Step 5: Dab

man is dabbing woo with cloth and has latex gloves on his hands
Photo: Webb Chappell
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Form a clean cloth into a smooth, fist-size ball. Wearing latex gloves, dip the cloth in the shellac, tap it against the palm of your gloved hand to remove any excess, then quickly dab on a thin layer with one or two short strokes, no more. Allow 10 to 15 minutes for the film to dry, then dip and dab again over a wider area. Repeat until the boundary between the repair and the old finish disappears.
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    Tools List

    • Artist's Brush
      Artist's Brush

    Shopping List

    1. Naphtha
    Cleans the old finish

    2. Denatured alcohol
    Softens old shellac and thins the new

    3. Artist's brush
    Natural bristles only

    4. Shellac flakes
    Also available premixed

    5. Cotton cloth

    6. Alcohol-soluble wood dye
    Darkens shellac to match old finish

    7. Tinted furniture wax
    Blends into crevices better than clear wax