Hidden Curly Maple

by Julee
6 Materials
10 Days
I was given an apothecary cabinet by a neighbor to strip, re-stain, and just bring back to life. It turned out to be quite the treasure! This cabinet was so dark I had no idea what wood was underneath. As I began to sand it, I saw it was maple with tiger striped markings! It took a lot of sanding and even some bleach to get most of the 80+ year old dye out of the grain. But once I did, I was able to put several coats of Tung oil on it, seal it, and clean up the marble top!
This was the original piece
i Started sanding the cabinet, when I saw the tiger markings, I stopped and researched the wood to make sure I wouldn’t damage it.
I couldn’t sand it enough, actually. I used straight Clorox bleach. I tested the inside shelf to see what would happen. When i was satisfied with the bleach, I washed the cabinet in a 1:1 white vinegar to water solution. I had read this was to neutralize the bleach before using BLO or Tung oil.
You can see the bleach working within an hour
To clean the marble top, i tried just water, Dawn and water, hydrogen peroxide, and finally I made a paste of baking soda and water. The paste-mix was the best!
After baking soda & water
Here is the final product. I stained the maple frame darker to blend in the brown marble top with the rest of the piece. It was truly A hidden treasure!
Resources for this project:
Baking soda, Clorox bleach
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 1 comment
  • Zac Builds Zac Builds on Mar 08, 2018

    I've never seen anyone bleach wood like that! Look great, I'll have to keep that in mind next time I need to strip some stain off something :)