Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Common Problems When Refinishing Furniture

There are pieces of furniture that no matter their condition just speak to you.  You walk into an estate sale and the veneer is bubbled and chipping away but no matter how many times you walk away from it your heart keeps pulling you back.  Our hearts always fall for the bad boys and needy friends because underneath it all, "they're good people" and when you have a nurturing heart you just can't help yourself from "saving" them.  Past loved furniture is no different.  They have their own story of the journey travelled through states, first homes, lovers, neglect and renewal.  

When you look close the drawers are wobbly.  Many times they just need to be nailed or glued back together.  Other times their track is sticky this too can be solved by waxing the track or sanding down rough areas on the track but watch for splinters.

Nails come loose and pop out.  Make sure they are properly lined back up and tap them back in.  If the nail hole looks like it is too worn out, try nailing it back together in a new spot or add glue to the nail hole and clamp together while it dries.

Veneer is a tricky one.  You want to make sure to remove any veneer that you can fit a razor blade under.  It is really hard to glue that back down and more often than not the stain will bleed through when you try to paint it so be aware.  Once the damaged veneer is removed fill it in the area with wood putty, let dry and then sand it down flush to the existing veneer.  A to Z Custom Creations does an excellent tutorial on repairing damaged or missing veneer. 

There are scratches and gouges that can be lightly sanded down to diminish the size.  They often are greatly minimized by simply oiling with something like hemp oil to rehydrate the wood.  

Yes, the veneer might not be intact everywhere but with some painting, sanding and re-oiling, it definitely can find love again.  

The hardware super dark and gunky?  Let it sit overnight in white vinegar and then scrub it the next day under hot water.  Often you don't need to spray paint old hardware, just give the former glory a chance to shine through with a good cleaning.

This is not the end of your story old friend.  No stones will be thrown in this glass house so I'll take you as you are with the little chips and you accept that I am humbling trying to heal you one brush stroke at a time.



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