Staining a Cheese Box

Fireplace Vignette with stained cheese box

It has been a while since I’ve posted anything.  I’ve started a bunch of projects, but have stalled on a lot of them.  In some cases, it’s just a matter of getting my wits about me to finish them.  In other cases, I’m either missing materials or am unsure of what I want to do.  One project I have been able to finish is staining one of the cheese boxes I bought.

Cheese boxes

Cheese boxes

I knew I wanted to paint one and stain one, and I wanted to leave one natural for now in case of future inspiration.  For the stain, I wanted something that was a bit dark, but not solid, and would maybe look like it had a little age to it.  So I gathered my supplies:

Staining Supplies

Staining Supplies

I experimented with the bottom first, with a black minwax all-in-one stain.  It was super easy to use, however, you really need to use a brush to get in the little crevices.  Also, it was just too dark, opaque, and not what I wanted.

Staining Fail

Staining Fail

I also realized that the boxes were just too rough to stain as is.  So I broke out the hand sander, and went to town.  I started with a lower grit, and then finished with a higher grit for a smooth finish.  It was difficult to get around all the staples, but I felt it was good enough.  The box pictured here one of the other boxes.  I decided to spray it antique white for a later project to be revealed.

Little palm sander with cheese boxes

Little palm sander with cheese boxes

After wiping them down, I decided to try a different stain– Jacobean by Minwax.  Much better!  I applied it with a foam brush, and was quite generous.  I then quickly, and lightly, rubbed it with a clean cloth.  It looked beautiful after drying overnight, but I wanted a nice sheen so I finished it off with two coats of poly.

Fireplace Vignette with stained cheese box

Fireplace Vignette with stained cheese box

I’ll try to remember to take some more pictures of it, later.  See how you can see the grain of the balsa wood stand out?  I really like the color this stain gives the box.

It’s also a great size- about 15″ in diameter.  It’s just big enough to fit magazines and books into for a quick clean up.