In his scholarly (and lengthy) video “Authenticating Antique Furniture,” John Bivins presents us with the concept that studying older furniture and verifying its antiquity is, in essence, “above ground archaeology.”
Until the levitation of solid objects becomes more widespread, those of us interested in antique furniture are faced with the fact that some of this stuff is very heavy and is not very often found in a place of maximum convenience.
Some of the best buys in furniture today are items manufactured in America during our “Depression” cycle, which in furniture terms runs from roughly 1920 to 1960.
One of the mysteries of the universe to me is “Why do so many 20th century pieces of furniture have wheels or casters on them?” A clue of sorts can be found in the generic name of many early 20th century items, those that are known as “Colonial Revival.”
This article is a continuation of last issue’s “Take down” column (Don’t fall to pieces when disassembling furniture), in which the steps involved in taking apart a Colonial Revival bookcase secretary for refinishing were outlined and discussed. — Editor
Once you have made the decision to refinish an older or antique piece of furniture, naturally the next thought is the schedule of events that happen between now and the final coat of finish.
Very often in the course of restoring a piece of antique furniture it is necessary to fill a nail hole, plug a crack, fill a divot or even replace a missing area of trim. For this purpose there is a variety of generically called “wood putty” or “wood dough” products available commercially plus the...
When you embark on any project involving older or antique furniture, whether it’s just a simple repair, minor adjustments or a major recondition or refinish, your recipe will call for three main ingredients, the three “Ps” of successful work: product, patience and pride.
The best advice you can receive about bleaching wood is to avoid it if at all possible. Of all the things that are done to wood furniture by amateurs and professionals alike, bleaching is probably the most dangerous to you personally and potentially the most harmful to the wood.
Any time you strip and refinish a piece of wood furniture, somewhere down the line you probably will need to fill a nail hole, patch a crack or fix a piece of trim.