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Faux-Bois Dresser




An embossed-paint rocker and a combing tool, dragged through a green glaze, leave a faux-bois (wood-grain) imprint.

We used
Base Coat: Benjamin Moore OC-17 White Dove
Glaze Tint: Benjamin Moore 536 Sienna Laurel

Other Colors to Try
1. Base Coat: Benjamin Moore 1661 Heaven on Earth
Glaze Tint: Benjamin Moore 2142-20 Turtle Green

2. Base Coat: Benjamin Moore 997 Baja Dunes
Glaze Tint: Benjamin Moore Opalescent White

3. Base Coat: Benjamin Moore OC-17 White Dove
Glaze Tint: Benjamin Moore 536 Sienna Laurel

4. Base Coat: Benjamin Moore 803 Lazy Sunday
Glaze Tint: Benjamin Moore 811 Old Glory


  • Imprinted rocker
  • 9-inch paint roller
  • Base Coat: Benjamin Moore OC-17 White Dove
  • Glaze Tint: Benjamin Moore 536 Sienna Laurel


  1. Step 1

    Using a 9-inch paint roller with a 1/4-inch nap, paint the surface in desired color using latex paint. Let dry thoroughly.

  2. Step 2

    Mix 1 part latex paint (pearl finish or satin finish) with 1 part latex or acrylic glazing liquid and 2 parts water. (If using oil paint, mix 1 part oil paint with 1 part oil glazing liquid and 1 part mineral spirits.)

  3. Step 3

    Proceed with any of the patterns, applying the tinted glaze over the dried base coat. Tip: Smooth irregularities as you work (they can catch the glaze and obscure its effect).

  4. Step 4

    Working in sections, apply a thin coat of tinted glaze to dried base coat.

  5. Step 5

    Drag a wood-graining rocker through the tinted glaze, working from the top edge of the surface to the bottom, and gradually rocking the tool, tip to end, just once. Turn the rocker in opposite direction (to change direction of grain), and repeat process to create a second panel next to the first.

  6. Step 6

    Drag a combing tool through the glaze, working from the top edge of the surface to the bottom. Repeat process, alternating knots and straight grains. (For the best pattern, alternate 2 or 3 rows of knots with 2 rows of straight grain.)

Martha Stewart Living, May 2009



Reviews (7)

  • nblack 12 Aug, 2009

    This is a nice way to finish a piece of furniture that would otherwise just be painted over. Does anyone know how to do a faux wicker look?

  • pelican66 11 Aug, 2009

    well now that we all know fran might have to work in mexico, let me paste here what i was going to say about this painting effect.lolol
    years ago we did this on a tabletop before tools were made to help with the graining. we used a comb, feather, skewer and metal tile grout smoother. it took more time but worked really well!
    sorry for sharing that email :)

  • pelican66 11 Aug, 2009

    fran won't be able to paint today b/c he's got a class to attend... he found out yesterday that he might have to pay back conacyt for his school money if he doesn't take a job in mexico for two years. :/ we'll find out soon.

  • remoorman 24 Apr, 2009

    I just did this project and found it was much easier to get the wood grain effect after taking off the handle that comes on the wood grain tool. When using it with just your hand, as he does in the video, the effect looks better and it was a whole lot easier.

  • joshatudd 23 Apr, 2009

    After going to all of the local craft stores where I live and not having any success, I finally found the wood grain tool at Lowe's. It was $6.80. I will be trying this technique out this weekend on my wood framed bed.

  • remoorman 23 Apr, 2009

    I just picked one up from Sherwin Williams for about $6, along with a quart of latex glaze. Together it cost about $22. Very excited to try this out on a dresser of mine!

  • RubyDarling 22 Apr, 2009

    I have been to 3 craft stores, including Micheal's as well as Home Depot and I cannot find the Faux Bois imprinted rocker tool needed for this... Does anyone know where to get this?