How to Mix Oil Based Gel Stain Colors Using Layers

Pictured: General Finishes gel stain in java

Oil-based gel stains are great for achieving beautiful hand-rubbed finishes, and their thickness keeps them from dripping, running, or spilling. They might come in a bunch of beautiful colors, but what if you’re still feeling limited? All you have to do is choose any two colors you want, then layer them to create your own custom look! Here’s how to finish a piece of furniture by layering different colors of General Finishes gel stains.

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How to Distress General Finishes Milk Paints

persian blue distressed milk paint general finishes

A standard application of milk paint looks great, but what if you want to get more creative? In this post, I’m going to cover two types of distressing you can use to achieve creative, interesting results with your General Finishes (GF) Milk paints (for more info on how to apply GF milk paints and how they differ from traditional milk paints, check out my previous post).

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Should You Use RTA Cabinets for Your Kitchen Renovation?

Bristol Birch cabinet

The prospect of replacing your kitchen cabinets can be daunting, but there are many good reasons to do it. You might be concerned about the sturdiness or age of your current cabinets, or maybe the layout doesn’t work for your specific needs. Whatever the reason, there’s a very good chance that buying ready-to-assemble (RTA) cabinets is a great option for your cabinet replacement project.

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Update Your Home With Wood Carvings

Whether your style is simple or eccentric, an easy way to update the look of your home is with wood carvings. Wood carvings can be used to accent your existing furniture or update the look of your room entirely. They are an affordable and easy way to give your home a finishing touch without a complete remodel. Whether you're using these wood carvings for aesthetic purposes or for their function, they will instantly update the look of your home. Here are a variety of different types of wood carvings and what they are commonly used for.

wood star applique

Appliques and medallions This type of wood carving is typically used for decorative purposes, especially on plain furniture, cabinets, mantles and more. They are intricately carved with lots of detail, making them an instant conversation piece in your home. They can be glued or nailed to furniture as you please for an architectural detail. Popular examples of wood appliques are rosettes, grape onlays, circular medallions and traditional scroll designs.

wooden feet

Feet– Wooden feet are used to update the look of the bottom of your table, chairs or sofas. They are available in a variety of wood types and details to match with your existing furniture. This area is often overlooked by many homeowners, but appreciated by those with fine taste. Wooden feet can also help to make your furniture more stable.

wood pilaster

Columns and pilasters– Wooden columns or pilasters can be placed on ornamental trim or other flat surfaces to your liking. These wooden columns are a great way to bring the rich history of architecture into your own home. You can use larger pilasters or columns to separate rooms and walls for a more open feel, as they generally guide the eye upward to make the room appear more spacious.

wood corbel

Corbels and supports– Wooden corbels and supports blend function and beauty together in your home. Shelves and other structures are supported with these wooden carvings, which also can be used solely as a decorative accent.

wooden baseboard

Baseboards, mouldings and rails– These wooden items can be used to cover up uneven edges, cover the joint between the wall surface and the floor and protect your walls from abrasion and furniture. They also add a decorative touch to your room, which is an added bonus.

wood island leg

Island legs and turnings– Wooden island legs and turnings can be used on tables, and are often used in the kitchen. They are available in a variety of heights to match with the measurements of your table or island. These legs help support the table and also add style to your room.

wooden valence

Valances– Place a wooden valance above your window or door to add dimension to the room. Decorative grooves, patterns and arches on valances are an attractive way to spruce up your windows.

wooden opening

Openings– French Rinceau openings are a lovely piece of architecture that instantly warms your home. This elegant wooden structure often features intricate and elegant details such as an ornamental or floral motif.

wood pediment

Pediments– Wooden pediments are a simple way to transform the look of your doors and windows. Although they are pricier than other options, their elegant appearance is well worth it.

Update the Look of Your Fireplace

Whether you're installing one for the first time or simply remodeling a room in your home, updating the look of your fireplace can change your entire living space. Fireplaces are often one of the focal points of homes and are usually located in the living room. Since they are seen and used by homeowners and guests quite often- especially in the cooler months- it's essential to make sure your fireplace is working properly and looking its best. Here are a few simple ways to update the look of your fireplace.

plinth block

Plinth blocks. Plinth blocks are square pieces of wood that serve as the base of columns, mouldings or pilasters. They add a nice transition from the moulding to the baseboard and add a decorative touch to your fireplace. They are available in a variety of sizes and styles to fit best in your home. It's important to make sure that the moulding is not wider or thicker than the plinth. Some people prefer to create their own plinth blocks, but they are available at most hardware stores and wood retailers.

fireplace mantel

Fireplace mantels. Another way to update the look of your fireplace is to install or change your mantel. These mantels are decorative pieces of framework that are placed above and around the fireplace. They are available in a wide range of materials, including fine woods, granite, stone, brick, marble and more. Wood mantels can be sculpted and carved with intricate patterns and details, setting your fireplace apart from the rest. You can also choose the color of your fireplace mantel- wood mantels can be painted, glazed or distressed for different colors and finishes. White mantels convey a clean look, while a bolder color will certainly make your fireplace the center of attention.

