How do I create the multi-colored tiger eye finish on quilted maple?
Michael Dresdner: This question is a bit ambiguous and was not accompanied by a photo, so I will have to guess at what you mean. Tiger eye is brown and gold, with loads of chatoyance. To do that on quilted maple, start with a dilute dark brown water soluble dye (Van Dyke brown will do nicely.) Flood it liberally onto the wood and wipe it off immediately. Although it is a dark color, a dilute or weak dye will mostly color endgrain. Let the wood dry, then resand it with 220 grit paper to remove the dye from any flat grain surfaces. You’ll find that leaves plenty of color in the pores, accentuating the figure. Now re-stain with a honey amber dye mixed to whatever color and intensity you prefer for the contrast color. This will tint the flat areas in between the dark figure lines, and you will have a tiger eye look complete with flip flop as you look at it from different angles. Top it off with a finish that accentuates the depth in wood — shellac, lacquer, or oil.