Antique Furniture Care
Wood is an organic substance and each species of wood has its individual characteristics – color, grain, texture and smell.
Every piece of antique furniture is carefully selected. We apply the appropriate finish to each piece according to the characteristics of the wood.
- Do not use spray wax, just dust and rub with a dry soft cloth.
- Polish periodically with beeswax (once a year is ideal).
- For more persistent marks:
- Use warm water with vinegar and rub over with a chamois leather cloth
- Or use mineral spirits with a leather cloth
- Or use a soap-based product with a leather cloth
- Re-wax, polish area with mark
- Do not use harsh chemicals or cleaners on your furniture.
- Light-colored cracks, scratches or gouges may be darkened with wood stain or a maker to make them less noticeable.
- Call us for more specific advice or to arrange repairs.
General Care and Information
- Wood is a natural living product and furniture will ‘breathe’ in response to changes in the atmosphere. Therefore, rapid or extreme fluctuations in temperature, humidity or direct sunlight may cause cracking, splitting and warping. The ideal condition for furniture is a stable atmosphere with fluctuations raging between:
- 40-70% relative humidity (operating a humidifier may help to maintain ambient humidity)
- 59-77° F (15-25° C)
- The color may fade or change slightly in strong or direct sunlight.
- If you leave objects in a permanent position on the furniture, uneven fading may occur.
- Avoid placing next to radiators, hot air vents, air conditioners and open windows.
- Do not place hot or wet containers directly on the surface of the furniture, as discoloration will occur.
- Wipe up any standing water immediately. White spots or rings can form in the finish within 30 minutes.
- If doors will not stay closed or are misaligned, place wooden shims under the front legs of the cabinet as needed.
Fabric & Upholstery Care
- Vacuum regularly or brush with a nonmetallic, stiff-bristle brush to remove dust and grime.
- Pieces in direct sunlight will cause normal wear and fading. Protect from direct sunlight to prevent fading.
- Clean up spills and stains right away to help prevent discoloration.
- A patinated, vintage look will develop over time and should be expected.
- Keep out of direct sunlight.
- Vacuum or dust using a soft cloth dampened with distilled water for routine maintenance.
- Never use detergents, polishes, preserves or saddle soap. They can remove natural oils.
- Most surface scratches will fade over time if you rub them with your fingertips. The warmth of your hand releases natural oils that help marks disappear.
Wooden Furniture Care
- It is ideal to keep wood furniture in a regulated room temperature with consistent humidity. Changes in humidity can cause certain woods to shrink and swell. When the air is humid, wood adsorbs moisture and swells; when the air is dry, wood loses moisture and shrinks.
- Dust regularly using a dry soft cloth.
- Do not put wood furniture near direct heat. In a dry climate, even kiln-dried boards may experience some shrinkage.
- Using coasters will help preserve the wood and help prevent water rings. Dampness and water will damage wood furniture.
- Waxing wooden pieces is recommended if you want to add a bit of shine to a dry piece.
Lacquer Finish Care
- Clean as needed using a soft cloth dipped in warm soapy water or water with a drop of vinegar.
- Never use abrasive kitchen cleaners, paper towels or pretreated furniture cloths on lacquer.
- Fine hairline cracks are inherent to the construction and finishing of the lacquer furniture but will not affect the support or durability of the piece.
- Avoid placing lacquer furniture in direct sunlight, heat or a damp area.
- We recommend beeswaxing lacquered pieces every few years.