Oak is an attractive wood with almost any stain color because it has a strong grain pattern and open pores that absorb stain well, and it does not turn blotchy. However, when choosing a stain color, you must either match the existing color or go darker; you cannot lighten the wood with stain alone.Click to see full answer. Correspondingly, how do you stain oak darker? Luckily, you can stain oak to look as dark as possible. Sand the oak with 120 grade sandpaper. Sand the oak again with 150 grade sandpaper. Wood stain comes in two versions, oil based and water based, and many colors. One may also ask, can you stain wood darker without sanding? Already-stained wood can be further stained a darker shade (without sanding the wood raw) with gel stain. Subsequently, one may also ask, what colors can you stain oak cabinets? How to Choose Cabinet Stain Colors Blonde. Blonde stain tones are most often associated with oak or pine cabinets. Brown. Dark brown cabinets are more current than blonde. Black. Like dark brown stains, black stains are a good fit for a modern kitchen. White. Gray. Cherry Red. Colors. How do you darken already stained wood?To darken the wood without altering it drastically, choose a darker version of the existing color; for example, add depth to light walnut with polyurethane tinted with dark walnut. Dip a tapered paintbrush in the polyurethane and apply a thin coat on the furniture until the brush runs dry.