Home Improvement Ideas

10 Tips to Give Life to Old Furniture: Furniture Restoration

Written by Team Urban Tree

When we buy a new residence for ourselves, we often carry old furniture with us to our new home. Many pieces of that old furniture may be several years old and may not fit in with the new interior. Similarly, when we repaint or refurbish the entire interior of our house, some of the furniture is bound to look old and out of place. In both these situations, there is a need to restore or refurbish the furniture. Rather than simply opting for polishing or repainting by a professional, you need to apply thought and use some ideas, which would give your furniture a new look while also improving their functionality in many cases. You would be surprised at how these ideas and tips can literally transform your old furniture. Let’s take a look at 10 tips that can give a new life to your old furniture

#1 Wood furniture:

The conventional furniture most households have is made from wood. Over the years, this furniture gets damaged, chipped, or simply becomes dull. To give such furniture some more life and make it look attractive, simple polish or varnish can work wonders. But, to make your job simpler, never apply polish or varnish directly over the polished furniture. Old varnish or polish needs to be first removed with a chemical agent or a remover. After that sand paper the surface, to prepare it for polishing. Any white marks due to water damage may be removed with a buffering solution, made from equal proportions of toothpaste and baking soda. After the surface is clean and dry, apply varnish or polish with a brush. Let the first coat become dry before applying the second coat. Your furniture is sure to look like new after this simple restoration.

#2 Cane furniture:

This type of furniture is very popular for balconies, terraces, and verandas. While cane furniture is fairly durable, it starts to look old and dull over a period of time. For its restoration, it is a good idea to first apply sand paper to clean the surface. Upto two coats of primer are then applied. You finish the job with one or two coats of varnish. Cane furniture looks equally good when finished with oil paint. Flexibility to use a wide range of colors is an obvious advantage. While white color would look attractive on most of the cane furniture, a bright green would be a good alternative for garden furniture to match with the greenery around.

#3 Restoring sofas:

In most cases, the frame of a good quality sofa remains strong for several years. Only the tapestry or the cloth may need replacement. This of course is done by a professional sofa maker but you can select the cloth and color of your choice. While cotton or leather sofas are most common, the alternative material includes linen, silk and wool. Remember to get a few additional foam layers also included in the job, to give your sofa the right feel.

#4 Beds:

Beds normally don’t need restoration. Polishing or painting (in case of metal or cast iron beds) is adequate. Apart from that, change of mattress adds to the comfort. It is also a good idea to fix some good LED light near the headboard as a reading light. This frees-up space and precludes the need for a table lamp on a bedside table.

#5 Change handles and other hardware:

In a lot of cabinets, wardrobes and side boards; the handles and other hardware gets broken or discolored over a period of time. The handles can be replaced with those made from stainless steel or those with chrome or wood finish, to add to the furniture’s elegance.

#6 Antique pieces of furniture:

Antique furniture is normally made from strong and durable wood, and needs only polish for normal restoration. Very often the antique furniture is polished or hand painted in a few colors. Polish needs to be applied carefully to retain the antique look. Painting may be done as a DIY project. Some good metallic paints could be used to give an authentic period finish.

#7 Fixing wheels:

In most homes we have tables, study tables, and small cabinets that need frequent shifting. It is a practical idea to make such furniture movable by fixing wheels on to them. One can easily find good quality wheels in different sizes, which can be screwed on to the bottom of furniture after sawing off the legs. It becomes very convenient to move such furniture around because flooring in most modern homes is done using smooth tiles (vitrified or plain ceramic).

#8 Drawers:

Most drawers in cabinets, side boards, and study table often develop a problem of sliding in and out. This is because the fiber wheel and the pair of metallic channels wear out with usage. The quality of wheel and channels has improved a great deal over the years. By replacing old channels, the drawers would seem to function a lot better than before.

#9 Sideboards and cabinets:

Those sideboards and cabinets, which have plain panels, can be easily refurbished to look different and extremely attractive. Decorative wooden motifs and strips with antique looks are easily available in the hardware shops. These can be easily fixed to the panels of cabinets and sideboards. These motifs and strips can be polished along with rest of the cabinet. The end result is a decorative cabinet distinct from its earlier look.

#10 Kids room furniture:

The furniture in kids’ room is always bright but gets scratched and damaged because of the handling that kids are capable of. This furniture mostly has paint finish and is easy to restore. It requires sand paper to smoothen the surface and then giving it a double coat of the required paint. Removal of the old paint may not be needed in most cases. Different colors may be used based on the kids’ choice. It is a good way to involve the kids too and keep them interested.

Once you involve yourself in the whole process and go through with furniture restoration, the results would leave you amazed at the way your entire home interior would begin to look. Rather than taking the entire furniture for restoration at one time, it is a good idea to make it an ongoing process and take a few pieces needing similar work together. And don’t forget to try your hand at some interesting DIY restoration work too.

About the author

Team Urban Tree

Urban Tree are the creators of magnificent homes in Chennai. Urban Tree is committed to creating world-class homes featuring innovative new styles that are meticulously integrated into every aspect of modern day living.

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