Either burnt umber or Vandyke brown makes an excellent pollard oak colour. The colour, in this case, unlike wainscot, should be laid on unevenly, or darker in some places than in others, after the character of the wood; a coarse sponge, moistened, and assisted by the cutter, produces the effect very well. When the masses of colour are properly disposed with the sponge and cutter, it must be softened off with the badger-hair tool, and the knots put in with the end of a hog-hair fitch, by holding the handle between the thumb and fore-finger, and twisting it round; these knots may afterwards be assisted with a camel-hair pencil. A few small veins are frequently found in pollard oak; these may be wiped off in the same manner as for wainscot. When this is dry, the second or upper grain may be put on: this grain occurs in almost all the woods except oak and rose-wood; indeed, it is the proper grain of the wood, with the above exceptions. Some of the first colour diluted will do for this second grain. To put on this grain, the thin, flat hog-hair brush should be dipped into the colour, and the hairs must be combed out to straighten and separate them.
As soon as the grain is put on, the softener should be passed lightly across the grain, in one direction only; this will make one edge of the grain soft and the other sharp, as it occurs in the wood. When the second grain is dry, it may be varnished.
All the other woods are done in a similar manner. The particular character and colour of the shades and grain of the wood must be carefully noticed, and those tools which will produce the effect most conveniently must be selected: for example, the thinnest flat hog's-hair brush will best produce the effect of the grain in rose-wood; the cutter will best produce the effect of the shades in mahogany and satin-wood; the sponge and cutter in pollard oak. Plain mahogany may be very well imitated by properly disposing the shades with the common round tool, with which the colour is laid on, and then passing the badger-hair softener over it in a direction across the stripes. When this is dry, the second grain may be put on, as directed for pollard oak. Burnt umber and burnt sienna make a good mahogany colour.