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When You Need a Restoration Expert
for Antique Furniture


So you think you can successfully restore that solid wood antique rolltop desk by sanding a little here and there and slapping on some stain? Think again! Did you know that by impulsively plunging into a restoration project you may be inadvertently decreasing the value of that desk by hundreds, even thousands of dollars? People who collect and purchase antique items are a particularly persnickety group of individuals. They consider the act of placing value on something old similar to scientific observations made by equally fussy scientists. Specific aspects of an antique need to be correctly established and unmodified. If even one of these conditions is missing or distorted, the antique is no longer considered as valuable as it once was when this condition existed.

Certain antiques are especially susceptible to value-reducing errors made by beginning or do-it-yourself restoration enthusiasts. For example, wood furniture that is beautifully and ornately carved can provide challenges to a non-professional furniture restorer. An intricately designed antique is generally more estimable than one that is simply made and making one mistake on this more elaborate piece may severely alter its appraisal value—for the worse!

Upholstered Antique Furniture
Probably one of the most difficult restorations to perform is on old upholstered antique furniture. Because upholstery is not nearly as durable as wood, it usually needs replaced due to normal wear and tear. While refinishing the wooden parts of the piece may not be too demanding, be forewarned that replaced upholstery can be expensive, extremely time-consuming and sometimes frustrating. Re-upholstering requires numerous tools specially created for this type of job, some of which are costly or hard to find. In addition, the entire process involves several, laborious procedures—removing the old upholstery, replacing worn-out cushions with new cushion material, covering the piece with new upholstery material and repairing any mechanical problems (loose or missing feet, screws, armrests). Upholstering antique furniture is much more than laying fabric over the item and stapling.

Genuine Antiques
To be considered an actual antique, an item must be confirmed to be at least 100 years old. With antiques this old or older, a professional should always be employed to restore the item. The risk of mishandling an antique during the restoration process by a non-professional is high; and once something unique about the antique is tampered with, this action cannot be undone which immediately and significantly diminishes its monetary value. One common mistake beginners make is overdoing the refinishing or restoration of an antique. With old furniture and other old household goods, less is better in regards to antique restoration. Knowing what and how to apply the correct finishes and repairs should be left to the expertise of a professional.

Unless you have restored many antiques in the past and know exactly what you are doing, antique restoration should be professionally done. With the proper tools, workspace and knowledge competency, an expert will not damage the item in any way, nor will the item receive treatment that may decrease its value on the market. In addition, once an esteemed antique is properly restored, it usually does not require any more repair work for many years to come, as long as appropriate care is taken to preserve the antique.

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NYC Furniture Upholstery | Manhattan Commercial Upholstery | New York City Sofa Reupholstery
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