How to stain uneven wood tones?

I purchased this Duncan Phyfe style dining set for $16 at an auction. I am planning to stain the top dark walnut or darker and paint the legs and chairs white.

if I use a dark stain will it stain evenly or do I need other prep beforehand.

Notice the uneven tone; it looks like sun damage to me.
  5 answers
  • Rebecca Taylor Rebecca Taylor on Aug 01, 2018

    Hello, I am pretty sure it will stain uneven. What I would do is find a stain that is the same color as the darkest part of the table. Make the lighter parts match the darker parts first. Let it sink in really well and then go over it with the color you want the table to be. I think that will take care of the problem.

  • Zard Pocleeb Zard Pocleeb on Aug 01, 2018

    I can’t see the wood, wood grain very well in the picture. If the wood is pine, it tends to get splotchy when stained. You can usually cure this (at least partially) by using a gel stain. Most other wood should be fine.

  • William William on Aug 01, 2018

    Use any good gel stain. Minwax has instructions. I like Minwax products.

    • Bonnie Shirley Coates Bonnie Shirley Coates on Aug 08, 2018

      I took your advice and I am so pleased with the results. I put 2 coats of Mixwax Gel Stain (Walnut) and then 5 coats of Wipe-on Poly.

      Thank you so much; I will definitely use it again.

      I have attached photos below. I still have to finish my chairs and I WILL turn the table legs around (I keep hitting them with my toe).

  • William William on Aug 08, 2018

    The table looks amazing. Please post your project here.

    • See 1 previous
    • Maggie Maggie on Sep 02, 2018

      Will be interested in knowing what method you use on the chairs. I have some I want to paint but am concerned about paint flaking off. I'm guessing long process of sanding and priming (product?) before painting (product?).

      Your table looks great.

  • William William on Aug 09, 2018

    They will look fabulous!