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Weathered Pine Stain

June 27, 2012 |
posted by Ana White
Weathered Pine Stain
Weathered Pine Stain
Weathered Pine Stain
Weathered Pine Stain
Weathered Pine Stain
Weathered Pine Stain
Author Notes

Do you love the look of weathered wood, but don’t quite trust a reclaimed wood board for your dining table? Or don’t have an endless supply of pallet boards, not treated with harsh chemicals?

You can still get the look of weathered wood on new boards. And you don’t have to leave your project out in the weather for years to get this look.

I’m really excited today to team up once again with the awesome folks over at Minwax to bring you a quick and easy INDOOR stain tutorial that will age your pine boards in hours, not years!

Can you believe this is the exact same board, one bare pine, and one with a stain applied?  You don't have to dumpster dive and you can stop eyeing your neighbor's old shed to get the beauty of weathered wood in your home!

For this tutorial, I built a Jewelry Wall Cabinet from new pine boards. 

And this is how it turned out!

Yes, those were brand spanking new boards just hours earlier!  

Follow along in this tutorial, and I'll show you exactly how you can also apply that oh so difficult to get weathered gray stain to your new pine boards!

Plans Used in Finish

What You Will Need

Shopping List: 

Pine Indoor project

120 Grit Sand Paper

220 Grit Sand Paper

Staining Rags

Minwax Wood Finish in Classic Gray

Stain Brush

Small Oil Based Stain Brush

Finishing Sanding Block

Spray-On Minwax Polycrylic in Clear Satin

Paint Thinner for cleaning brushes

Minwax Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner

Step 1

Weathered Pine Stain

Preparing Wood

This project is built on pine.  Always take a minute to test the stain on scrap boards to ensure the stain works well with your boards.  Remember that the more rustic your boards are before the stain - the more rustic they'll look after the stain - so go ahead, use up those knotty boards that are straight but have lots of imperfections!

After you build your project, take your time and sand it
well.  Sanding will not only smooth out
any splinters or rough patches, but sanding also prepares your wood for
accepting stain.

I used 120 grit sandpaper for the initial sanding, with an orbital power sander.

Make sure you sand all areas inside and out.

Once your project has been sanded, remove all sanding residue with a brush.  

You can also use a soft bristled brush on a vacuum.  Then follow up with a damp rag, making sure all sanding residue is removed.

Step 2

Preparing Supplies

Minwax just came out with this great new stain called Classic Gray.  It is the only stain that I used on this project.

Like all stains, you will want to mix until the stain is a uniform color.  Scrape the bottom with your stir stick, loosening up stubborn stain on the bottom of the can.

Ready for application!

I use over and over again a good oil based stain brush that is properly taken care of.  For this project, I’m using a 1 ½” brush.  Use a brush sized for your project.

You can also apply with a sponge applicator or rags.

Step 3

Applying Stain

It’s always a good idea to test out the stain on a scrap piece.  If your stain looks blotchy, then apply Minwax Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner before staining – it’s cheap insurance and easy to do.  

When you begin staining, apply in the direction of the wood grain, starting on the inside working your way outward.

Carefully apply stain to all areas, getting the stain into all crevices and joints.

When wood weathers in nature, the knots weather differently than the wood itself.  If you simply apply stain over the knots, the finished product may look unnaturally weathered.  I took a small paint brush and applied stain around the knots.

For areas too small to reach with the main stain brush, use the small paint brush.  Once stain soaks into those knots, it will be difficult to remove.

It’s okay to admire your work as you go!  The color is quite beautiful with a shimmery

Once your first coat has been fully applied, allow the stain
to soak in for up to 15 minutes. If the stain isn't as dark as you'd like, you can add a second coat after 4 to 6 hours.

Don't worry, I got that spot I missed!


