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Question You've seen ebonized Oak, How about Ebonized Basswood!

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Woodworks by John

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
Joined
Jul 4, 2000
Messages
284
Location
Phoenix, AZ
A short time ago I shared a post and my blog on making a custom frame from Red Oak and ebonizing it with a solution of white vinegar and dissolved steel wool. It turned out quite black while still showing the wood grain. When I did that frame I put some of the solution on Basswood scraps and was intrigued by the results. The color the Basswood turned seemed just right for this painting by my wife (and best client) Diane Eugster. With that in mind a floater frame was made for her painting and my blog: http://woodworksbyjohn.com/2020/04/14/frame-talk-3-ebonizing-basswood/ goes into details of the frame and process for finishing. Granted, it's time consuming but I feel it fulfilled the function of a frame; compliment the art and put it into its own world. I've attached pictures of the finished project, you may need to copy/paste the link. Open to any questions or comments on this project -- it was a good challenge while "socially distanced"!

On The Road by Diane Eugster - 1.jpg On The Road by Diane Eugster -Corner Detail - 1.jpg
 

Woodworks by John

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
Thread starter
Joined
Jul 4, 2000
Messages
284
Location
Phoenix, AZ
Very nice and rich color. Amazing that it reacted so differently.

Love the painting as well!
thanks, I'll pass the compliment on to my wife! I was surprised to see any color change since I didn't think Basswood had any tannin in it -- live and learn right?
 

Gilder

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Aug 18, 2009
Messages
949
Location
Indianapolis
I would add another frame to the outside, possibly in dark purple from the painting.
 
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Bruce Papier

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Apr 25, 2011
Messages
918
One trick to ebonizing woods without much tannin is to give the wood a dose of tea ,then sand smooth and hit it with the ebonizing juice.
 
Last edited:

Nikodeumus

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Apr 21, 2015
Messages
938
Location
Comox, BC, Canada
Another wonderful pairing of two talented artists.
"Very nice work" to both of you. 👍

To anyone else on the thread, if you haven't followed the link to John's website, do yourself a favour and go there.
Have a look at his Woodworking Portfolio and be ready to be inspired by a true craftsman.
 

nzsky

Grumbler
Joined
May 21, 2020
Messages
28
Location
New Zealand
Business
Tile Gallery
Another wonderful pairing of two talented artists.
"Very nice work" to both of you. 👍

To anyone else on the thread, if you haven't followed the link to John's website, do yourself a favour and go there.
Have a look at his Woodworking Portfolio and be ready to be inspired by a true craftsman.
Did so and as a newbie woodworker was very inspired.
 
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nzsky

Grumbler
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May 21, 2020
Messages
28
Location
New Zealand
Business
Tile Gallery
Very nice John. I did a deep dive into ebonising wood for my frames including shou sugi bon, indian ink, various stains and dyes. Settled on black spirit based dye on oak, dye shows the grain while stain covers it somewhat like paint. Left just enough of the oak colour to highlight the rings and medulary rays, quite pleased.
Andrew
 

Nikodeumus

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Joined
Apr 21, 2015
Messages
938
Location
Comox, BC, Canada
Very nice John. I did a deep dive into ebonising wood for my frames including shou sugi bon, indian ink, various stains and dyes. Settled on black spirit based dye on oak, dye shows the grain while stain covers it somewhat like paint. Left just enough of the oak colour to highlight the rings and medulary rays, quite pleased.
Andrew
Pictures?
 

Ylva

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
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Jul 14, 2008
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16,360
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Gloucester, MA
Very nice John. I did a deep dive into ebonising wood for my frames including shou sugi bon, indian ink, various stains and dyes. Settled on black spirit based dye on oak, dye shows the grain while stain covers it somewhat like paint. Left just enough of the oak colour to highlight the rings and medulary rays, quite pleased.
Andrew
I ditto the pictures, pretty please????
 

nzsky

Grumbler
Joined
May 21, 2020
Messages
28
Location
New Zealand
Business
Tile Gallery
I ditto the pictures, pretty please????
Here you go, I've made some wider ones too that I think I'll wire brush like the one on the right, like the effect. I could have purchased pre made raw oak mouldings at 3 times the price but there wasn't enough stock for my run and wanted to save money (poor artist). New to woodworking too so working on the skills to make fancier ones. For now I like the real hardwood hand crafted look :)
 

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