Wood Furniture Restoration Tips
Refinishing your wood furniture successfully requires planning! When your favorite wood chest, dresser, or dining room table needs a repair or fresh coat of stain, the right planning and preparation can make all the difference in ensuring the project succeeds.
Here are wood furniture refinishing tips you probably haven’t heard yet:
- Double Time – Estimate the amount of time you’ll need to refinish your wood furniture, and then double the amount. This will help you account for the unplanned trips to the hardware store and other time required by issues that can crop up during wood furniture restoration projects.
- Adequate Space – You’ll need ample space to spread out while you work. Plan to set up shop in the garage or take over some other room for the length of the project.
- Clean Workspace – Keep your work area as clean as possible for the duration of the project. Any dust or wood shavings can make their way onto your freshly applied stain or varnish, and you’ll need to backtrack to fix the issue.
- Lots of Light – Professional wood furniture refinishers recommend looking at the furniture in full, natural light while working, in order to see that the surface is getting evenly sanded or coated, and to see drips or skipped areas so you can fix them as you go.
- Quality Coatings – Resist the urge to save a few dollars by buying the cheaper stain or lacquer. In wood furniture restoration projects, high quality products deliver high quality results.
- Test Areas – Always test your stain or varnish in an inconspicuous area of the furniture to see how it looks before applying it everywhere.
- Product Prep – Prepare the paint, stain, or other finish to be applied by stirring the liquid rather than shaking.
Restoring your wood furniture takes planning, time, money, and patience, but it’s usually worth it! If you don’t want to spare the persona time, or if you don’t feel you have the space or patience, call on a good professional furniture restoration service in your area and trust the work to the professionals.
Jax Furniture Refinishing and Upholstering is the professional wood furniture refinisher Jacksonville FL homeowners trust with their heirlooms and favorite furniture. We’ve served Mandarin, Riverside, Ortega, and downtown Jacksonville customers for many years, providing high quality dining room table refinishing, reupholstery services, furniture repairs, custom furniture restoration, and more, and we’d be honored to be the best furniture refinisher for your favorite furniture too!
Fine furniture is susceptible to fading, whether from age, sunlight, or both. In northeast Florida, we’re known for sunny weather almost all year, meaning if you live in Riverside, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra, or elsewhere in the Jacksonville area, your furniture could be exposed to more frequent and more direct sunlight than in other parts of the region.
Use these tips from our professional furniture refinishers to address fading and sun damage in your furniture!
- Appearance – Fading and damage from sunlight can create an interesting appearance, causing a weathered or antique look. (Some antique collectors like this, but you should be aware that intense sunlight can also cause the furniture to become weak or brittle.) Sun fading can also cause unevenness and an unkempt appearance. If you don’t like the appearance of your faded furniture, find the best furniture restoration service in your area and schedule an appointment to have your furniture repaired, re-stained, reupholstered, or otherwise restored!
- Restoration – Depending on how much free time and resources you have at your disposal, a DIY furniture restoration job can be enjoyable. You’ll need a clean workstation, adequate space, stripping and sanding materials, protective gear, and then of course the best stain or paint for your furniture. For most folks, when it comes to restoring furniture that has been faded, the best option is to hire high quality furniture refinishers to restore the furniture.
- Arrangement – The best way to prevent fading in your furniture is to arrange the chair, end table, dresser, or other item out of direct sunlight.
- Check-ups – Even when you have your furniture arranged in a way that protects it from direct sunlight, be sure to occasionally check the furniture from all angles to be sure no fading is occurring. You can do this during routine cleaning of your furniture.
Caring for high quality furniture is important if you want it to stay in great shape. This entails routinely wiping away dust and debris that builds up, keeping it out of the path of sun and UV rays, preventing water marks and other dents and dings, and then scheduling professional furniture restoration when fading, water marks, dents and dings do appear. Jax Furniture Refinishing and Upholstering is the best professional furniture refinishing company Jacksonville FL homeowners rely on for their fine furniture, and we’re here to provide outstanding service and craftsmanship for you too!
