Wax on, Wax off


Say it with me, “Wax on, Wax off.” Does it bring to mind Mr. Miyagi from The Karate Kid making waxing motions with first his left hand to wax on, then his right to wax off? Eighties movies were the best!

Don’t worry, I will not be trying to teach you any karate moves from a blog post. Instead, I really do want to talk about wax – furniture wax that is. My purpose today is to give you a brief rundown on what I did and then provide you with additional resources that I found helpful if you have more specific concerns or questions.

1) Wax on:

As I am new to furniture waxing, I have so far used only Annie Sloan’s Soft Wax (AS Wax).

This is what they call a paste wax. Directions read to paint, wax with clear wax, sand/distress, then wax again and buff.

Note though, you can sand before you wax if you prefer. I waxed the Dresser from the Hood, then distressed it. On the Red Table, I painted,  sanded/ distressed the top, then waxed it.

You can apply the AS Wax with an old t-shirt or brush.

I opted for the brush. It applies more evenly and there is less opportunity to apply too much wax. Less is more when you are rubbing on the AS Wax.

You don’t have to go buy this type of brush though. You can use an old, softened paint brush.

2) Wax off:

The directions read to let the wax dry and then buff. I am still not too sure how long it really takes the wax to dry. It seemed though that the longer I let it sit, the easier it buffed.

My arms and fingers did become fatigued from buffing. This could be an indication that I had put on a little too much wax in a few places. To alleviate fatigue, I got this 6″ Ryobi Orbital Buffer from Home Depot.

It worked great on the Dresser from the Hood when I put a second coat of wax on it and on the Red Table’s top.

3) Wax on again?

You don’t have to. If your piece will see a lot of wear and tear, it could help to give it another coat of wax. Some of the information I have read recommends up to 3 to 4 coats.

To give the piece a more aged look you might consider using a dark wax in detail areas or over the whole piece.

For the Red Table, I put the normal amount of clear wax on the brush and then dabbed one “corner” of the brush in the dark wax. Applying it I used a circular motion to make sure the dark was more evenly distributed.

I have kept this brief so as not to duplicate too much of what is already out there. I have the basics in this post but I more importantly want to supply y’all with additional resources for more specific questions.

Please check out the below links. These are all links to either a tutorial and/or suggestions on using AS Wax.

Miss Mustard Seed

Simply Reinvented

Ruby Jean

Annie Sloan

Please leave a comment if you know of any other helpful blog posts/tutorials that you have found. Thanks!


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