Step 4

Wiping Off Excess Stain

After the stain soaks in, test a small area where you first started applying the stain by wiping off
with a rag.  TIP: Use old baby clothes as

If you are happy with the amount of stain soaking in, wipe
off all excess stain on the project.

Blend stain around knots to make knots appear more natural in the stain.

Work excess stain into areas that are lighter or less uniform in color.

Step 5

Additional Coats

The wood used on the doors for my project took the stain much lighter than the rest of the project. Naturally weathered wood will weather inconsistently too – on a board by board basis – but I wanted this project to be more consistent.  So I added a second coat to the doors.  

Around the knots, I carefully added more stain.

And then I just brushed on more stain over the doors.  I let this second coat soak in for about 15 minutes, and then wiped off, blending knots again.

Step 6

Cleaning Brushes

To clean the brush, fill a jar half way up with paint thinner.

Swirl the brush in the paint thinner to loosen up stain.  If you need to, use a fork to comb through the brush bristles.

Then wash your brush with soapy water, swirling the brush in the palm of your hand.

Rinse the brush clean and store in original packaging.  Your brush will be like brand new again!

Step 7

Final Top Coat

Once the stain is completely dry on the project and you are happy with your masterpiece, it's time to seal the deal!

To protect your hard-earned finish, I choose my favorite top coat, Minwax Polycrylic in satin.  The satin sheen is barely noticeable, but will seal your project and make it easy to wipe clean.  And the polycrylic won't amber over time!

First remove all sanding residue with a brush or vacuum with a soft bristled brush.  Then wipe clean with a damp rag and allow the project to dry completely.  

Protect the area around your project from possible overspray or work outdoors.  A word of caution - I once sprayed top coat on outside and the wind picked up and covered the project in dirt and leaves .... Thankfully, the Minwax Spray On Polycrylic dries to touch fast.

I sprayed on three coats of polycrylic, opting for light even coats, and waiting about half an hour between coats, lightly sanding the project with 220 grit sandpaper in between coats, and removing all sanding residue before spraying.  This results in a super smooth finish!

Enjoy the look of weathered wood without waiting on the weather or
worrying about what's in that wood!

Special thanks to Minwax for bringing you this staining tutorial!

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Step 15

Oh My Hamsters!

You just went and made something else look as easy a PB&J. I am so in love with your website! ^.^

posted by Mum of two | on Fri, 2012-06-29 15:13

Weather Pine

I know you need to give credit to Minwax products but can I use one of those foam brushes and save a lot of clean up.

posted by EmilyFrazier (not verified) | on Fri, 2012-06-29 17:59
YankeeBelle's picture

Stain Colors

Minwax has some terrific stain colors. I just built a pantry for my kitchen (my first build....whew! What a learning experience THAT was!) and I picked up a can of Minwax whitewash and a can of their parchment. I have sample boards leaning up against the pantry with one and two coats of each and I can't decide! Now this is another option to add to my indecision!! YIKES!! Great tutorial (as always)....thanks Ana!

posted by YankeeBelle | on Fri, 2012-06-29 18:18
whitney_smith's picture


I can't wait to find this stain color!!!


posted by whitney_smith | on Fri, 2012-06-29 18:42

Use pebbles to stir the stain.

"Scrape the bottom with your stir stick, loosening up stubborn stain on the bottom of the can."

I drop several small pebbles into the can, put the lid back on and shake and swirl it until the pebbles are mo0ving freely. Works like the beads in spray paint.

posted by Anonymous Coward (not verified) | on Fri, 2012-06-29 19:09

I am wondering how everyone

I am wondering how everyone else disposes of the dirty paint thinner after they clean their brushes. Ideas?

posted by babysteps | on Sat, 2012-06-30 13:11
Pam the Goatherd's picture

I bought a bunch of paint

I bought a bunch of paint thinner in plastic containers when I found it on sale one time and stored it in my garage. Now, a few years later, I have found that some of the unopened jugs are almost empty due to evaporation through the plastic. At that point a light bulb went off in my head. I have started cleaning my brushes with paint thinner in a plastic coffee can. Once the paint solids settle to the bottom of the can I pour off the clean paint thinner into another more permanent container and leave the goop in the bottom of the coffee can to evaporate and dry out. Once it's dried out I toss it in the trash.

posted by Pam the Goatherd | on Sun, 2012-07-01 20:18
birdsandsoap's picture

great idea!