Hottest Furniture Upholstery Trends
The time has come to have your favorite furniture professionally reupholstered. Maybe it’s faded and worn, or maybe the pets have clawed it in certain areas, or maybe like many other Jacksonville, Atlantic Beach, and Ponte Vedra homeowners, you just want to give it a new look. But how do you decide the best upholstery for your furniture? As one of the best furniture refinishing companies in the area, Jax Furniture Refinishing and Upholstering, we’re responsible for keeping up to date with current upholstery trends and can help you decide the best upholstery for your sofa, armchair, ottoman, and other upholstered furniture.
Here are 3 current popular trends in furniture upholstery:
- Transitional – The “Transitional” style of décor, in which old styles come together with current trends, is popular in all types of design, from interior design to living room furniture. If you have antique furniture that you’re not sure what to do with, it’s a perfect candidate for restoration. A good furniture repair service in your area can refinish the wood features and add fresh, modern upholstery fabric to create a comfortable, contemporary piece of furniture that you can enjoy and display with pride.
- Refreshed & Renewed – Reducing, reusing, and recycling are not just trends – they’re our way of life. Choosing to refinish your furniture rather than discard it is a trend that is here to stay. The best local furniture refinisher can transform your old or antique furniture by applying a fresh coat of stain in a new color or reupholstering your furniture in a bold new fabric.
- Warmth & Comfort – A trend that became hotter during the pandemic is refinishing furniture and redecorating and rearranging the home to increase comfort and warmth. It’s easy to move with this trend and make your home more comfortable, inviting, and warm simply by reupholstering your sofa, love seat, and other favorite furniture. Choose fabrics that are not only “warm” in terms of color and tone, but also in texture. The best furniture upholstery shops can help guide you as you choose the best fabric, colors, and desired changes for your furniture.
Your furniture is an important part of your home, and you should love the way it looks and feels. Don’t wait until your sofa is worn, the dining room furniture is scuffed and scratched, and your favorite chair has lumps in the cushions; hire the best furniture restoration company in your area and let the professionals transform your furniture back into something you love! Jax Furniture is the best furniture refinishing service Jacksonville FL homeowners rely on for their custom furniture upholstery and repairs, and we’d love the opportunity to take care of your furniture as well!
Caring for Chair Caning
Chair caning is an appealing element of many types of furniture, and is widely used in favorite dining room furniture, desk chairs, and even living room furniture. With a few simple tips, you can keep your furniture caning in great shape for ages!
- Use Cushions – An important way to maintain the caning on your favorite chair or loveseat is to ensure padding or cushions are used. High quality cane furniture is durable and strong, but cushions ensure that when you sit on the furniture, weight is distributed more evenly and does not cause strain to individual strands of the cane grasses. If your caned furniture did not come with padding, or if the cushions don’t fit correctly or are extensively worn, a great furniture upholsterer in your area can custom make cushions that perfectly fit your caned furniture.
- Avoid Extensive Heat & Humidity – Don’t keep your caned furniture in a hot, humid environment for extended periods of time. Of course, here in Jacksonville, Atlantic Beach, and Ponte Vedra that can seem like an impossible request! Mildew and mold can ruin chair caning, which is why it’s important to monitor the environment. If you use caned furniture outdoors, bring it in to a climate controlled setting each evening, and if you see signs of mold or mildew, contact a highly rated furniture restoration company for careful cleaning or repairs.
- Cleaning – To clean general dust and dirt from your caned furniture, make a mixture of warm water and a few drops of mild dish cleaning solution (such as Dawn) and use a soft cloth or a soft bristled brush to gently clean away the buildup.
- Repair – Repairing torn or damaged chair caning is a notoriously tricky furniture repair job and requires expertise. If your caned furniture becomes damaged, find the best furniture repair service in your area and call on the professional furniture restoration team to work their magic on your caning.
Jax Furniture Refinishing & Upholstering is the best furniture restoration company Jacksonville FL homeowners trust with their heirloom pieces. Our expert furniture refinishers specialize in detailed repairs and custom work, including chair caning, repairs, upholstering, and more. There are many good Jacksonville furniture repair services, but only one to trust with your own treasured furniture, and that’s us! Trust us with your antique restoration or chair caning repair, and you’ll love the results!
Durable Furniture Upholstery
When planning a furniture reupholstery project, most people want to know how to select the best upholstery for their home and lifestyle. More and more of our customers in Southside, Riverside, Ponte Vedra Beach, and Jacksonville are asking for our expert advice in choosing a beautiful fabric that feels good and will last, even with children, pets, and frequent use.
