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Project Showcase — Past Winners

Mckinnon's recreatin room

Bill & Louise McKinnon's Recreation Room

This month, we proudly honor Bill and Louise McKinnon, of Ontario, Canada for their master craftsmanship and wood finishing technique.

Dear Minwax:

We are enclosing pictures of a successful project we hope you will include in your Wood Finishing Showcase. The renovation of our recreation room took over 5 years to complete, but with a little help from Minwax® and a lot of help from our friends, we believe the results are spectacular!

The inspiration for taking on such a daunting task came from a local tragedy in our hometown. A beautiful historic building was allegedly torched by some mischievous youngsters one day and it pretty much burned to the ground! In touring the building after the devastating fire, we were able to salvage only a few things, including some antique oak paneling and oak doors, which had been used to decorate an office space used for "secretarial pools" during the 1920's.

The doors were real gems, and we salvaged a total of six. Each one was at least two inches in thickness, with colorful stained glass windows on the top third of the door and louvered vents at the kick plate. The oak paneling was also quite original, even though it was blackened with soot from the fire.

First, we stripped down the doors and the paneling to remove all charred paint and varnish, using Formby's® Furniture Refinisher. Secondly, we sanded everything down thoroughly using a variety of sandpaper, from coarse to fine grades. Then, we filled the jagged and charred edges using Minwax® High Performance Wood Hardener and Minwax® High Performance Wood Filler. And, finally, we stained the doors and the paneling with Minwax® Wood Finish™ Red Mahogany and top-coated with Minwax® Fast-Drying Polyurethane, satin sheen.