In our restoration galleries we present additional information and illustrations of the furniture restoration work we do that hasn't fit into any of the other pages in this section. The conclusion we hope you will draw from all this is that if it is made out of wood, we can most likely help you with it, even if you don't see the exact piece or need you have.
This needed more than a little TLC when it arrived. The marble top was gone, the case was coming apart, the veneer was loose and there were some veneer losses, the condition of the shellac finish was very poor. Our task was to reverse all these negatives and make this stand to be beautiful and functional once again.
These three photos illustrate the "before" condition of this stand. The light areas on either side of the foreground leg and on the lower shelf edge are areas where veneer is lost. It is hard to see what the veneer pattern is on the shelf because of the buckling of the veneer.
By the time this photo was taken the finish had been removed. You can already see the veneer pattern on the shelf better. Obviously there is gluing and clamping being done on the top of the case. Both veneer and structural issues are being corrected by this process.
You should be able to spot five veneer repairs.
A bit distorted (not photographers, remember!), otherwise ready for finishing.
Its looking better already!
Shellac was the original finish on this night stand. We added no stain to the wood. All the color you see is from the wood itself and the shellac we used for finishing. It was darker when it came in because shellac will darken with age. This warm glossy appearance is sure to be very much like the original appearance. The marble is new. Most likely the original was white, but it was long gone when this came to us.
The several veneer repairs which could be seen in the "before" photos above, and even the "after repairs" photos just above, are no longer visible in these "after finishing" photos. That's the idea!
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For at least the arm chair in this set, this was not the first visit to a "furniture doctor." Not sure where the earlier FD got their training, but we were not impressed by their reconstructive surgical methods. We took all sorts of extraneous screws and nails from the corners of the arm chair and did some major rebuilding and regluing. We then refurbished it--along with the other three chairs, and were able to give them all a clean bill of health.
One surgical procedure committed against the arm chair was the removal of the strip of wood to which the seat's upholstery was attached. We could come up with no sensible idea for why that had been done. Needless to say, our customer did want to be able to sit in the chair, so part of our job was to replace the nailing strip. The two photos to the left show the arm chair as it arrived, the photo below shows the intact nailing strip on another chair.
This detail illustrates the condition of the finish when the chairs came in. No obvious problems,but it does look a little tired and lifeless.
This is a top back joint of the arm chair. Some of the odd work that had been done before it came to us can be seen in the dowel holes plugged and moved.
The chairs were all cleaned. We then waxed and polished all of the chairs. What a difference the wax makes!
This photo illustrates two things. First, the wax has been applied and polished. Note the warmth and glow the chair now possesses. Second, the nailing strips have been built back onto the inside of the seat frame. Less visible, all the joints are tight as well.
Ready for the next hundred years!
Imagine sitting in the comfortable overstuffed sofa in the front room, sipping some ice cold soda pop, letting your mind wander as you hear Doris Day singing,
Doris wasn't sitting next to you on the sofa, she was singing through the brand new phonograph player in the very fashionable upright mahogany cabinet across the room.
More than half a century later, that upright mahogany cabinet badly needed some renewing and came to our shop.
The phonograph cabinet clearly has a worn out finish and some obvious repair needs.
The left corner fin had broken away from the cabinet. What is not so obvious is that part of it is gone. It wasn't a simple matter of gluing it back in place, we had to replace the missing section. Once back in place the decoration, also missing on the right fin pictured above, had to be built up and shaped.
The flat top of the lid should have a mahogany veneer. It had been removed, we replaced it.
The speaker horn has a resonating base, which had cracks and part of which was gone. Restoring this was one of our bigger challenges.
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To the immediate right you see the cabinet stripped and repaired. The fins are rebuilt, the decorations reshaped. Wish we had gotten a picture of the repaired horn and veneered top, but they were completed too!
Further to the right you see the fully restored cabinet with new casters and door knobs and the turntable mounted back in place. Ready to send the new generation onto its own sentimental journey.