money and you’ll be able to match the table finish to your other furniture or wood trim in the room. On the other hand, doing your own finishing isn’t as cost-effective as it first appears and making a mistake could damage your new furniture.

rustic furniture dallas how to choose the right finish for your furniture

Will It Save Money?

If you decide you want an unfinished table from Rustic+Modern, the table will cost $150 less than a finished table of the exact same design. It sounds like you’re saving quite a bit of money, but does it really work out that way?

When you stain and finish your furniture yourself, you’ll have the added cost of stain and/or clear finishes to consider. You also have to decide how much your time is worth – doing your own finishing requires a time investment, especially if you’re going to do it right. Also, keep in mind that if your stain job doesn’t turn out like you want, we cannot cover the damages under our warranty.

Staining Tips

If you decide to stain the table yourself, the first step is choosing a stain. When you pick up your table or arrange for delivery, ask if we have any scrap wood of the same type as your table. Different woods stain differently, so you’ll want to test the stains on a scrap piece to see what the finished color will look like. If using a custom stain, make sure you mix enough to finish the entire piece because it’ll be impossible to match the second batch exactly.

Choose a clean work area for finishing your pieces. Any dust that gets on the furniture or brushes will mar the finished stain. Using a high-quality brush, work from the edges of the table toward the center. Always make sure the final brush strokes go with the grain and keep an eye out for runs or snags so you can bush them out before the stain dries. Let dry overnight, then lightly sand the surface with 240-grit paper. Apply second or third coats in the same manner until you achieve the desired color. Finish with thin coats of a clear lacquer.

Our Staining Options

Have us stain your furniture for you if you want to ensure a long-lasting, professional finish. We offer several finishing options. For all woods, you can opt for a natural look where we apply multiple coats of high-quality clear finish to enhance the wood’s natural coloring and beautiful grain. This is the only option offered for hickory or black walnut, which do not require staining.

For other woods like pine, alder, oak, and maple, we offer three stain colors: special walnut, dark walnut, and ebony. We also offer shadowed edges by using a staining technique to make the ends of the table boards look darker. Each of our stain colors look a little different depending on which type of wood you choose. You can see samples of the finished colors on our website or make an appointment to visit our design center and look at our furniture in person.

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