Warm and Weathered Charm.
We prefer to call this wood finish “weathered, rustic and sun-kissed”, however “distressed” is the common term for wood with a roughed up or aged look. It is making a resurgence and is definitely a lot more coveted, stylish and industrially edgy than in the recent past where it seemed to mainly dwell in a country setting.
Distressed wood finishes can be born out of using recycled wood and salvaged components, or being purposefully hammered, stripped, burnt and sanded down. One theme consistent in all distressed wood finishes is that it is almost always done to make the piece look more aged than it is and to strip it back to as close to its natural state.
Distress wood pieces conjure up a casual and warm vibe that is anything but stuffy or particular. It is also very forgiving in homes where furniture is not a formality (they don’t shine as bright in a show home setting). They thrive in environments where little kids leave toy dents, where no one cares about leaving marks from coffee cups and spills are not gasp-worthy. The wood actually looks better the more it gets mistreated!
A big, old dining table in distressed wood is perfect for large and casual gatherings. You’ll find that everyone around the table will actually be the most comfortable when they’re not afraid of ruining a pristine surface. Similarly, these weathered pieces are great for side tables, coffee tables, buffet tables. Smaller items like frames and boxes can also add some rustic warmth to a room.
If you have a piece of furniture that you want to distress yourself, then it is just a matter of trial and error. So arm yourself with some paints of your choice, sandpaper, a hammer and some nails and you can’t really go wrong.
Though distressed wood is actually an art form to some and an official type of wood finish, give an old piece of furniture a good old roughing-up and see what you end up with. You may find the process quite therapeutic!
Take a look at some of our favourite distressed wood pieces for some ideas.