Federal Boston Desk

Federal desk attributed to Boston with mahogany doors and satinwood veneer drawer faces and desk top lid. Dimensions: (h) 51 ½” (w) 41 3/8” (d) 21 ¼”

The desk was severely water damaged leaving the veneered surface lifting and the varnish blanched white. Solvent vapor treatments restored the surface, leaving finish in tact while regaining optical saturation and clarity. Veneer was repaired with animal hide glue. Missing molding was grafted and inpainted to blend with the surrounding surface. Finish was rejuvenated with a reversible resin. View Details and Slideshow >>

Curly Maple Side Chair

Saber leg side chair, lyre splat back, rolled crest rail, cane seat. 19th century. Primary wood: Curly Maple (Acer spp.) Finish: Shellac.

The piece came in with most joints unstable. It had a broken through hand caned seat. Additionally, the shellac finish had severe "alligatoring" which was aesthetically unacceptable. All joints were repaired and reglued, coating was abraded down to the first few layers and built back up with dewaxed shellac. A new cane seat was then hand woven. View Details and Slideshow >>

Conservation of Child's Painted Bedroom Set

Two chests of drawers and two bedside tables painted by client's mother. 20th century. Primary wood: Pine (Pinus spp.) Coatings: Blue milk paint; unknown paint (sailboats).

All pieces came in coated with mold. There were components missing and more unstable. Mold was treated on painted surfaces with a sodium tetraborate solution followed by an aqueous Vulpex solution. Structural repairs were performed and missing rope was replaced and inpainted. Painted surfaces were sealed with aqueous dewaxed shellac followed by Acryloid B67 varnish. View Details and Slideshow >>

Queen Anne Side Chair

Queen Anne Side Chair, pierced splat back, upholstered drop-in seat. 18th century, Rhode Island provenance. Primary Wood: Walnut (Juglans spp.) Coating: Natural resin spirit varnish

Due to this piece's having been stored in unstable conditions, it lost most of it's structural integrity: joints were loose, mortises were fracturing, and drop-in seat frame was broken. Also, finish was fissured, darkened, and obscuring grain. Drop-in seat was repaired and upholstery conserved. Chair frame was disassembled, joints repaired, and entire chair was reglued. Coating was treated with lipase enzyme solution before treating with ethanol to finally remove failed coating. New shellac finish was applied and hand rubbed to sheen. View Details and Slideshow >>

Mahogany Drop Leaf Table

Drop Leaf Table, spiral legs. 19th century. Primary wood: Mahogany (Swietenia spp.) Coating: Shellac

Coating had eight inch section of severe water damage on top. Missing piece of molding. After attempting amalgamation, top coating was chemically removed and recoated using dewaxed shellac tinted with NGR dyes. Piece was hand rubbed to semi gloss sheen. Replacement molding was fabricated, installed, and inpainted to blend. View Details and Slideshow >>

Oak Rocking Chair

Rocking Chair, pierced splat back, cane seat. 19th / 20th century. Primary wood: Oak (Quercus spp.) Coating: Shellac

Piece was received in extremely distressed condition. Both proper left feet had broken tenons, back splat was fractured into three warped pieces, both arms were loose, and cane seat had been broken through. Proper left feet were scarf jointed with new wood and tenons were cut. Back splat was removed, and oak grafts were installed. Both arms were disassembled and reglued. Piece was cleaned with an aqueous surfactant solution followed by a petroleum distillate cleaning. Color loss was addressed with oil based pigmented stain. Finish was resaturated with dewaxed shellac and hand rubbed to sheen. View Details and Slideshow >>

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