DIY Weathered Wood Finish

5 Materials
4 Hours
In my DIY Farmhouse Table and Bench post, I talked all about building my table from scratch. This post is all about how I got my DIY Weathered Wood Finish! If you haven’t read the table post, you’ll definitely want to check that out first.
I LOVE this table.  It’s something I’m most proud of. It was super easy and fool-proof.
I painted the entire base of both the bench and the table in Chalky Finish paint in Everlasting. To get the distressed weathered wood look on top, I tried a new method that I think I will only ever do again.  I’ve tried so many different things without success or they just took so many coats of things that it was hard to repeat.  But this one worked great and was simple!


First, whitewash the wood.  I watered down the rest of my Chalky Finish paint about 50%.  It was still relatively thick, not super watery.  Then I painted it on and wiped off the excess.  I let that dry for a little while.

The next step seems a little weird but I promise, it works.  You get a can of dark stain–I used Dark Walnut by Minwax.  That is scary right?  How can such dark stain make the light gray look?  But think about it–white and black mixed make gray.  So it makes sense. Then wipe on some stain–it doesn’t take a lot.  Then you immediately wipe it off.  I used it rather sparingly, I found that the stain left on my wiping rag worked great for coloring the edges and sides of the table top.  What you are left with is a grayish wood that has white underneath in the spots the stain didn’t touch–like nooks and crannys.  Perfect!  You could heavily distress the wood first with chains and hammers and whatnot if you wanted, but I wanted my dining table to be as smooth as possible to make cleaning it easier.

How I sealed it is also my new favorite.  I used DecoArt’s Soft Touch Varnish.  I LOVE this finish.  You get that soft, smooth, silky finish without it being shiny or changing the color at all.  No yellowing at all, not even a trace of color.  I put on several extremely thick coats in the hopes that it would also help fill in the cracks between the planks of wood.
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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
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  3 questions
  • Ruthanne Parker Ruthanne Parker on Jan 24, 2018
    Table looks great. Does the sealer help keep food and stuff out of the cracks between the wood planks?

  • Darlene Darlene on Feb 08, 2018
    The base coat of the White Chalk paint, was it completely dry before you applied the Minwax stain?

  • Scooter Boo Scooter Boo on Feb 10, 2018
    Would this work on an already stained table?

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2 of 15 comments
  • Darlene Epstein Darlene Epstein on Nov 02, 2018

    Thank you! I wanted to give our old wood table a weathered look, but did not know how to go about it. Thank you so much for your step by step instructions! I can't wait to start!

  • Jennifer Jennifer on Jan 21, 2019

    i have been doing this technique for years! Works great on kitchen cabinets too! I love how different combinations of stain colors over layered chalk paints can give old or new wood a beautiful rustic finish!