5 Steps to Distressed Wood Cabinets

Add an easy, distressed finish to a cabinet door with wax and paint.


Materials Needed:

  • dry, clean cloth
  • wood cabinet
  • Matt Chalky Paints (Pale Greyed Blue and Umbered White)
  • paintbrushes
  • pine wax
  • steel wool (fine and coarse)

Step 1

Wipe the cabinet with a dry, clean cloth. Apply a coat of base paint to the cabinet. Option: If desired, use bare wood instead of base coating. This technique works well on both.

Step 2

Brush on the Pale Greyed Blue chalk paint with strokes in the direction of the wood grain. In the center of the panel, use an up and down paint stroke. Paint some areas heavy and some light for an "evenly uneven" look.



Step 3

Apply a coat of Umbered White chalk paint using the same method. Let dry.

Step 4

For large surfaces, apply pine wax with a brush. For smaller areas, use a piece of fine steel wool to apply the wax. The wax will be absorbed by the chalk paint and some of the paint will be removed. The pine wax works as a waterproof protectant.



Step 5

Rub the cabinet surface with coarse steel wool to remove some of the paint and wax treatment. Use a clean cloth to buff the finish and achieve a beautiful sheen.

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