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How to Create a Faux Wood Finish on Furniture

Read on for a step by step walk through of the faux finish I created on the top of this set of tables I found at the thrift store.

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The Furniture

I found this set of end tables at Goodwill for $10 each! Total score, but one of the tables had a missing chunk along the top edge that I had to repair, so staining was not an option. They also were not made of real wood, but I thought they could still be useful in this world. The faux wood grain technique was just what these pieces needed!

The best thing about this easy technique is that you can use any chalk type paint that you like.

For this project I used Dixie Belle Products.

The Supply List -

and the color I used for the body of these tables:

Vintage Duck Egg Chalk Mineral Paint


  1. Cleaned the pieces really well. These were found at a second hand shop, and there is no telling what they came in contact with or how much dirt they have seen over the years.

2. Scuff sanded the entire surface with a 180 grit sanding block. This helped give my finish something to bite/ cling to. After I finished sanding I dusted with a lint free cloth.

3. Primed the surface of both pieces. I knew I would be using light colors so I went ahead and used a stain blocking primer - B.O.S.S. I applied two coats, waiting adequate amount of time for them to dry between coats. Then it was time to get to painting!

4. Painting time! My first coat of paint was with the color Sand Bar Chalk Mineral Paint. I applied a coat over the top surface of both tables and allowed them to dry for about 30 minutes to an hour. This is not normally how fast I re-apply coats of paint, but for this technique I want to work quickly to achieve that distressed look. The distressed look comes from the paint being wet and the faux wood tool pulls some of the paint up. Much easier and faster than using sand paper!

I used the Belle Brush to paint these pieces. It is a round natural bristle brush that is great for chalk paints and blending. It's easy to hold and to paint with, too!

If you are trying this technique try it with any two colors you like! It doesn't have to be the same as what I used. Experiment and play in your paint. That is the best way to learn. Dixie Belle has lots of gorgeous colors on Amazon.

5. Before I started on my second coat, I use the Water Mister to mist a small amount of water on the table top to encourage the paints to blend easier.

6. The second color I chose was Coffee Bean Chalk Mineral Paint. Having two colors added depth to the grain I was creating.

I put down random streaks of Coffee Bean on the table like in the image below.

Then I quickly filled in the rest of the surface area with the color Sand Bar and blended by bringing my brush strokes up and down the table top surface to achieve a streaky look like the image below. By keeping my brush and paint moist by using the water mister occasionally allowed my paint to remain damp so it was easier to work with and blend.

7. Time for wood graining - I did not allow any time to dry before using the wood grain tool.I held it with my finger extended with light pressure while rocking it up and down as I slid it from one end of the table to the other to create the different wood effects. Lining up the new rows with the last edge line. This type of paint and this technique is so easy to work with that mistakes can be easily fixed. If I messed up a line that I was working on I just used my brush to swipe it back to the streaks then pulled the tool through it again.

This technique creates a bit of texture in the paint. It actually feels like the grain in wood.

I was really amazed with the final results, and I just can not wait to try this technique again. How cool would it look if I did blues and greens? or reds and oranges? The possibilities are endless!

8. I sealed this set with  Dixie Belle Satin Clear Coat. It was super easy to use an applicator sponge to apply it over the top and a small flat brush along the rest of the tables. I allowed for sufficient dry times before applying my second coat and before using them.

Watch the Clip

I created a short clip showing this method of painting in action that you can watch on Pinterest: Click Here While you are there give my account a follow for more inspiration and more links to fun projects just like this one.


If you give this technique a try I totally want to see! Drop some photos or links to your social media in the comments below. As well as, if you have more questions feel free to drop them below as well.

Need more information on this cool wood graining tool? Check out my post for Featured Tool Wednesday: Wood Grain the Easy Way. Love the idea of creating a faux wood look on furniture? Check out the way I created Faux Stained Legs.

- Paint your art out!




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