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Wood Stain Advice

Tiny Land wood stains are made from 100% food grade ingredients.   It's a tricky business making paints and stains from delicate food colourants.   We have 2 types of stain.  Both are suitable for use on wood, paper, and for dying rice, beans and playdough.  You can also add the colourants to bath bubbles and so much more!  Pretty much anywhere you want to colour is up for grabs! 


One is a dye solution - a transparent, vibrant solution that is fully absorbed by the wood and shows the grain.   The other is a pigment suspension.  Much like a paint, this is a semi-opaque solution that holds the colour in the upper most part of the wood.  Due to it's thickness, you may get away with using less or no primer beforehand.  However always test your applications on a scrap piece of wood before commiting your methods to a project piece. 

If you're unsure whether your stain is dye or pigment you can either look at our UK wood stain singles page, or go by the thickness.  Any stain with white in e.g. a pastel wood stain, will always be a pigment, since it's impossible to have a white dye.

How to use Tiny Land Stains:

Firstly you'll want to sand, prime and clean your wood.  Please refer to our Primer Advice.

Dye-based Wood Stains

As these are very thin, we recommend using a primer beforehand to prevent bleeding into unwanted areas.  If you are dying the whole piece the same colour then you can get away without primer, but the wood will absorb more stain.  We sell our primer cheaply to support you in saving money on dye.

You can dip your wood into a dye bath, which is a quick method, or you can use a brush.  Some colours - such as the lighter ones e.g. Sunshine Yellow- may require more than one coat.  Some dye wood stains are made to be pale such as blush.  Allow to dry completely before applying another coat to ensure even distribution.  This should only take a few seconds or a minute or two.

Pigment Wood Stains

These are quite different from the thin dye based stains and require a different technique.

Using a brush or preferably a cloth, load a small amount of stain and wipe into the wood.  You don't want to use it as you would a paint, for example.  More that you're rubbing or dragging the stain into the wood.  Less is more!

Any residue/excess would just sit on top of the wood and dry unevenly.  So you may with to scrape any residue off.

Allow to dry fully before you add another coat.  This should only take a few minutes.


Since all Tiny Land stains are water-soluble, this means that they can run when water (this includes sweat and/or saliva) makes contact.  So you will need to seal the item if it is to be utilised as a toy or anything other than a decorative item stored in a dry place.  Tiny Land make sealants and provide advice on using sealant

(See your country's shopping page to purchase some)

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