Periodically, I’ll make a piece and decide I want to fiddle with milk paint a bit, working with colors and how they change between wet, dry, and then oiled, which is close to the final color the piece will be (I typically add either a finishing cream or shellac over the oil).
I then put two thin wash coats of persimmon over the black on the carcasse.
Then I put tung oil on everything.
I’m very happy with the way the grain of the wood is still pretty obvious in both cases. I was worried even a single coat of full strength paint would hide the grain more than I wanted, but I forgot how adding oil afterwards (and rubbing off the excess oil) makes the milk paint more translucent.
After assembly, this is what it looks like. Note that I forgot to paint the end of the runners that keep the drawers from tipping forward, so I’ll do that next time I get a little milk paint mixed up. I also had to trim the pieces that sit between the drawers, which left them paint-free, so I “finished” them with a Sharpie.
Nothing too special about the box. It’s a dovetailed box with a slanted top. The top has two small strap hinges and a black latch. It’s hard to find black iron screws in the small sizes.
The box is about 4 x 6 x 9 inches. The box is made of ½ inch pine, with some ¼ inch sapele for the lid. The battens on the lid are ash, and the skirt on the bottom of the box is white oak.
The box was painted with three colors of Real Milk Paint. Black Iron first (three coats if I remember right), followed by two coats of Terra Cotta, and finishing with a coat of Persimmon. Then I brushed the paint with a brass brush, selectively removing some of the paint and letting the colors underneath show through.
Once I had that done, I coated it with a few (four or five, maybe?) coats of tung oil. This should waterproof it and lock in the paint.
Overall, it was a fun project, and I learned about distressing milk paint to get an aged look. I need to work on burnishing a piece next to apply more lessons from The Belligerent Finisher but it’s fun trying out new techniques.