Ever get an idea and you are so excited about it that you gather the supplies and learn as you go? This was definitely one of those times! My best friend was working on a coffee table project and mentioned wanting to use gel stain for the top. After all these years of DIY, somehow I had never heard of gel stain! I had been putting off this project since part of the railing is attached to the wall and flooring and I had no idea how to strip the current stain without making a huge mess and potentially ruining something. Gel stain seemed the like perfect way to darken them to match the flooring.
Unlike my husband, whom will spend days, weeks and even months researching before starting a project, I get inspired by something and have to do it immediately. Which led me to a bit of a project fail! I did this project over the summer and you'll see why it took me so long to write about the experience.
A little background on gel stain that I didn't do before starting the project (oops): it is very, very sticky!! WEAR GLOVES and don't use a cloth that you're attached to! Apply a thin coat, wipe off excess stain and let it dry between coats. I did the banister first since it is detachable from the wall. I checked hour after hour, day after day, and it still wasn't dry! After a week, I took it outside to dry in the sun. Luckily that did the trick. However, the part attached to the wall was even more difficult. I knew it would take a long time to dry after my experience with the banister, but did not expect it to take several months!
Yes, months. It still had sticky spots well into October. It was worth the wait though! Despite the issues I encountered, I would do it again. Maybe do some research beforehand though! Have you ever had a DIY or project fail? Hopefully we can use this opportunity to learn from one another!