Thursday, January 5, 2017

Before and After: Antique Hall Seat

By Gretchen Sawatzki

Like most furniture projects that come to our shop, the most challenging projects require a lot of intervention. Whether the furniture needs repair, reproduction parts, or custom finishes, it's always fun to see how a project starts and finishes.

Hall seat with broken leg before restoration.
Image by Charles Wiesner.

This antique Renaissance Revival style hall seat walked into our shop in 22 separate pieces with several missing elements and even a broken a leg. The old wood glue that once held decorative elements into place was separating and flaking, and the entire mass of furniture had fallen to the forces of gravity.

The broken foot in two pieces before restoration.
Image by Charles Wiesner.

Parts that had broken or separated at the joints needed re-gluing, and it was evident that of the most difficult elements to repair came from the broken leg and decorative wood elements along the top of the hall seat.

Gluing the leg back together. Image by Charles Wiesner.

Gluing the elements into place with clamps.
Image by Charles Wiesner.

The broken elements were refitted, glued, and then clamped into place. The glue was left to dry over several hours to cure, and once everything was cured and in place, the hall seat was thoroughly cleaned and refinished.
Hall seat after full restoration. Image by Hannah Manning
for Materials Unlimited.

Marble slab on the restored hall seat. Image by Hannah Manning
for Materials Unlimited.

While furniture projects can be challenging, it's always great to see the before and after! This hall seat went from trash to full blown treasure.

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