Color Wood With RIT Dye — 6 Comments

  1. Cool post Bob! It reminded me of a piece I did last year. I used ultra penetrating stains from Mohawk to achieve similar results. In fact, I uses them exclusively, although most of the time I use the wood tones. I find them to be transparent, and they can be thinned with alcohol. Likewise, I can stain into the finish of to tone it up as long as the finish has alcohol as the solvent (i.e. Shellac). Not sure if it is appropriate to share a link, but her is a link to the piece I stained for a customer using the primary and secondary color ultra penetrating stains from Mohawk:


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  3. Do you have a sense of how colorfast the dyes are? I’ve been using aniline dyes and feel like the colors fade noticeably after a year or two, even when keeping the pieces out of direct light.

    • It seems to me that some fading is inevitable, similar to the difference between new jeans and jeans that have been washed several times. So far, so good on the frame I dyed last summer, but it gets almost zero sunlight.

      Bob Lang

    • You would have to try and see. My guess is it wouldn’t work-you’d be mixing oil and water. Your alternatives would be to mix some artist’s oil colors in with oil. That’s how I got the color on my Byrdcliffe Linen Press. The complete description is in the original Pop Wood article and in the book “Classic Arts & Crafts Furniture”, but I used artist’s oils mixed with Watco Danish oil and mineral spirits. Or you could dye with Rit, let it get good and dry and use oil as a top coat.

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