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How to apply a brushed on wood grain on our painted baseboards.? Answered

I am restoring the wood trim in the hallway of our 1850 greek revival plantation manor. The baseboards, door frames and doors have been stripped with a heat gun and there are areas where the original brushed on (painted?) grain sample is visible. I want to reproduce the look. I tried using glase and paint and did the riser baseboard on the stair case. I used a comb and it just doesnt have the right look. I m worried that when i get to the intricate door frame which is approximately 6" wide, that the comb will be too difficult to give the right look. I need to have advice on type of paint/varnish/stain to use and what kind of brush to give me the right look. I would contact a professional, but there is nobody around here that knows what I am talking about.


the best option is of course to reveal the natural wood and just varnish that. If the wood is too far destroyed or too hard to strip (try chemically) then manually faking it on an intricate door might be near impossible.

Probably true. Caution: At that age, you're likely to be dealing with lead paint. Take appropriate precautions for safety when doing anything that will produce paint dust.

Websearch "faux wood grain"

If it's anything like my house or other older homes I've seen the technique used on, I think that finish would be a shellac combined with stain. A quick test is to use a small bit of rubbing alcohol on a rag and try to wipe some of the finish off a test area that still has some of the applied woodgrain. If it comes off, it's probably shellac. As to the technique, I well...suck at simulating wood finish, so I can't help on that part of the equation.