How to Create Faux Marquetry

The art of creating patterns, mostly on wooden floors, using wood stain is called marquetry. It is a technique being used all over the world since the sixteenth century.

If you are planning to create faux marquetry, you can either pay a handsome amount of money to a professional or you can do the job yourself. Fortunately, creating a faux marquetry requires basic knowledge of geometric shapes and some basic painting skills so you would be better off setting about the task yourself.

Things Required:

– Straightedge
– Lead pencil
– Razor knife
– Masking tape
– Paintbrush
– Wood stain
– Polyurethane


  • 1

    A clean surface is the basic requirement in any task which requires paintwork or stain work. The same holds true when creating faux marquetry. Get rid of any dust or dirt accumulated on the wooden floor in your room. Mop clean the floor several times to ensure complete removal of dust particles.

  • 2

    Using a straight edge and a lead pencil, draw a geometric pattern on the floor. This can be tricky especially if you are not good at using geometric tools such as a straightedge. You may have to make a number of modifications until you come up with the right pattern so keep your calm and be patient. To make the task easier, consider drawing a geometric pattern using straight lines as much as possible.

  • 3

    After you are done drawing the pattern, you need to score along the lines in order to make the lines permanent and to prevent wood stain from  spreading in the neighbouring section which you were going to colour using a different wood stain. Use a sharp razor knife and a straightedge to accomplish this step.

  • 4

    Now you need to prepare the floor for staining. There may be some sections in the pattern which you would like to leave unstained. Mark these sections by masking them off with masking tape. Make sure you do not cover the scored lines with masking tape. Properly mix the wood stain. Carefully apply the wood stain with a paintbrush, ensuring that a certain colour does not spread in the adjacent section of the pattern which you are going to stain with a different colour. Remember to use a different paintbrush for each stain colour. Let the wood stain dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

  • 5

    To finish creating the faux marquetry, apply two to three coats of polyurethane on the stained wood. This will seal off the marquetry pattern, ensuring that it lasts for a longer period of time. Let each coat of polyurethane completely dry before applying the next one.

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