I'm about to replace some wardrobe doors with louvred pine doors, probably
from Wickes, if it makes a difference. They are supplied unfinished "ready
for painting or varnishing" I won't be painting them, but I'm not sure I
want to use varnish either, don't want them too glossy. Would some form of
polish be a better solution, or maybe linseed oil or somesuch? and what
would be the downside?
Look for a matt finish wood stain - one of the microporous
types - and put a few coats on. If you don't and there is any
dampness from clothes that have been put away before they are
fully aired then the doors and laths will absorb the moisture and
warp in time. Likewise a bedroom can be a very damp place with
two bodies emitting moisture and all the windows and doors closed
on a cold winter night.
On the other hand unless you get some good heavyweight doors,
they will probably warp on their own anyway!
Hickson's Decor is a very good stain which I used on a pair of
hi-fi speakers over 20 years ago and they still look as good as
new - but I did put five coats on!
An alternative is Danish Oil. It does take time to dry and smells
a bit nutty until then - and full drying even in a warm house can
take over a week. You will need to recoat them about every five
years or so. When we moved here we bought some Victorian pine
doors that had been removed from a house in the town. We had them
stripped, cut them down to size, and coated them with Danish
Oil - that was in early 1991. I think we have recoated them twice
or maybe three times since and they still look as good as they
did 22 years ago.
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