A few weeks, we went to pick out our stain color. We knew we wanted a dark reddish wood color (hey, it's gorgeous and I'm a sucker for cherry wood and the like). We had originally decided on Minwax #225, Red Mahogany - we loved it. Unfortunately though, you have to add a finisher on after you stain - which was going to be an extra $33. So while the regular wood stain was fairly inexpensive, the finisher severely upped the cost. We decided in the end to go with Bombay Mahogany, which was a Minwax Polyshade - it included the finisher with it. It was a bit darker than the original color we had picked out, but we love it nonetheless.
Even with our wood conditioner, the table soaked up the first coat of stain. It was really hard to get it smooth, and definitely made us wonder if we had made a mistake going with the unfamiliar polyshade. We waited six hours though, and when we put on the second coat, it went on like a dream and really smoothed out the surface. We were so relieved! Sean definitely didn't want to have to sand the table down and start over, and frankly, neither did I. It took about 2 hours to stain the pieces each time we did them (though the second time it was probably only an hour and a half), plus we had to wait six hours in between for the stain to dry. So after about 10 hours of staining, this is what we ended up with:
(The legs and crossbeam)
(The final color, top view)
(our new table!!! eeek!)
(size wise? This view is without the leaves)
Isn't she gorgeous? I'm so excited to have a really solid table - it's always been the backbone of my family. This little venture only cost us about $60-70 in the end too, and most of that was stain and sponge brushes (we couldn't use rags because of the texture of the polyshade). My dad said that we should get another finisher (though the name completely escapes me), just because it's a table and should probably be a little more protected than it is with the regular finisher. I need to talk to Sean about, but we'll most likely end up adding it after he buffs out any remaining stain bubbles with steel wool.
Now we're looking for an unfinished wood shop that we can get chairs at...we've decided that we really don't like the chairs that came "with" the table (it's obvious they weren't originally purchased with it). Now...if only we had a place to put our new table...