How to make wood look old with vinegar. There’s just something about recycled or aged timber that gives any room a rustic or casual feel. Distressed wood has a way of softening any room, perfect for creating a more homely environment in what might feel like an otherwise cold space.
But if your furniture still has that straight-out-the-store glow and you’re wondering how wood can be distressed, happily, there are many ways to achieve a beautifully worn look, none of which require having to wait for years to get it.
How to make wood look old with vinegar
You can turn pristine parts into things of character once you learn how to make wood look old. Below, learn two ways to trick time and make it look like it’s been around for years instead of fresh from the shop for your wood furniture and decor.
Method for Vinegar / Tea
- White vinegar
- Steel wool
- Glass jars
- Black tea
- Hot water or room-temperature
- Wax or polyurethane paste
- Gloves of rubber
Allow the Alternative to Vinegar
The best way to age wood is in your kitchen with stuff you probably already have. Pour the vinegar into the glass jar, about halfway filling it. Shred the wool with steel and return it to the pot. Let the vinegar and steel wool remain in the uncovered container for at least 24 hours.
(A darker look would be produced by letting it sit for longer, just don’t allow rust to form, or you’re going to end up with an orange stain.) The vinegar will cause the steel wool to dissolve.
Combine the tea
Mix the hot water and tea in another glass jar until your solution is ready. To achieve a darker finish, the tannins in the tea will react with the steel-wool-and-vinegar solution.
Sanding the wood
If your piece is already painted or done, before applying the stain, you’ll need to sand it, otherwise, the solution would not stick to the wood.
Painting on a tea
To add the tea to the wood, use the paintbrush. Enable the tea to dry and add the solution to the wood afterward. The aging process will begin as it dries, so before adding a second coat of the solution, you may want to wait.
Secure the Completion
Cover the finish with paste wax or polyurethane when you’re satisfied with your freshly aged wood.
Use a typical paintbrush to cover the wood with thick layers of baking soda paste and then leave the wood in the sun to dry for at least six hours. Shortly after adding the baking soda and water mixture, spray the wood with white vinegar if you want to either exacerbate the reaction or speed it up.
Try out all of the ways and let us know which one you like the best.
7 Ways to Make New Wood Look Old