I was finally able to put my hands on this beautiful piece.
Hmmm, it seems like I couldn't wait to get started on this, but nope.
I wasn't looking forward to tackle this project at all!
I still have a table in the garage full of Citistrip that I didn't remove. The product did little for me to remove the finish and I gave up. That same day I began working on refinishing the table I'm now using in the breakfast area. That one was done, you can check the final reveal HERE.
However, the though of finishing another
piece of furniture was in the back of my mind, untillllll some weeks ago...
updating his room and he isn't too fond of antiques yet. In fact he hated it in there, I don't know why. :/
This buffet was a Craiglist find, you can read about it HERE. It happened two years ago, I wasn't looking for it, someone was giving it away with a wooden screen and since it was very close to my home I picked them up immediately.
From far away it looked OK, but up close you can see the reality. The finish felt all bumpy, the top looked dirty after cleaning it, and worse of all were the pulls, they had been stained ugh!
So, now that I had to take it out from its hiding spot I had to do something to make it look pretty.
I followed my friend's Beck recommendation HERE on how to strip furniture of it's finish. This piece was an "easy case", no paint to remove, only varnish. ;)
These are the materials you'll need:
- Lacquer Thinner
- Mineral Spirits
- Tung Oil (That's what I used for finishing it up, you can use any finish you want)
- Heavy duty rubber gloves
- Steel wood pads ( I used 3/0 and 4/0 to remove this light clear finish)
- soft cloth rags
- Old soft tooth brush
- Metal container
- Safety glasses
- Work outside or in a well ventilated area.
- Wear long pants and closed toed shoes.
- Use a drop cloth or cardboard/newspapers for the many drips.
- Rags and/or steel wool impregnated with chemicals can burst into spontaneous fire. Let them out to dry.
- Dispose of rags and waste in accordance with local regulations.
In a metal container mix lacquer thinner and acetone in a 50/50 ratio.
Using the steel wood pad begin scrubbing the wood, going on the grain direction. This stuff dries quickly, keep a clean rag on the other hand to begin wiping the residue as you work.
Note: I was impatient to begin working on this, I had almost all the materials needed except the heavy duty gloves. A drawer was the first part I tackled. As you can see, those are NOT the proper gloves. I worked on one drawer alone and I had to change the gloves like six times and used two at the time. They're not designed to work with these chemicals! For the remaining of the project I used 3M tekk Protection Heavy Duty Chemical Gloves I bought at Lowes.
This piece, thankfully, didn't have too many nooks and crannies, but for removing the old stain that accumulated in those places I used one of my kids old toothbrush. For the corners I used that metal pick thingy, I don't know its name. Again, dipping the toothbrush in the lacquer thinner/acetone mix, brushing the wood and cleaning with a rag.
This is how the drawer looked after removing the varnish.
After getting rid of the varnish you go can go ahead and neutralize the wood from all those chemicals with mineral spirits.
Of course, I had to go all around the piece, sides, legs and top, doing the exact same steps mentioned above. It was easy and very rewarding to see how all the dirty finish was being washed away with the chemicals that acted like soap, you only need to brace yourself with patience, because it's dirty work.
At this point you can inspect the surfaces to be sure they are clean and smooth before going ahead with the staining. I found a rough spot on the top surface of the sideboard. I used a piece of fine sand paper to smooth it out.
I didn't stained it, I liked the tone of the wood. My final step was to seal it up and protect the wood with Tung oil. I applied it with some old socks I had on hand. Three coats, sanding in between coats with the steel wood. The Tung Oil has some odor I didn't like, but the odor goes away in a couple of days.
I didn't do much to the inside of the buffet. It looks like this was the #65 of who knows how many of them, that same number was on the drawers back.
The only part of the inside I touched, was the top. I cleaned it too.
And here are many of the before and afters. ;)
My post on how the pulls were cleaned is right HERE. The difference is like day and night!
I love the contrasting colors of the wood.
And, oh my goodness, the shoes as I said in my original post, are one of my faves. Did you know they're called "Ferrules" (metal cap attached to the end of a slender shaft for strength or to prevent splitting) or "Sabot" (a French term for the gilt-bronze "shoe" at the bottom of furniture legs), I didn't!
I spent a good amount of time searching this piece on the internet. I wanted to know it's right era. I couldn't find another piece just like this. My best guess is, this is an Art Deco Vintage Sideboard Buffet. I might be wrong.
If you happen to know something about it, please let me know.
When I first got this piece, Beverly, a dear reader sent me an e-mail with this information about it:
"Your buffet is an absolute treasure and with patience and diligence, I feel you'll enjoy it more in the years to come. I want to point out a feature that you may not know about - and that it the hinged top. From your photograph, it was difficult to tell about the pieces of wood or cardboard on the bottom when the top was lifted - but only the finest buffets were manufactured with this feature and the purpose was to provide a hiding place for silver flatware and also your jewelry if you wished to hide it there. Most all were lined with Pacific cloth to deter tarnish and most also had the traditional silverware dividers. It's possible that they were removed and is the reason it appears as it does. I have also seen these spaces only lined with Pacific cloth with no dividers at all; regardless of how you decided to refinish your buffet, having a special place to hide your valuables is a wonderful asset for your family."
Hmmm yeah, I think we're going to enjoy it for years to come!
Thanks for stopping by!
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