Here are our tips for choosing furniture upholstery that looks great and is durable:
- Leather – Leather remains one of the most durable and yet luxurious materials available for furniture upholstery. Leather upholstery is the first choice of many homeowners who have kids and pets because it can withstand the general “wear and tear” of day-to-day life and yet is still easy to keep clean and maintain. Handling leather and upholstering furniture with leather requires extensive skill and experience, so find the best furniture refinishing and upholstery service in your area and trust the professionals with the job!
- Wool Fiber BLEND – Wool fibers resist staining, fading, and wrinkling, and when blended with synthetic fibers, become even more durable and better able to be cleaned.
- Cotton Fiber BLEND – Cotton is not ideal for furniture, since it is susceptible to soiling and wrinkling, but it can be blended with certain synthetic fibers to increase its durability and its ability to withstand wear.
- Synthetic BLENDS – So what should cotton and/or wool be blended with to create these desirable, durable fabrics? Nylon is highly durable and strong, as well as resistant to staining. Acrylic resist wrinkling, soiling, and fading. And olefin resists stains, sunlight, and many types of chemicals. The right blends of these fibers together with natural fibers like cotton, wool, or even linen, can create fabrics that are strong and durable while still comfortable and resistant to stain, wrinkling, and pilling, and therefore ideal for upholstered furniture.
Choosing the right upholstery for your furniture is a big decision, and it’s followed by another big decision: choosing the best upholstery service to do the job for you! Custom upholstery projects require skill, time, and attention to detail in order to achieve great results, so focus on finding the highly rated professional furniture refinishing and upholstering shop in your area, and then give them a call to find out if you want to trust them with your beloved furniture.
Northeast Florida is home to many great furniture refinishing companies, but for the heirloom furniture you love, call on Jax Furniture Refinishing and Upholstering. We’re the best furniture restoration service Jacksonville FL residents trust for their custom upholstering, and we’d love the opportunity to take care of your beloved furniture, as well.
Cleaning Furniture After Storage
Many of us rely on attics, spare bedrooms, or even storage units and sheds to store furniture, whether temporarily or for years. When the time comes to move your furniture out of storage and reincorporate it into the house or patio, its guaranteed to require remedial cleaning or more. So how do you clean your furniture after it’s been in storage? These tips from our professional furniture restoration team can help!
- Dust with Clean Cloth – The best way to remove dust buildup from your wood furniture is with a clean cloth. You can use tack cloth, microfiber cloth, or another type of soft, clean towel to remove dust from the corners and crevices.
- Avoid Furniture Wipes and Cleaners – Furniture sprays, wipes, and other products are marketed as effective cleaning solutions, but in reality, they leave behind residue that can just attract more dust and buildup. Avoid furniture cleansers and polishes like these and opt for only a clean, dry cloth. If your furniture is in need of deep cleaning, call on a highly rated furniture restoration company in your area and trust the job to the professionals!
- Pressure Wash (if needed) – If your outdoor furniture was stored in such a way that it was still exposed to the elements, insects, or pests, you may need to pressure wash it. Use low pressure and use mild dish detergent and a bristled brush to detail clean certain areas by hand as needed.
- Check for Problems – Cleaning your furniture after it’s been stored is an ideal time to assess it for problems. Do you detect an odor in upholstered furniture? Or does a leg or spindle need to be repaired, or does padding need to be replaced? If so, schedule time for yourself to handle the repair, or call on the best local furniture repair shop who does high quality work on high quality furniture.
There are many reasons to store your furniture, but when you’re done storing it, sometimes you need to take the time to clean, repair, and refinish it in order to get it up to par again! Homeowners in San Marco, Mandarin, Southside, Ponte Vedra Beach, Atlantic Beach, and throughout Jacksonville choose to call on Jax Furniture Refinishing & Upholstering when their furniture is in need of work. We’re the best Jacksonville FL furniture restoration service and we’ll take great care of your furniture when the time comes to clean, repair, or restore it!
Best Way to Strip Furniture
One of the first steps in your furniture refinishing project is to strip the old wooden furniture of its prior coatings. All paint, lacquer, or varnish needs to be thoroughly removed before you can successfully apply a fresh stain or other finish. In fact, if you skip this step or try to rush it, you won’t achieve the results you want. So, what is the best way to strip your antique furniture?
