How to Change White Trim to Look Like Wood Grain

Give the white trim in your home an entirely new look with a faux wood treatment. Select a picture or sample of wood you'd like to recreate in paint form; then purchase two paint shades -- one matching the light or background wood, one matching the grain. Clear latex glaze adds a slightly translucent effect to the grain color and extends the drying time, providing enough time to create the faux finish before the surface dries.

Step 1

Cover the floor of the work area with newspaper or tarps. If working in a doorway, place some of the paper beneath the doorway and on either side. Slide the edge of the paper beneath the baseboards, if possible.

Step 2

Sand the trim gently with a fine-grit sanding block to scuff up the finish slightly. Wipe the dust away with a tack cloth.

Step 3

Cover the areas of the walls and floor adjacent to the trim with strips of painter's tape. If possible, slide the edge of the tape beneath the trim or behind the baseboards for a clean edge while painting. If the trim is not yet on the wall, place the pieces on newspaper or tarps. Prop the trim pieces up on blocks of wood, if you like, for easier access to the edges.

Step 4

Pour the lighter of the two wood paint colors into a paint tray after stirring it. Paint each trim piece completely with the light wood color using a paintbrush. Allow the paint to dry completely. Paint a scrap piece of cardboard the same color, allowing it to dry as well.

Step 5

Stir the second paint color and pour some of it into a dry paint dry. Mix in half as much glaze or slightly less, brushing some of it onto the painted cardboard scrap after dipping just the tips of the paintbrush bristles into the glaze. Adjust the glaze mixture with more clear glaze or more paint to change the translucency -- the more glaze, the more translucent the grain color.

Step 6

Brush the glaze blend over the trim in the direction you want the wood grain to go -- long brush strokes along the length of each board, in most cases. Work on only one board at a time; otherwise, the glaze may dry before you complete the grain finish.

Step 7

Go over the wet glaze with a wood grain rocker tool or a graining comb. Drag the rocker or comb through the wet glaze, following the direction of the board to create the grain. Wiggle the rocker or comb slightly to create variations in the grain. If using a rocker tool, rock it back and forth slightly to create changes in the grain and knots. Wipe off the tool on a rag between passes to remove excess grain. Allow the glaze to dry completely before touching the trim.