Distress Pine Wood with an X-acto Knife

In THIS post I showed you how to easily frame in art that may be too small for your wall. I am showing a simple way to distress your frame or any wood project with an X-acto blade and stain here.

Once your wood is cut to size and painted lightly use an X-acto knife to take out “chunks” of wood on the sides and corners.

Sand a little and then rub on a stain color that you like with a sponge brush. I use dark walnut by Minwax. If you like your stain to “blend” – use THIS tip with baby oil to help you out.

The bright red paint is toned down and the wood is darkened. See the difference?
Set the stained and painted wood in a safe spot to dry. We put ours under the car in the garage.
It is a simple and effective technique that transforms your plain new pine into an old barn wood style.
Happy Distressing!
For more unique paint tips go HERE.


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Lawanna Brown

Holly, good to see you back. You look great. All your fun ideas do too. We had an awesome Summer having you here in Utah. Keep us all motivated with the holidays coming upon us. Never too early to start thinking about fun ways to decorate. love ya, mom


Over the years, I can't believe all the things I passed up because I couldn't find the exact size frame. It never even occurred to me to take pieces of wood and literally frame the piece directly to the wall!!!Love this idea.Marilyn (in Dallas)

Gypsy Heart

What a great idea! You look gorgeous!xoPat


I love to distress, everything looks better aged… except ME! You look great, hope your summer was a great one. As much as I LOVE fall, I'm still not ready for summer to end, but the leaves are falling off and we just sealed the deck AGAIN for winter… it's just around the corner, YUCK!


You are so clever. I have distressed with a butter knife. Never thought of an exacto. Next time, I know exacto where to come cutie pants!

Tabatha McCaffrey

Such a fab frame. Very easy directions. Thanks for the share!Tabatha

Christine Vandormolen

Those frames really turned out gorgeous and you are looking super great yourself!!!! xoxoxo


Great to have you back Holly. Missed your posts. Great project and idea.Cindy

ℳartina @ Northern Nesting

I LOVE how that looks!!

Shabby chic Sandy

I am always looking for new ways to make things look old–love this! 🙂


You are brilliant! I'm stealing your uber creative idea! 🙂


You're so cute!!! What a great project and I'm so glad your back. I've missed you so much!


I love how that frame looks! It looks like an expensive frame that way. I love anything distressed.


Great little project Holly! Welcome back and you look great btw!