- Supplies – Find the right stripping agent for your furniture. Even if the label says the product is “safe,” be sure to read the chemical makeup and any fine print to understand exactly what the product will do, how to use it, and what applicators are needed. We recommend not skimping on the quality of the chemical, and carefully reading about the contents to be sure you’re getting not only the most effective solution, but also one that is safe, not just for you (since you’ll be handling it), but also for the furniture itself. Anything too harsh can weaken joints, strip more than just the topcoat, or otherwise damage the furniture’s makeup.
- Safety – Stay safe during your DIY furniture refinishing by wearing the right protective gear. Anytime you apply harsh chemicals, such as in the stripping step, wear goggles or other protective eye covering to prevent chemical spray or spatter from getting into your eyes. We also recommend wearing long sleeves and generally exposing as little of your skin as possible to being splashed by harsh chemicals like those found in most furniture strippers. Also wear protective gloves to keep your hands and fingers from being exposed to potentially caustic chemicals. You should wear gloves that specifically protect against the chemicals in the stripping agent. Likewise, wear a respirator to keep from breathing in harmful fumes while you work. Other protective gear can be worn in addition to these items, but eye coverings, gloves, and a respirator are imperative in protecting yourself while you refinish your furniture.
- Time – Thoroughly and safely stripping all paint and stain from your furniture takes time! Set aside the time to prep for the work, apply the material, let it sit, dwell, cure, etc. You may want to set aside extra time in case any part of the process needs to be repeated.
- Elbow Grease – Your furniture stripping project won’t get far without good old fashioned elbow grease. Once you have the right materials and set aside the time for the job, dig in! Be sure to apply the stripper according to the instructions, allow it to “dwell” for the time needed, and use the right tools and method for removal, all of which should be listed on the container. Don’t try to cut corners, and don’t give less than 100%. A great DIY furniture refinishing job starts with a thorough stripping and removal of the old coats, and elbow grease will get it done!
Furniture refinishing is tricky work, and seems to never go quite as planned for most DIY refinishers. This is one of the reasons so many Jacksonville, Riverside, Ortega, and Mandarin homeowners call on Jax Furniture Refinishing & Upholstering to take care of their furniture restoration projects! There are many good local furniture refinishers, but Jax Furniture is the best antique restoration company trusted by homeowners throughout the area. Our craftsmen are true professionals and know what the job calls for, but beyond that, each of us has a passion for fine furniture and attention to detail. If you trust your wood or upholstered furniture to us for a repair or restoration, you’ll love the results!
Rejuvenate Inherited Furniture
An heirloom chest, table, or desk once owned and cherished by a family member might not exactly fit with your home’s décor. These antiques are high in sentimental value, but what do you do if inherited furniture doesn’t look good in your home? We have three suggestions:
- RESTORE – Often a high-quality restoration can transform a dull or rickety antique into a stunning piece. Trust your heirloom to the best local furniture restoration company and you’ll be astounded at the results! The tarnished chest just needs to be skillfully refinished, and the shredded or floppy cushions on an upholstered chair just need the craftsmanship of a careful upholsterer to make you fall in love with it.
- REDO – If you like one element of heirloom furniture but not another, hire a great furniture refinishing shop to re-envision and redo it! An overstuffed chair in a fabric from three decades ago may not be a good candidate for your living room but imagine what can happen if you recover it in a fresh new fabric. A scuffed sideboard from a century ago can be stripped, sanded, and stained in a bold new color to fit your modern home. Good professional upholsterers and refinishers can work magic on old furniture!
- REPURPOSE – If you don’t know what to do with furniture you inherited from a family member, reimagine it in a new way. An end table can become a nightstand, a hutch or china cabinet can be disassembled and turned into a buffet, and a dining table can transform into a desk. If you can imagine it, a highly rated furniture restoration service can make it happen!
Don’t banish your inherited furniture just because you don’t know what to do with it, or don’t like something about it. Find the best furniture restorer in your area and ask the professionals to help turn it into furniture you love and can use! There are many great furniture refinishers in Northeast Florida, but Jax Furniture is the trusted furniture restoration and upholstery service called on by homeowners throughout Jacksonville, Ponte Vedra Beach, Atlantic Beach, St. Augustine, and San Marco, and we’d love to take care of your furniture restoration as well.