That's a good idea, now I won't have a bunch of toxic stuff I'm too afraid to throw in the trash.

posted by birdsandsoap | on Sun, 2012-07-15 03:11

Where can i get some quickly!?!?

Hello. Love your site. I have a project due in the next few days and i can't find this stain (Minwax Classic Grey) to buy in any stores and the few places like home depot which i called say it will take 5 to 7 business days to get it in. Do you have any idea where i can find it in North Jersey area? If i have to delay the project then i will but i would like to get this stain as soon as possible. Thank you so much in advance for any

posted by Paulo Coelho (not verified) | on Mon, 2012-11-05 07:50

Fine piece of art! I didn't

Fine piece of art! I didn't know that painting furniture can be such a complex process. That explains the price to some pieces of furniture I saw on http://www.decorplanet.com/, they really caught my eye.

posted by kally | on Tue, 2012-11-06 06:19

Minwax stains

I love the tutorial! I refinished my entire kitchen cabinets last year, all the way down to naked wood. I mixed my own stain because I wanted to match my Mission Style family room furniture. I wanted it to be a rich deep amber color. The color of hot brewed tea. I used 3 different colors and got the perfect shade. I made a gallon of it! It is stored in a gallon glass pickle jar. I won't be running out of it! I could not have done it without Minwax. I called their help line several times when I had a question, and they were so nice. I got one fellow, Kyle , I think is his name got me three times and I always got a pleasant helpful answer.
It took me 3 and a half months to complete the whole project. However, by comparison, I saved probably $10,000. And rather than reface, with particle and laminate, or veneer, I have my original solid oak doors.
I have had great comments on my long project. It took the kitchen out of commission from November through March. But the results, well, the man at the cabinet hardware specialty store asked who redid my door, when I took one in to find new hinges. He was surprised and very complimentary about my results.
I did, because I am frugal sometimes- reuse my original hinges. I scrubbed and cleaned and oiled them and they were as good as new. The ones that had rusted, the ones by the sink and dishwasher were sadly worn. But I had enough from other projects to fill all the spots. I added knobs and drawer pulls which I did not have originally. My Kitchen is quite pretty and I think, if you think you can do it- give it a try. There are so many sites to go to now- Like Ana's, someone will have a good answer for your dilemma! What is the worst that can happen? You goof, you start over. Just be safe, and smart!You can do it! Elbow grease and sweat equity works wonders. Good Luck!

posted by Pat Kennedy (not verified) | on Thu, 2012-11-08 10:39

This is truly amazing. This

This is truly amazing. This will eventually help me to remodel my old furnitures at home so I can still use it. Thank you for this post. -

posted by kazey | on Thu, 2013-05-02 21:39
hkherry's picture

Sometime stain is good

I love your blog, after read your blog I seen sometime stain is good for look the whole plate of wood.

Air Bath Tub System

posted by hkherry | on Wed, 2013-06-26 06:30
WorkwearUSA's picture

This is why I come back!

I've built things for as long as I can remember, so the plans, while totally awesome, aren't what make me come back. It's how you finish your works. I love these tutorials. They really help bring this stuff to life.

Clothes that work as hard as you do.

posted by WorkwearUSA | on Tue, 2014-05-06 18:08

Thanks for this useful

Thanks for this useful article, I'm planing to redecorate my hose, so these tips came in the perfect moment. I'm also thinking about buying some Mataverde Decking and paint it just like that.

posted by happymeal | on Mon, 2014-06-02 06:05

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