How To Distress Wood

How To Make New Wood Look Old

Normally sandpaper is required to distress wood, but not with this easy three step application.

* NOTE: This technique can be used on furniture or walls.

Step 1

Gather your supplies:

  • Your wood project
  • Choose two colors of paint in a light and a dark tone of the same color.
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Hammer, wrench, or screwdriver
  • Soft cloth or rag

Step 2

Use the hammer, wrench or end of a screwdriver to gently dent the wood. Make sure you do not damage the wood, just an indentation. It should look like an old scratch or dent after applying the second coat of paint.

  • Each tool makes a different type of dented shape so use just one or all for a unique pattern.

Step 3

Cover your piece with the lightest color of paint, making sure you get a thorough coat of paint on it. No need to be too neat with the paint because the flaws will give it a vintage characteristic.

  • Let this dry for 24 hours.

Step 4

Use the petroleum jelly to dab on any part of the piece you want to look worn or aged.

  • You can use a rag or just your fingers for this step, making sure you dab jelly in crevices, scratches and indentions you made with your tools. A light touch will do.
  • Leave petroleum jelly on as you paint your dark color.

Step 5

Paint the entire piece with your darkest color and immediately wipe off jelly parts with a soft cloth. You should see an instant aging as you wipe. This is the best part, if you don't like it you can just repaint! If you are nervous about doing this technique on a large piece or wall just practice on a piece of wood.

Voila, instant distress!

This technique is a real easy way to create a vintage and aged look through distressing without sandpaper. 

I hope to find out if some of you tried it.


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