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I installed Anderson double-hung, divided-light windows with a pine-clad interior. The rest of the wood trim in that dining room is fir, which stains fairly nicely. A little blotching on the fir doors and trim, but not much. The pine windows however, even after using wood conditioner, came out with some really dark blotches that my wife hates, she says it looks like they're moldy. And although I could live with that kind of variation in the stain, she's not happy. I tested the stain (Minwax Provincial) out on a piece of pine, and it looked fine. But the windows didn't come out the same.

I suppose the worst case scenario is that I could paint a faux finish over the pine, so it looks more like the fir. Right now it's just the window sashes and the frame of the window that are pine. The jamb extensions and casing will be fir. So that's not a lot of wood that would be faux. I'm confident that I could do a decent job with a painted faux look, but I'd rather not have to.

Anyway, so what are my other options to remedy this problem? I haven't put any finish coat on the pine. Would it be possible to bleach the blotches out? If I could lighten up this wood, I might be able to experiment and find a lighter color bleach. But is there any way to lighten this pine after I've stained it?

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  • Bleaching and sanding is worth a shot cost-wise, but don't bet big on the result pleasing your wife.
    – dandavis
    Commented Sep 22, 2023 at 0:12
  • I'd suggest asking over in the Woodworking forum,, but... Pine is notorious for blotching, and how it responds depends on the details of the grain of that particular piece and how it's been sanded and, as far as I can tell, the phase of the moon. My solution was to give up on trying to show the grain patterns (which aren't that great in pine anyway), and apply stain as if it was a glaze or paint rather than removing the excess. It's a muddy brown, but it's a consistent muddy brown that can be ignored.
    – keshlam
    Commented Sep 22, 2023 at 0:23

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