I graduated in 1997 in 'Furniture
Restoration and Craftsmanship' obtaining a
2:1 Bachelor of Arts degree with Honours studying for 3 years at Buckinghamshire
University, High Wycombe.
Studies included furniture history, design and construction, ethical
aspects, material science and timber technology/identification along with
intensive hours 'at the bench' developed the foundations for the broad
skills and knowledge required in the profession. Practical skills included cabinet making, traditional upholstery and
polishing, metal work, gilding and specialized skills
connected with the field of conservation and restoration.
valuable foundation, and sadly the more academic side of the
subject does not seem to be embraced/understood elsewhere within
the profession, where it can be misunderstood as a substitute for
traditional experience learning rather than a very valuable addition to
I still work with another graduate of the course on occasional large joint projects.
If you have wondered where my BAFRA logo has gone?: I am not
currently continuing my membership, I am uncertain of it's
benefits to me or my
customers. Once considered the 'holy grail' by
students, few customers appreciate the organisation and consider
my good reputation and qualification a superior motivation.
I was a full accredited member of BAFRA (The
British Antique Furniture Restorers Association).
Choosing a BAFRA member for your restoration requirements in
principle is a good idea although may not mean a fully accredited or
qualified person works on your items, whereas I continue to work to the same high standards and 95%+ of the time I am the one working on your item.
excellent conservator restorers inside and outside organisations. There
are also many 'restorers' (individuals and companies) who you
should be very wary of giving anything of value to!.
More than half of my work is correcting others poor repairs.
Experience: I have worked extensively with other established professionals to gain the
essential experience traditionally sought from apprenticeships. Along
with work on a large range of items, not only furniture, for a variety
of clients; dealers, collectors, institutions and the general public. Principally
such broad but detailed experience develops an understanding of an
appropriate balance between conservation and restoration in whatever
context a valued item finds itself.
Further studies: Antique furniture restoration as a profession benefits from a broad knowledge, as well as the practical
skills. Expanding this knowledge is a continuous ongoing process, often requiring research
for specific project in order to achieve the best results.
A substantial library of reference books aids such research, a list of
recommended publications will be added to this website in the near future.
I am also currently studying BSc(Hons) Environmental Science as a personal interest.