Restoration brings out wood’s beauty
Working with wood is one of the most satisfying of crafts. For over 30 years Acorn Furniture owner Peter Feekes has had the pleasure of both creating and restoring wooden furniture. In his workshop on the corner of Grey and Albert St, Peter can be found taking apart, stripping off paint or lacquer and reconstructing many a customer’s favourite but tired pieces of furniture.
Peter has any number of restoration projects underway.
‘‘I get a lot of pleasure restoring a quality piece of furniture, and many of the pieces I restore have been in a family for a long time. They want them restored so they can continue to be passed on to the next generation.’’
He also gets work from people who may be moving into a smaller home or unit and want to keep one or two of their favourite pieces.
‘‘Over time they may have gathered a few superficial bumps and scratches, and the original lacquer may have started to discolour. By stripping off the old lacquer and then applying a wax oil finish, the furniture will look as good as new if not better.’’
Much of the furniture Peter restores is oak or walnut made in the early to mid 20th century, but he does have the odd piece from earlier times, as well as some made from native timber dating from the seventies.
‘‘People are quite surprised when they see how beautiful the wood is underneath the old lacquer or paint, and with pieces that are well made in the first place, it’s quite a simple job to repair damaged parts and even replace areas that have some borer damage.’’
The technique Peter uses involves carefully removing the old lacquer with stripper and steel wool so there is no damage to the wood. Once the wood is cleaned up, it is treated with a Woodoc finishing product. This deep penetrating liquid wax contains a hardener for added protection.
‘‘As the wax penetrates you can see the wood come back to life. It adds depth and enhances the natural grain of any wood and when dusting you only need to use a clean cloth and occasionally re-feed the wood with the wax to revitalise the shine.’’
Acorn Furniture also stocks a complete range of stripping and polishing products for the home handyman and you’ll find more information on his website: acornfurniture.webs.com/
In the shop Wednesdays to Friday from 8.30am to 5.30pm, Peter is also often pottering in the workshop on Mondays and Tuesdays. So if you have a restoration project, call in and see him, or phone 356 5559 and check out some of his before and after shots on Facebook: www.facebook.com/acornfurniture1.
Before and after photos of the type of restoration that can be achieved when using the right products and techniques.