Solid wood drawer unit.jpg

FURNITURE RESTORATION PROJECTS

Bringing beautiful antiques back to life

On this page you can find some examples of restoration work carried out by Thomas Furniture Restoration in Dorchester. For more information about my antique furniture restoration service, please get in touch.

 

VICTORIAN WALNUT DAVENPORT

Circa 1860 - 1880

This piece had major light and water damage to the veneers and polished surfaces, in particular the top panel with gallery rail, which needed a day's work alone to repair blistered and missing sections of veneer and marquetry.

A new writing leather was specially made to emulate the original perished one with a shaped and tooled edge. Walnut knobs were turned to replace missing ones and all surfaces restored and re-polished. 

This restoration would be between £400 & £500 

 
 

EDWARDIAN DUTCH MARQUETRY DESK

This piece required re-designing and converting of the interior, so that a laptop computer could be used in it. This included removing drawers and related panels,  re-making a base panel and inlaying a boxwood line to match the design. The re-design was done in such a way that - if required in the future - the drawers and other sections that were removed can be re-fitted.

A  desk leather was fitted to replace a section of baize that had, in turn, replaced an older leather. A marble panel was also removed from the very  top of the desk and another panel was fitted with a section of 100 year old mahogany and an inlaid line introduced to match the overall design. All brassware was restored and re-plated, and an ornate key was made to an exact copy of the ornate bow handle of an adjacent one.

Finally, the French polished surfaces were all re-polished and beeswaxed, before re-fitting all the brassware.

 
 

OAK DINING CHAIR

This chair had major damage as the back was completely broken off. Normally, a chair like this would be uneconomical to repair, but was one of a set of 12 so was considered worth doing.

A complete new back was made from English oak cutting traditional mortise and tenon joints by hand. Then the show wood was colour matched and polished, before final re-upholstering.

 
 

EARLY 19TH CENTURY MAHOGANY CARVER CHAIR

A typical restoration project

Though this chair was together when arriving at the workshop, it had many nails and screws put in over 150 years of becoming unstable at different times, which had caused major damage to one leg, and to the right-hand arm main support. When these screws were removed, the chair in these areas simply crumbled to small pieces and dust.

 

Each individual section was restored separately, which involved jointing a new section of old mahogany into the top of a leg and arm, then re-shaping and cutting new mortises and tenons.  All joints were cleaned and the piece re-assembled/glued with traditional hot animal glue.

 

Finishing involved plugging various old holes made by screws with handmade mahogany plugs as well as re-shaping and carving the new arm top to match the adjacent one. The chair then had the new wood colour-matched in and polished, finally bees-waxing the complete piece.

 

The seat frame was also restored and completely re-upholstered with new material.

 

This is a medium sized restoration project and would normally cost around £375.00 including all labour and materials.

 

"I would like to express my sincere thanks to you for the excellent work carried out in the restoration and upholstery of my chair, your time and attention in this matter is greatly appreciated."

 

Mr J. Meyer

OAK SEWING TABLE

Restoration of inlaid marquetry panel and all polished surfaces.

LATE REGENCY / EARLY VICTORIAN MAHOGANY BREAKFAST TABLE

This piece was in need of major restoration. All joints in the pedestal had become very loose, and nails and other wedges had been driven in over the years in an attempt to make it stable. Also, due to movement in the timber, there was a lot of veneer damage to restore around the base.

 

The base was completely dismantled, and the joints restored and re-glued. Veneer patches were hand veneered in the traditional way using hot pearl glue. New mouldings were made and fitted around the central pillar. The whole piece was then completely re-finished by hand, and bees waxed.

AMERICAN WALNUT DESK

Made by Howard & Sons, Berner St, London, around 1880 to 1910

This desk was missing its lower rails, and others were badly chewed by a pet dog.  The leather had deteriorated badly, and the overall finish was in need of restoration.

 

New rails were made and others restored, then fitted and colour matched. All surfaces were cleaned, prepared and re-polished, and a new leather was fitted, replicating the original colour and embossed edge. Finally, beeswax was used on the complete piece, and the metal work and drawer runners were lubricated.

VICTORIAN ROSEWOOD VENEERED SEWING TABLE

Extensive restoration required, including missing turned mouldings and knobs, broken and missing sections of veneer, and restoration of all polished surfaces.

VICTORIAN BURR WALNUT DAVENPORT

Extensive replacement of destroyed veneer to top and piano front. Make and replace missing mouldings. Repair various sections of veneer damage. Restore overall finish.

VICTORIAN NURSING CHAIR

Dismantle and repair all joints. Turn front rail to replace incorrect one. Turn and fit missing rosette caps. Re-cane seat and back.

PEMBROKE TABLE

c.1830

Restore and replace missing veneers, marquetry panels and inlaid line.

Remake missing components to drawer.

Repairs to broken sections of drop flaps.

Restore colour and French polish surface of complete table.

WINDSOR STYLE COUNTRY CARVER CHAIR 

c.1850

This chair was found in a barn by the new owners. It was missing a leg and its front crinoline stretcher. A new leg was turned on the lathe using reclaimed beech and a front crinoline stretcher made out of ash, which were then colour matched to the original. The whole chair was then cleaned, revived and wax polished.

EDWARDIAN WRITING TABLE

c.1910

This table had been painted with white gloss paint sometime in the 1970s, probably to blend in with the owner’s home at the time. The customer had run out of patience trying to remove all the paint. Every speck had to be removed with a safe stripper, then stained and traditionally French polished. Handles were cast from an imprint that could be found in the original surface of the drawers.

REGENCY CORNER WASH STAND

The drawer components and stand were missing in the base of this item. New components were made, again using reclaimed timbers. All surfaces were restored and French polished.