Fireplace accessories. An easy way to update the look of your fireplace is with accessories. Display your favorite photos, antique items and beautiful flowers on your mantel to add a personal touch to your room. Your favorite piece of artwork or a decorative mirror will also add interest to the space. Some people even choose to display their television above their fireplace mantel! Keep any fireplace accessories nearby in a clean and attractive manner, like a handsome log carrier or fireplace tool holder.

Clean. Cleaning your actual fireplace and the surrounding areas will instantly update the look of it. Sometimes a little cleaning and a fresh coat of paint is all a fireplace mantel really needs. Make sure you use the appropriate products and are careful of the debris. If it's best, hire a professional to clean your fireplace and the mantel.

All About Cherry Cabinets

Choosing a type of wood for your new kitchen cabinets may seem like an easy task, but there are a variety of factors that come in to play. The types of wood vary in factors such as price, grain, color and versatility. Cherry wood is a popular choice for kitchen cabinets due to its beautiful color and simple maintenance; however it is somewhat of an expensive option. Here are some facts about cherry cabinets you should take into consideration when thinking of choosing them for your kitchen.

Cherry wood comes in a range of beautiful colors from reddish brown to a deeper red. These stunning red tones will bring light and warmth to your home. Cherry’s interesting grain ages well and will become richer and darker over time. Because of its color, these cabinets look beautiful with contrasting colors such as cream, black, tan and other shades of brown. Because of their darker color, make sure you choose lighter shades for the walls so the cabinets stand out and don’t blend in with the wall. Stainless-steel appliances typically look best with cherry, but you can try out other finishes as well.

Cherry wood is commonly seen in traditional furniture pieces, but can easily be customized to fit in any style of kitchen. This type of wood accepts stain well, so if you’re looking for a variation in cabinets to fit your kitchen’s style, that is one option (although most people prefer the plain appearance of cherry cabinets on their own). Due to the wide range of colors mentioned above, cherry is a versatile option for your kitchen cabinets. Because of its versatility to different styles of kitchen, you won’t need to worry about replacing your cabinets if you decide to sell your home.

Cherry wood requires relatively simple maintenance and is easy to keep up with. It is a close-grained type of hardwood and will resist shrinking or warping better than other woods. It also has a smooth surface that resembles satin. Basically, if you take care of your cherry cabinets, they will last for years to come in your busy kitchen. To keep them looking like new, routinely clean them with mild soap and water, apply mineral oil to replace the finish and always dry immediately.

Cherry can be on the expensive side, so you should explore many options of companies and retail chains when considering these cabinets to get the best deal. The price also depends on if your cabinets are custom, semi-custom or ready-to-assemble. Keep in mind that you are paying more for these cabinets for their quality and durability, so ultimately they are an investment for your home. Since your cabinets will last for a long time and still stay in style, you won’t need to replace them for a long time.

Choosing Oak Cabinets

oak cabinets

Choosing the right type of wood for your cabinets is crucial. The right wood species can change the entire look of your room, so it’s important to read up on the pros and cons of each wood before purchasing. Oak cabinets are a popular choice among homeowners due to their durability and beauty. Here are a few things you should know about oak cabinets before choosing them for your home.

Oak cabinets are very durable. This hardwood will hold up through the slamming of doors, storage of heavy food items, and grease splatters from cooking. Oak cabinets can easily be cleaned with a wipe-down of a wet rag. This makes oak cabinets an investment, since they will stand up to use for years to come.

Oak cabinets can easily be customized to your liking. The neutral wood color can be changed with an application of paint, glaze or stain of your choice (just make sure you sand the wood first to create an even and smooth surface for the substance to adhere to). Oak's natural grain lines add beauty to your room, but can easily be covered if they clash with your decor. So whether you like a natural look or want a more glossy finish, it can be accomplished by choosing oak.

Oak cabinets are also very versatile. As mentioned above, they look great in almost any type of room- including traditional and rustic spaces. They bring a lovely warmth to any space and will stay in style for many years to come.

oak kitchen

oak kitchen cabinets