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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I needed a new hobby and have always been impressed with wood working and the idea of making my own furniture so I have been working on it. I just made myself a new desk and I am really proud of myself. I sanded it down cleaned it all up applied a wood conditioner and used a walnut stain and the turn out was a pretty blotch free consistent finish. Unfortunately, I was under the impression that wood filler was stainable (I suck) and there is a spot in a noticeable part of the desk that I filled and have obviously learned that stain and filler do not mix. Am I out of luck on this one or can I get in there with a sander in that spot to try and remove the filler completely and try to fill in the stain? Thanks a lot guys.
 

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I assume when you say wood filler you mean wood putty like you fill nail holes with. Some wood putties don't take a stain very well and sometimes the wood conditioner helps prevent the stain from taking. The easiest thing to do is get some touch up markers. Walmart even sells them where they keep furniture polish. If that isn't an option you might get some artist paint either acrylic or oil based and mix some paint the color of the wood and apply it with a very small brush. An art store will call it a liner brush. You might also be able to get some tinting color from a paint store to mix. It's the same colorant used in their machines to mix paint. The last thing I would do is try to sand what you have off. It will never come back as good as you have it now. The stain and conditioner has gotten into the wood and it would take paint stripper and a thorough sanding to bring it back close to what you have. Just add color to the light spots.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply Steve...yes that is what I meant. It's just an Elmer's wood filler/putty. Sadly, the entire desk is stained, the bad spot is practically the last thing I stained. I guess I was kinda nervous that it wasn't gonna turn out and procrastinated on it. I did use a gel stain, would that help if I were to try and sand that putty down and fill in the bad spot? Or will it be really noticeable that I repaired an error? Thanks again.
 

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The thing about a gel stain is it's about as much paint as it is stain. With that product you could put multiple coats of the gel stain on just the putty with a small soft artist brush until it matches the rest of it. Then it can be coated with a clear polyurethane protection. I would not recommend sanding. I think if you get into doing that it will lead to having to strip it and start over. A little scuff sanding between coats when you start putting the clear on but I would avoid any other sanding. More aggressive sanding will make it a multitude of colors.
 
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