French Polishing

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   All aspects of traditional furniture finishing are undertaken with an understanding of finishes of different periods and a consideration for the patina and colour. 

Removal of stains and marks, blending in of repairs, cleaning and revival, full re-polishing, oil and wax finishes and repairs to painted furniture.

The finishes applied to fine furniture of different periods can vary greatly,  French polishing being only one of several techniques used to achieve a protective and enhancing finish.   The knowledge of the correct finishes used and the techniques required to conserve or recreate them has been obtained after many years working on a variety of finishes on fine furniture, along with working alongside highly experienced polishers.

 

 

 

Generally with Antique furniture it is important to conserve the existing finish and its patina, this original finish is an important aspect of the piece but equally  the condition of this finish can make the difference between a very fine piece and a rather dull undesirable piece.

 What is known as the patina, develops over the full age of the piece and cannot be easily reproduced, you must not be easily persuaded to opt for a re-polish, but neither must you be scared to have the piece cleaned or  revived, as this can help conserve the existing polish

The two examples opposite show finishes which have required polishing and revival whilst retaining the existing colour, underlying polish and patina.

 

Much of the work to finishes involve just careful cleaning or repairs to small areas, repairs to scratches, water marks and stains. Sometimes more intrusive treatment is required Application of reviving solutions which rejuvenate the existing finish to both preserve it and help the beauty of the wood show more clearly by restoring the clarity and sheen of the finish.

Opposite illustrates the effects of the use of a revival solution  along with a further wax finish.

 

 

 

Sometimes  complete finishes including all the preparation work, various stains etc. are used on replacement parts which require blending in. Sometimes complete re-finishing is required although usually as a last resort, most of the time the original finish can be retained to some extent.

Opposite illustrates  a Victorian mahogany extending dining table, having suffered from burn damage. This also required conversion to take an extra leaf , it is not advisable to alter original pieces but in this instance an extra capacity was required and could be achieved in a professional but completely reversible way. Following the conversion and repairs the table required a complete re-polish to its top surface  along with work to the legs and rails.