Sunday, December 29, 2013

Ceruse technique

I'm usually the last to get on board with any hot trend going around. Well this time I've been working on something a little different. Awhile back I saw an oak piece done in an ebony stain with a cerused finish. I thought it looked cool and did some research. Here are some pics...
1stdibs ebonized

Lane Brutalist from 1stdibs

cerused oak dresser courtesy of  "The Aestate"

How cool would it be to do those old '70's oak kitchen cabinets like this???

So what is ceruse???   "A pigment containing white lead". 
 It actually dates back centuries when people used liming wax to treat 
wood and furniture to keep insects away.
I went to the Ornamentalist to gain info on the how-to. You can do this with any color dye
and I imagine you could tint the color of the white wax. 

Here is the credenza I just finished.

and the After...

I had planned on doing the technique on something oak, as you need a nice raised grain
on your wood. But when I sanded this one down, I noticed this walnut grain was nicely pronounced. I thought I would give it a go!  It's not difficult. They recommend using dye as opposed to a stain. Dye actually penetrates further into the wood and gives it a richer hue. Dyes come in all colors. I got ebony. It comes in a powder form that you mix with water. 
           Here are the drawers all sanded.  Below is the top with the first coat of the ebony dye.
It's important that you keep the grain pronounced. 
           See how the grain just pops out at you??!! I did 2-3 coats of dye. It absorbs and dries quickly. After the dye dried,