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There is nothing like a fine, worn antique to really give your home that warm, comfortable feel. But as you know, antiques are often expensive and fragile. Using these distressing techniques, take a piece of unfinished furniture and create the look of an antique for just a small fraction of the cost.
Apply a stain to the wood, selecting a stain that is a similar color to the antiques you have seen or have in your home.
After the stain dries, use a fine piece of sandpaper to duplicate the natural wear which occurred, studying the antique to show you wear to sand off some of the stain.
Apply a few dents and scratches...carefully and precisely with a file or nail. For excessive wear, such as on the end of a runner, use a file or a chisel.
For an antique finish, soften furniture paste wax over an electric (no flame) hot plate, then stir in oil based stain; apply to the furniture with a soft bristle brush, let dry, then buff, leaving dark paste wax in joints, grooves and carvings to imitate decades of wax and dirt buildup.
And that's it -- always keep in mind that the three most important steps to distressing a piece of furniture are: