How to lighten oak furniture?
Hi All. We have a few inherited vintage oak pieces (wardrobe, dresser, dressing table) which I am in the process of stripping down to bare wood... but even with the varnish gone it still is too dark. Since it belonged to hubby's granny-he is not happy with us painting and wants to leave it natural - so my only option is to lighten it. White lime wax is an option - or white washing... I would really appreciate advise from someone who has successfully brought a piece back to life by making it lighter and also the best options to seal it to prevent from turning yellow over a period of time. Thanks
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We have an oak china hutch that I originally stained very dark. I eventually sanded the case down to remove all stain - lots of work. Then I re-stained with a light wood stain. However, the doors were too difficult to remove old stain, so I built new doors to save time. I used poly as a top coat, but shellac is also an alternative.
Stripping will not remove the stain since it has absorbed into the wood. Your best bet is to sand it down to raw wood. A power hand sander will speed up the process. Then you can stain a lighter color and seal with three coats of a water based polyurethane.
Hi Benita, I fund this restoration video that shows you how you can bleach oak furniture - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fdp7-S0WUrU Hope it helps
Thanks Michelle... I live in South Africa - so some of the products you refer to are not available locally - we do get Rustoleum - but Unicorn Spit is not locally available...
I will check out Rustoleum... they might have something that will work.. We have just sanded some more off and it is a LOT lighter already...