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How to Stain Deer Antlers

Staining deer antlers deepens their color.
deer antler image by CraterValley Photo from Fotolia.com

Whether you are preparing a pair of fresh antlers for mounting or you have a pair of shed antlers that has been bleached by time in the sun, you can alter the color to improve the aesthetic value of the antlers. If covering up a repair is your goal, staining will work well for this purpose also. The color of the stain can vary according to your personal preference.

Wipe the antlers clean with a damp cloth and dry them with another cloth.

Brush white primer onto the antlers with an artist's brush to prepare the surface for stain. Allow the primer to dry for 24 hours in a well-ventilated area before proceeding.

Pour 2 tsp. of antler paint into a small container and apply it to the horns with an artist's paintbrush.

Work in sections. As you finish applying antler paint to one section, wipe it off with a clean, dry cloth.

Inspect the antlers and determine whether or not you want the color to be darker. If so, reapply paint to the section and wipe it off again until you reach the desired color.

Things You'll Need:

  • Damp, clean cloth
  • Dry cloth
  • White primer
  • Artist brush
  • Deer antler stain
  • Clean cloths


Experiment by adding different colors of antler paint to achieve a desired effect.

Wood gel stain can also be used instead of antler paint. Apply it in the same manner as the paint. Priming is not necessary.


  • Practice applying different colors of paint on an inconspicuous part of the antlers at first. You can avoid undesired mistakes this way.
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