Tom McLaughlin’s Arts and Crafts Finish
Thin layers of dye, glazes, and sealers create an aged Arts and Crafts look.
Synopsis: An aged Arts and Crafts finish is a thing of true beauty, but you don’t have to wait for the passage of time to capture this kind of patina. You can come pretty close with thin layers of dye, glazes, and sealers, as Tom McLaughlin demonstrates.
It’s hard to overstate how well an Arts and Crafts finish ages on white oak. With time and use, the rich browns, soft ambers, and dark highlights are all deepened and warmed. But you don’t need the passage of decades to capture this patina. While it’s admittedly nearly impossible to re-create the honest effects of time on a finish, it is possible to come surprisingly close to the same beauty and complexity.
A traditional method is to fume the oak with ammonia, but this can be hazardous to your health and give uneven results. So I take a different…