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by Kim Gordon

When BRIWAX asked me to play with some of their products I didn't think anything of it. I get boxes of sample materials and am asked to "stretch the capabilities of our products" from different companies often enough. As a faux finisher in Los Angeles, we are given the opportunity to go a little crazy and do things with sealers, waxes, paints, and our imagination that other folks just don't have the reason to do. We make movies here. We sit around breathing in fumes and come up with some pretty trick uses for all kinds of materials.

I am no stranger to Briwax. I absolutely love the patina that comes only from Briwax and all of the `old school' finishers know the same thing. "Briwax is just the best.. a little goes a long way and it's forgiving" reminded Tony Leondardi, Jr. Lead scenic for AJ, What Lies Beneath. Castaway and hundreds more big time movies.

So when I opened up my giant sample box I already had an idea about some special effects for Briwax and I immediately went to work, ignoring the labels and following general rules of Faux Finishing understanding water and oil based ingredients and using like materials Here are some really amazing results


Out here, making things look old is a profession (unlike plastic surgery which tries to do the opposite). I tired of spongy, "80's" faux finishing which looks busy and unnatural. Traditionally this is done with a big sea sponge (cost $30 +), gallon of glaze ($50/gallon), huge brush ($30) and a REALLY good, artistic hand (priceless).

I tried thinner. sheerer glazes, I tried rags and pouncing brushes but I still had the following problems: the glazes dried too quick, the patina was never right (it looked plastic). and I had to do all the artsy work myself because it was so hard to find people to make it look subtle and nice the way my clients were demanding.

In comes Briwax. I took a wall that was plastered and unfinished (client saves money from not having to paint a base coat), I quickly applied a relatively even coat of Briwax Sanding Sealer which is the most divine material to work with and does not change the color of the surface like other shellacs do. I let it dry (which takes almost zero time), then sloppily applied BRIWAX GOLDEN OAK wax all over the surface with a guy behind me buffing it out with a cheap car buffer. Fast and Easy but I did the hand work so I let my guy do the other wall AND IT LOOKED JUST LIKE MINE!! Miracle. The shellac sanding sealer added just the right amount of protection and evenness to allow the wax to glide on and grab: buffing brought out a natural patina/sheen that had my clients' jaws drop. And because the labor was less expensive it didn't cost as much.


Making walls look old and romantic is getting increasingly popular with our clients. After years of fiddling with sponges, paints, and glazes and having to hire expensive artistic hands to apply the finish, I finally found a solution with Briwax.

Once a wall is plastered and unfinished (client saves $ from not having to paint a base coat) I quickly applied a relatively even coat of BRIWAX SANDING SEALER. After only minutes of dry time, I applied BRIWAX in GOLDEN OAK all over the wall using a car butler to buff it out. It turns out that using the Sanding sealer allowed the wax to glide and grip over the surface taking the artistry out of the job saving the client and me money.

In another house I applied BRIWAX's LIMING WAX over an unfinished (skip trowel) plaster wall for a beautiful antique white color. Liming wax is chalkier and required a very light coat of the Sanding Sealer atop and buffed to a wonderful luster. Nothing looks this good

One of the items in the Briwax box was a little can of LIMING WAX. A client asked for "antique white walls but not yellow". I didn't do the layer of sanding sealer this time, I applied the liming wax directly on the plaster (skip trowel). The liming wax is a bit more chalky than traditional waxes so I applied the sanding sealer OVER the Liming Wax to seal, protect and patina! Yes you can apply SHELLAC SANDING SEALER over the wax and can work over it or leave it as a buffable surface.


I was asked to finish the cement floor in a massive wine cellar in Beverly Hills. A contractor had come in and used a chemical stain on the floor and the client hated it. It looked too "spotty" and didn't have enough "depth". I applied SHELLAC SANDING SEALER cut with about 30% alcohol all over the surface. Next I rubbed on a nice coat of Mahogany Briwax all over the surface, another coat of thinned SHELLAC SANDING SEALER, and an all over smear of BRIWAX DARK BROWN. Buffed with a floor buffer and just stood back. You would never believe this floor! Easy and Fast! The floor buffer just rubbed the wax into the surface and into the other processes creating a durable, beautiful finish. There are products to seal atop if this were a commercial application of course, but I left it as is for their fancy wine bottles to stare down upon.

I'm 'looking forward to playing with the dozen or so other products in my Briwax Box.


After a concrete stain job didn't satisfy the client I was sent in to make the floor look less "spotty" and have more "depth". I applied SHELLAC SANDING SEALER cut 30% with alcohol all over the stained floor. Next, I rubbed on a nice coat of Mahogany Briwax, then another coat of the sanding sealer. A final color coat of BRIWAX in DARK BROWN buffed with a rented floor buffer and just stood back. The floor buffer just rubbed the wax into the surface with the other processes creating a durable, glowing finish. There are products to seal a top if this were a commercial application, but as this is a residence I left it as is and the client still goes on about it.

-Kim Gordon


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