Ebonizing cabinets

What a boring title… So literal.

Anyhow, hope you’re having a great day.

I spent a significant portion of my weekend (and last weekend) working on my bathroom cabinets.

They started out a very honey yellow wood tone. Not my vibe. They are solid wood so I decided not to trash them.


I’d been wanting to try Jenny Komenda’s cerused oak technique, so I thought this was the perfect opportunity.

I sought out with enthusiasm, placating myself with the nice view outside.

I gloved up and started with the citristrip. The stuff definitely works… Eventually.


I was pretty miserable for awhile there. Use both a metal scraper and a stiff brass bristle brush.

I finally got them clean.

I then applied the aniline dye / denatured alcohol mixture.

It was very brown.
So I ran to Michaels and grabbed more India ink. I just rubbed it on with a rag.


Much better dark ebony color.

Then- shellac.



The shellac really glosses up the finish.  See it next to the unfinished cabinet to the right?


Don’t worry, the gloss fades as they dry, but they now they have a nice sheen.


I then attempted the briwax liming wax, and I didn’t photograph this step.  Needless to say, I quickly found out this isn’t oak.  There wasn’t enough of a hollowed out grain to capture the wax.  So I will just leave these as shellac’ed ebony cabinets.

The ceruse will need to wait for some real oak.

🙁 Sad DIY fail .  Sorry Jenny!
I still need to finish the base cabinet. But I’ll have to wait until the bathroom is accessible again.

A demo’ed bath- both nauseating and thrilling.

Have a great week.


One thought on “Ebonizing cabinets

  1. Been watching as you transform your fresh new digs here from SoCal! I know it will be a beaut when you finish with it (are they ever really finished?)! Love your outdoor views – holy moly is that pretty. Would love to have coffee out there and work on a project outdoors. Looking forward to seeing those countertops installed!

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