Not sure how to care for those antique, vintage and fine-wood furniture pieces in your home? Read on for some tips, and you can keep your furniture looking great for holiday entertaining and beyond…
Good quality furniture need proper cleaning to ensure that they are preserved for many more years to come. So why not make this holiday THE season to surprise your friends and family by making sure your house is in proper order and your antique furniture shows appears in pristine condition?
*Photo credit: Lori Ann via Flickr cc
Here are a few ways to get your furniture ready for the holiday season:
1. Get your cleaning kit ready
Cleaning furniture, especially antiques, may require the use of materials that are not readily available in your household. Before you roll up your sleeves and start cleaning, it’s best to check your cleaning kit for all necessary materials:
- A clean duster or a couple of rags (should not have any fibers sticking out that could cause it to get caught on veneers or your furniture’s coating)
- Warm water mixed with a few drops of vinegar
- Good quality furniture cloth
- Quality beeswax furniture polish. Antiques on Old Plank Road in Chicago, a premier restorer of quality vintage and antique furniture, recommends Lord Sheraton’s Beeswax Furniture Spray, which is formulated without silicone, and the pure beeswax is balanced with the natural oils of rosemary, clove, lavender and eucalyptus.
- Clean dry cloth
2. Start by dusting
Using a clean duster or rag, dust the piece of furniture. Dusting not only removes particles from the surface, but it also removes dirt that would otherwise become harder to remove when wet.
3. Wipe it down
*Photo credit: Forest History Society via Flickr cc
Soak a good quality furniture cloth in a basin of water and vinegar mixture. Use the cloth to clean the furniture until you are satisfied with its appearance. A dark-colored residue may come off during this process. If this occurs, wipe down the furniture gently while wringing and soaking the cloth in between wipes until the residue on the cloth lightens significantly. After cleaning, leave the furniture for about 24 hours to completely dry.
4. Use wax
Once the furniture has dried completely, use a clean cloth or rag to dust away any dust that may have settled. Then use a clean furniture cloth of good quality to apply beeswax onto your furniture piece. Use circular motion when applying and don’t hold back. Beeswax helps keep your furniture in good condition and preserves their quality. Furniture polish with beeswax can give your furniture a lasting sheen and texture after regular application. When complete, leave it for about a couple of hours to allow the wax enough time to soak into the wood.
5. Buff, polish, and shine
After a couple of hours, use a clean dry cloth to buff your furniture. Continue doing so until the shine can be seen back onto your furniture piece and the color has started showing back onto the grain. This step may require a serious arm workout.
*Photo credits: Verymom via Flickr cc
Furniture cleaning may not be something that you normally do all year round, but it can surely give a pleasant result to the overall quality of your home. The holidays can be a busy time of the year, but saving a day or two for furniture cleaning ensures that your well-loved antique and vintage furniture will last a long time.
Angie Cole is a fan of everything vintage and admires true old-world craftsmanship. She writes for Antiques on Old Plank Road, a furniture shop that imports and restores European quality antique and vintage pieces.