The Georgian walnut chest on chest come in for restoration , after my client purchased it from a local auction room. The peace of furniture wasn’t to bad condition from being made in around 1730-1740 . The client and I discussed the restoration needed to the furniture including repairs to the veneers on the carcass, the draw and carcass runners were showing their age.and require attention.
My first job was to remove the damaged runners from the carcass and either replace the runners or repair were the possible . The back was removed completely and the pine dust bottoms taken out to give me accaes to the runners. This exposed the damaged runners and I now could easily remove the worn out p8ne draw runners that needed my attention. Theses were still the original runners and were now showing their age from the constant use. Once all the repairs were carried out to the runners to both top and bottom carcass the back was replaced and the the draw runners had the damaged wood replaced to . Once all the glueing were allowed to dry the draws were planed to fit the carcass . The runners were given a tprub of paraffin wax. This would help to prevent future wear and the draws run smoothly .
Now all the repairsto the draws , I could turn my attention to the outside veneers around the carcass and drawfronts. Because it’s early peace if walnut , the mouldings were made cross grain timber . Theses trend to dry out and will require me to go round and glue down any loose mouldings . The veneers were made from saw cut veneers which are thicker than modern veneers , so I cut down solid timber to use in the patching of the missing veneers . Once all repairs were carried out the timber was planned and levelled down the timber was stained with a coat of yellow water stain. This would be allowed to dry and gently rubbed back before the chest was cleaned before waxing. This would help me aging the new wood with the original timber.
The chest was then cleaned using my solution of different liquids that are mixed to together . This would help me remove the dirt from the surface with breaking down the old and possibly original polish underneath the dirt. As Its a conservation job rather than a complete French polish. As the customer wanted the furniture to look in keeping with age rather than something that had looked like it had come straight out of a dealers show room.
The new repairs were given a coat of shellac to seal the new timber .the complete hext was the given a coat of beewax and allowed to dry. On something like this you can to the complete job and go back to the start and buffed up the wax. The new repairs were coloured out to match the original timber along with some older repairs . The chest on chest was given a further two coats of wax before a hard wax and allowed to be buffed up the next day . The handles weren’t removed and were left on during the restoration as I didn’t necessary wanted remove all the dirt around them. Theses were slightly cleaned during waxing of the draw fronts. The conservation of the chest on chest was now finished and looked lovely showing the rich tones of colour from the walnut veneers,and now could be appreciated for the nest generations.