So Jason selected Stickley's Aurora Finish for his Flip-Top Table. Perfect! I already know how to do that one and I don't have to stop and run a dozen experiments to get a different color. Awesome!
So I pull up my handy dandy Stickley Aurora Finishing Recipe & Schedule post to follow my step-by-step notes at the bottom, to the letter.
I mixed up the dye, per my own instructions, and applied it to all the parts today. I let it dry, then put a coat of boiled linseed oil on and went to my Mom's for a pasta dinner. When I got home I opened my laptop and decided to check the aforementioned blog post to see what the next steps are and I decided to just read the post from the beginning to relive my thought process.
My eye catches on the "1 oz powder to 1 quart water." I see that I thought this concentration was too dark and too red... I read on and notice that I triple diluted the mix to get the right concentration to match the Aurora sample. I scroll down to my step by step instructions and see that it says to mix 1oz powder to 1qt water, and realize that I mistyped my own instructions!
I realize I just applied an over-concentrated dye to every part in this project! It didn't look that bad as I was applying it, but that's never a good indicator as it looks completely different when it dries. It didn't look bad when I put the boiled linseed oil on. But after I realized what I did, I could see that it is, in fact, too dark and too red.
My stomach fell down to my feet at the realization that I may have ruined months of work and hundreds of dollars of wood.
I rushed downstairs, grabbed the can of mineral spirits and a rag and frantically rubbed it over every part to dilute the boiled linseed oil. After that flashed dry I took hot water and soaked each part and scrubbed.
It worked! Holy crap it worked! I was able to remove quite a bit of the reddish/purplish tone.
The only problem now is that each part got a different level of dilution, so I'm going to mix the formula correctly this time (1oz powder to 3qt water) and reapply. I don't think applying more dye of a given concentration darkens it further. If you want it darker you have to add more dye powder to the solution. I'll confirm that on a test piece, just to be sure.
So that's my 100th post. I almost ruined the finish on a beautiful table and saved my own ass at the last second. Here's to 100 more! :-P