I painted a test board with multiple coats on different parts of the wood.
I let the jar of vinegar and steel wool soak over night. Then I painted it on the wood. I didn't see much of a difference between the 1 and 2 coats of tea, but the 2 coats of vinegar solution is definitely more brown. I was looking for more of a grey look, so I opted for one coat of vinegar.
After the vinegar solution, I did more testing. I used whitewash, painted some white and sanded it off, put stain over top of the paint, all just to find the look I liked.
I ended up going for painting the boards white, then sanding it off with an orbital sander.
Afterwards, we used some brackets from the hardware store to mount them together and hang them on the wall.
Then came the paint.
After, I sanded the words a little by hand.
I'm thrilled with how it turned out. It's just what I was looking for.
To see more of the nerd cave, see our renovation blog.