Valuable Antique Furniture Styles
Antique furniture is important to its owner for different reasons. Some collect and appreciate antiques because of the inherent history and story; others simply love the particular aesthetic. Some antique owners don’t know or care about anything other than the fact that their family has owned it for years or generations, an equally valid reason to fall in love with a piece of furniture!
Certain styles of antique furniture are perennially popular, so if you’re interested in acquiring a valuable piece or finding out if your own antique might be valuable, take a look at these 4 types of valuable antique furniture styles:
- Mid-Century Modern – Midcentury homes and furniture are exceedingly popular right now. Works from this period, roughly the mid-40s to the mid-60s, are known for simplicity, clean lines, and bold shapes and colors. If you have a MCM teak desk or sofa, or a tulip chair with original bold-colored fabric, it could be very valuable, and there would likely be very high interest or demand for it.
- Shaker – Shaker style antique furniture is also very popular right now, in large because it is frequently used in modern farmhouse style homes, which are extremely popular at this time, and other contemporary style homes. Shaker furniture is characterized by simplicity, utility, and clean lines, and is valued by and beloved by collectors and minimalist designers and homeowners.
- Craftsman / Arts & Crafts – As the name of the era indicates, there was an emphasis on craftsmanship during this era, not only in furniture, but also in ceramics, woodworking, and all types of handmade works.Furthermore, hardwoods were often used during this period, so if you have a sofa, desk, settee, or chair from this era, it’s likely very well made and valuable.
- Art Deco – The 1920s brought about the Art Deco age, and furniture from this era has an aesthetic that has appealed to every generation after it. If you have a sofa, dresser, or dining table from the Deco period, you probably deeply value it, and if you don’t, there is a collector or afficionado who will!
Craftsman, Midcentury Modern, Colonial, Shaker, Deco, and all other types of antique furniture deserve to be restored to their original beauty and enjoyed! Jax Furniture Refinishing & Upholstering is the best local furniture restoration service trusted by homeowners throughout Jacksonville, Riverside, Ponte Vedra, and the Beaches. If you’d like to have your beloved antique restored, please give us the opportunity to do it!
Cleaners to Avoid on Wood Furniture
Wiping the dust from your wood furniture, positioning it out of the way of harmful UV sunlight, and other actions help keep your favorite furniture in great shape for decades, or even generation. Though you know cleaning is a part of furniture maintenance, there are several products that can severely damage your heirlooms.
Avoid using these three household cleaners on your furniture:
- Rubbing Alcohol – Rubbing alcohol may seem like a relatively “safe” product to use on furniture, especially if it has been diluted with water and applied only with a moistened cloth. However, the alcohol can act as a solvent and damage the finish on furniture and even the wood itself. Avoid using alcohol on your furniture, and if some spills onto it, blot it up as quickly and thoroughly as you can with a clean dry cloth. Call on a great local furniture restoration company if stains or fading appear.
- Bleach/Disinfecting Wipes – At times like this, most of us are particularly careful about keeping our homes free of germs. It makes sense to want to wipe down and spray disinfectant all over your furniture to keep viruses away. However, these products can be damaging to your furniture. If you’re looking for a way to fend off germs but still protect your furniture, consider putting fabric overtop end tables, using tablecloths over your dining room table consistently, and using throws over your upholstered sofa and chairs. You can throw these coverings into the washing machine as frequently as you wish! Avoid covering wood furniture in plastic, however. Plastic can cause moisture to become trapped and therefore damage the furniture, and plastic itself contains elements that can damage the finish.
- Furniture Wipes – Though marketed specifically for use on wood furniture, many types of furniture polish wipes can actually coat your wood furniture in residue, which in turn attracts dust particles and creates a dull finish over time. It’s best to avoid using furniture wipes on your wood furniture, and instead simply remove dust by wiping it down routinely with a clean cloth. If your furniture needs more than dusting or maintenance, call on a highly rated furniture refinisher in your area for a repair or restoration appointment.
Our craftsmen at Jax Furniture Refinishing & Upholstering understand the value of high quality handmade wood furniture – and the sentimental value of furniture of all kinds – and we want to help you keep your favorite antique furniture in great shape for years to come! Homeowners in Ponte Vedra, Atlantic Beach, Mandarin, Riverside, and throughout Jacksonville trust us with their treasured furniture, and we’d love the opportunity to repair or restore yours as well!