Three Finishes for Bird’s-Eye Maple
Pop the figure of this wood using dyes, stains, glazes and topcoats
Synopsis: There are few woods that yield as contrasting appearances as bird’s-eye maple. Teri Masaschi, a professional finisher, shares three ways to finish this exquisitely figured wood: a natural look with oil and a topcoat; a darker version from a base of shellac and glazing stain; and an antique look from dye, stain, and shellac. Find tips for mixing and applying these various finishes.
From Fine Woodworking #163
I never would claim that working and finishing bird’s-eye maple are easy, but few woods can yield such contrasting appearances. At one end of the spectrum is the natural look, with a clear finish bringing out the wood’s three-dimensional quality. In complete contrast is the striking look of antique wood, where a century or more of oxidizing and accumulated patina gives it that certain glow and prominent grain. In between, there is the medium-tone appearance, with the eyes highlighted by the finishing…