Pull out the drawers of an unfinished dresser and stain the body of the dresser one color and the drawer fronts another. Select wooden drawer pulls and stain them the same color as the body to add further interest or select metal ones that complement the color selection.
Another option is to stain the top surface of the dresser one color and the rest of it another.
A stool also can be enhanced by staining different parts different colors. Stain the seat one color and the legs another.
Stain the rungs of the stool either the same color as the legs or a third color. For footstools, stain the treads and the risers different, complementary colors.
Because these parts do adjoin, unscrew or separate them before staining, if you can. If not, carefully wipe off any stain that spills onto an adjoining piece and wait for each color to dry before applying the next.
Like stools, the different parts of a chair can be stained different colors to create a unique look. The seat can be one color and the back and legs another.
Depending on the style of chair, elements like the slats on the back and the rungs between the legs can also be stained different colors.
Kitchen cabinetry can benefit from two-tone staining in several different ways. Remove the doors and stain them a different color from the frames.
If the doors have raised trim, the center panel and the trim can complement each other. As with dressers, stained wood handles can further enhance the color scheme.
Tabletops and Other Flat Surfaces
For a more challenging project, create a geometric design and draw it on a tabletop or other wooden surface with a pencil. Use as many straight lines as you can in the design to keep the process simple.
Prevent stain from leaking from one section of the design to another by scoring the lines with a utility knife and metal straight edge. Then, carefully stain each section of the design a different color.