Why You Should Leave Antique Restoration to the Professionals
If you are a huge fan of antiques, you know how thrilling it is to find or own an exquisite piece of antique furniture that has restorative potential. You might want to take on the challenge of restoring your antiques on your own, with the thought of saving the money that you’d pay for restoration experts. With the availability of many how-to books and YouTube videos about antique furniture restoration, this task may seem simple and easy.
Do not be fooled. Whether you are a novice or an expert in home projects, you may not have the proper knowledge and skills to undertake an antique furniture restoration project. Some antiques, especially the more valuable ones, require special techniques, training, and tools to be restored properly.
Below are four main reasons why antique restoration should be placed in the hands of qualified professionals.
· Antique restoration takes time and patience.
Restoring wooden furniture, especially antique wood with intricate carvings or designs, can be extremely challenging and time-consuming. The techniques involved in cleaning and repairing framing and changing the upholstery are usually lengthy and tiring. It often requires an eye trained for details. The entire process of restoring an antique upholstered chair, for example, normally takes around 18 hours.
Professionals understand the time it takes to restore a piece of antique furniture and do not rush things. This avoids mistakes and damage that could compromise the item’s value and design. They are trained to commit the time needed to do a meticulous job.
· Professionals have the proper knowledge and skills.
Knowing what to do, and what not to do, when restoring antiques is essential. Without the proper knowledge, you can make a lot of mistakes and you may unknowingly lower your item’s value in your attempt to restore it. This is especially true with wooden antiques, which can be tricky to handle. If you do not have a trained eye, you could accidentally damage the furniture’s patina and other marks, which prove the age and provenance of the item.
Professionals have undergone the proper training in handling and restoring antique furniture. With years of practice, they have acquired the craftsmanship, skills, and necessary knowledge to breathe new life into worn-out antiques.
· Restoration requires specialised tools.
If you think you can take on an antique restoration project with just the common tools at home, you couldn’t be more wrong. Dozens of specialised tools were used in creating antiques and it usually takes just as many, if not more, to restore them. Normally, you need around 20 tools to restore a single piece of furniture.
For heavier items, you might need specialised lifting machines to finish the job. These tools are also quite costly to buy or rent. Professionals, however, have access to all necessary tools and machines. In addition to that, they know exactly what to use and how to use it, to prevent any damage to your antique.
· Making mistakes can be costly.
Antique furniture is expensive for a variety of reasons, such as age, intricacy of design, or rarity. This is why its restoration can also be pricey. However, trying to save money by resorting to DIY restoration can lead to a lot of irreversible mistakes that can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to reverse (if they are not irreversible). So, if you are dealing with a valuable antique, or if you are not sure of the value of your furniture, it is best to leave the restoration to people who know what they are doing.
Restoring antiques may seem like a fun and fulfilling DIY activity, but it is actually a demanding and challenging project. If you have a sentimental piece of furniture at home or if you bought an antique piece that you want to be restored, then you should call a reputable and experienced antique restoration professional.