Gonzales Rustic Furniture Find...but I Want It to Look Antique - Help!

I was lucky enough to find a set of 3 Gonzalez Rustic furniture pieces at auction for only $125! The coffee table alone sells for over $500 online. However, I don't like the natural pine finish, and want it to have a warm, worn antique look. I've never tried to stain something to look old before and need some advice on prep, colors/mixing of colors, and finish (wax/poly?) to achieve the look of the last picture. Is there a trick to getting the variation of colors within the stain, or will the knots, lines, etc., naturally do that?
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Accent Table
q gonzales rustic furniture find but i want it to look antique help, painted furniture, rustic furniture, Coffee Table
Coffee Table
q gonzales rustic furniture find but i want it to look antique help, painted furniture, rustic furniture, Side Table
Side Table
q gonzales rustic furniture find but i want it to look antique help, painted furniture, rustic furniture, This is the finish I want to achieve
This is the finish I want to achieve.
  11 answers
  • Sherrie Sherrie on May 16, 2013
    It depends on what you want. Also what kind of pine. Yellow or white. You have to find out what kind it is before you stain it. Because that will determine what kind of stain you'll use. That is if you want to stain it at all.

  • Leslie D Leslie D on May 16, 2013
    I definitely want to stain it. It's obviously been in the dry, arid West for a while and has taken on a dull appearance. This particular furniture comes untreated and is prone to cracking if left untreated, and it's built with yellow pine to avoid warping. I'd read several online posts that say to always condition or use a sealer on pine before staining to avoid it being splotchy. I just wondered how I can manage to get the variations of color like on the stained photo...is that by using multiple coats/multiple colors, etc., or will the wood do this itself when stained? Do I use a light coat of darker stain and wipe it off to leave the dark in the crevices, knots, etc., and then go over it with a slightly lighter color, or the same color? I don't really have any extra pieces to practice on, unless I try the underside of a piece first, and I'm afraid of ruining it if I don't do it right the first time.

    • Gcw351722 Gcw351722 on Jun 16, 2014
      @Leslie D I build furniture and if you are going to stain pine the best thing to do is order some aniline dye from woodworkers supply and use that. If you are looking for the reddish brown then you will want to order both American Walnut and Red Mahogany. You will need to experiment with the portions for the dye to obtain the look you are trying to achieve..When using it, It is very forgiving. If you get too much on, just take a wet cloth and lift some off. Also pine will get blotchy if you don't use a wood conditioner on it first. I have used Charles Neil's wood conditioner and have been really happy with the outcome. Good Luck! Gary

  • Sia@South 47th Sia@South 47th on May 17, 2013
    You may want to try a warm colored dye, instead of a stain. Since stain has a tendency to get splotchy on Pine. Then use some Bri-Wax, it comes in all colors and is natural. I use it on everything and have for YEARS. NICE finds btw!! xo

  • Jeanette S Jeanette S on May 18, 2013
    Here is a photo of my rustic pine coffee table (the one hubby asked if I paid good money for it). I got an excellent price on it because one corner was scuffed...heck, the entire table is scuffed, the frame is painted red and is rusty...so a little ding was fixed with a rub of raw umber oil paint thinned with turpentine! Mine had no kind of sealer or wax on it. You might want to mix up some strong tea or coffee and try a wash on the back of one of the side tables, or underneath the bottom. It might make a perfect wash for it. Tea would be more into the rust hues and coffee into the browns. Try both! Mine has survived grandchild, and years of being in the man cave...you know how guys love to prop up their feet on one of these! The more abuse it gets, the prettier it gets.

  • Leslie D Leslie D on May 18, 2013
    Thanks for the tips, ladies! I've stained new wood many times, but just for a basic stain look. I'll start with the smallest piece (my least favorite of the 3), and see what I can come up with. I appreciate the help!

    • Terrry T Terrry T on Nov 07, 2014
      @Leslie D How about going to the local lumber yard and getting a piece of yellow pine there and practicing on it first?

  • Molly Meredith Molly Meredith on Sep 18, 2013
    I would get a thick chain and bang it with a hammer on it to make it look more rustic then follow with whatever color or stain you like and seal it afterwards.

  • Terra Gazelle Terra Gazelle on Nov 01, 2013
    Rub the areas that would naturally be worn with bees wax.. then stain lightly with your base coat..the place where you rubbed the bees wax will not stain..then after it is dry, stain lightly with a slightly darker coat..but lightly, like a dry brush... then wipe it all off. Use a good furniture wax rub. That is what i have done and it does look older and used.

  • Cynthia E Cynthia E on Jan 18, 2014
    I saw a post here (clipped it) where a stain was made from apple cider and steel wool (longer you let it steep darker the color) http://www.hometalk.com/diy/paint/age-or-stain-wood-with-vinegar-2524453. The color turned out beautiful. If you want lighter and darker streaks, graining. So you might let steep say a week do like Terra suggested rub wax over areas you want lighter stain. Then let stain seep few days longer sand off wax and reapply stain , or keep wax on and do second coat. I would check out link on how to antique w/ stain http://www.ehow.com/how_5575412_antique-stained-wood.html like was suggested above put some dents and gouges in (or worm hole look) to help antique them more.. And even if you cant /test it out on these pieces I would go buy a piece of yellow pine shelving or post from box store and practice my antique stains, dents etc.. see which way of applying or removing works for you. GL & WTG on such a great find! Be sure and post pictures back here when you are done can't wait to see.

  • I achieve the old look by staining, then light spraying black. Once dried, I sand off the black and reveal the stain with the dark remnants from the paint. Good luck and have fun :)

  • M2Texas M2Texas on Jan 08, 2015
    Even though that rustic furniture isn't stained, it is sometimes waxed with something that changes the raw color of the wood. My uncle bought a room full of such furniture looking a lot like your pieces, and he was given or bought some kind of was in the store to renew or protect its look. So, take that into account before you stain or dye over what's there.

  • Terra Gazelle Terra Gazelle on Jan 09, 2015
    There are natural ways to stain furniture..steel wool and vinegar is one..balsolmic vinegar is good. https://www.pinterest.com/explore/vinegar-wood-stain/