It took me forever to decide whether to stain or paint and then what color. Because sometimes stain doesn't turn out as planned. Its fussy messy and has fumes. Plus you have to have just the right weather conditions. My French doors were still natural and unpainted 2 years later. I finally got brave and choose a transparent type deck cover stain that shows the wood grain from Behr paint at Home Depot. This is a very easy product to work with goes on so nicely and its matching my existing woodwork, which is all from circa 1912 except the sunroom addition 2013-2014. Also important easy clean up with soap and water when your done! Behr Semi Transparent Weather Proofing all in one Wood Stain and Sealer. Again most importantly NO FUMES. I can see myself using this in my miniature builds. Painted the French doors and one solid door with 2 trial sized cans.