Re-Constructing Home-Part 30: Driftwood & Pickled Oak

Progress at the house continues, with multiple crews bustling in and out this past week. In the mix of productive chaos was our flooring crew. Which could only mean one thing: the time had come to decide on a stain color.

Our last house had beautiful dark wood floors, and I loved them. But something about the way the unfinished, raw white oak looked in our new house pushed me towards a lighter stain. Here’s the challenge with a lighter stain:  we kept all of the original hardwoods in the house and, consequently, had to make some repairs with new wood. New wood absorbs the stain differently, so a darker stain would be more forgiving.


I love a good challenge, so I set out to find a stain that could visually blend the old and new wood but still keep the light and airy feel of natural wood. Minwax offers a fairly large variety of stain—but I felt up to the challenge of combining stains to create a unique look all my own. Like I said, I do love a challenge.

Here is what we tried out (on both old and new wood so we could see how the stain would take):

Weathered Oak

Pickled Oak

1/2 Pickled Oak & 1/2 Driftwood

1/2 White Stain, 1/4 Classic Gray & 1/4 Weathered Oak (not pictured)

1/4 Dark Walnut & 3/4 Pickled Oak

1/6 Dark Walnut & 5/6 Pickled Oak


After much contemplation, we decided on ½ Driftwood and ½ Pickled Oak, which was light and a little warm but also had a slight hint of gray.

Here’s the flooring after the crew finished staining and applied one coat of finish:


We love the look. And I loved the challenge. A decorating win, for sure.


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