Stuart Nicolson Antiques - SPECIALIST IN THE RESTORATION OF FINE QUALITY ANTIQUE FURNITURE
Examples of antique furniture restoration
 
 
 
 
All my work is carried out to exacting and very particular standards.
I pride myself in continuing on the much dying art of  old fashioned traditional craftsmanship. 
In fact several  of my main workbenches & many of my handtools originate from the 18th & 19th Centuries.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I offer all levels of restoration from small repairs to complete rebuilding of severely damaged pieces.
This may range from regluing loose joints to remaking damaged parts to making complete sections. I also believe that all joints should only be glued using old fashioned animal glue.
I have also completed commissions  for important private clients to make items of  furniture such as bookcases and tables to match existing pieces. I have also made a fine tambour fronted display case that houses the  Royal Charter for Lisburn City Council Offices.
I always try to preserve the original surface & patina of any item that im working on, but am often faced with poor previous restoration attempts and maybe  have no option than to repolish a surface.
I pride myself in preserving the much lost art of Traditional hand French polishing using only the finest shellac and wax polishes.
I always stress in the importance of using the correct materials during restoration and am always sourcing old items of furniture that may be used to provide period timber and original hardware for any repairs.
Should you require any replacements of brassware such as handles
or locks ect I have access to several specialist companies who may have similar items from stock or can even cast an item so you may have a perfect match for your furniture.
I can also reline the leather on fine writing tables or desks as well as re- baizing of card tables.
If you enjoy looking at my site, please click on the Contact us page & let me know, or if you would like any further information about any of the projects shown I would be most pleased to hear from you.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
This marvelous Gillows serving table was brought into the workshop for a check over and a gentle clean followed by a wax polishing
 
 
 
 














This Huge mirror was almost 10 foot in height. I restored this item for 1 of my longterm clients MacHenry Antiques who exhibited it on their stand at the Irish Antique Dealers Fair in the RDS Dublin.
it took many hours of skilled work rebuilding the damaged framework. I then had to patch & carve sections of the carving. The new wood was then coated in gesso, bole & regilded in 24c Gold. The fresh gilding was then distressed.
 







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This was an exceptional chair made by a local Co Anrim craftsman. It is carved from solid Irish bog oak & was especially made for an important exhibition in London during the mid 19thc.
I restored this Chair for Lisburn Museum who I am very pleased to have developed a proud working relationship with over the last 10 years and proudly have it as part of their permanent exhibition.
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 















Here is a very rare Charles II walnut armchair. This is another item I have restored for Lisburn Museum. The chair frame had suffered serious worm damaged. I had to inject the decayed wood with hot animal glue then rebuild the flaking wood. It took a great deal of time to carefully colour & polish the frame. I then upholstered the seat in the traditional manner reusing the old horsehair.
 
 
 


 































This wonderfull William & Mary Oyster veneered chest is the finest ive ever seen. It again is part of an important collection for Lisburn Museum. I had to carefully remove, clean & reglue dozens of sections of loose veneer. I then had to gently clean & wax polish the chest.
 
 
              
                                                                                                     


















Below you will see the pictures taken during the recent restoration of a particularly fine Regency pollard oak centre table. As you can see the various repairs that were needed to the burr oak veneer. As the veneer was near 3mm thick I had to cut some from solid wood. I found burr oak wood turning blanks ideal. I am fortunate to have a very good stockist of such items very close to home, see http://www.wood-shed.com  I also had to patch & carve 2 replacement scrolls for the feet.
 
 
            You can now see the finished table. It took many hours of carefull work colouring
            the patches & replacements to the base & feet. The complete table was 
            then sympathetically cleaned & polished. 
 
 
 
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Stripping a badly water damaged surface with Nitromors.
via YouTube Capture
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French polishing an Irish Spinette
via YouTube Capture
  
 
 
            The freshly polished surface was left to
            harden  for several days before being
            dulled then wax polished leaving a soft
            mellow hand polished finish.
            
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French polishing an antique dinning table
via YouTube Capture
Above is a superb William & Mary walnut bureau retaining a wonderfull patination that was brought into the workshop to have new bun feet turned from English walnut along with  very carefull restoration followed by a gentle clean then  Wax Polishing.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
This is a very fine tripple top George II poole table. I had to splice & carve new sections onto the cabriole legs due to the table previously being reduced in height.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Here is a very fine & important mid 18th C mahogany silver table believed to be Chipendale, As you can see it required extensive restoration.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
To the left is a very fine mid 18th C mahogany Chipendale designed
armchair. The restoration involved the replacement and carving of missing ear pieces as well as several other repairs and carving to the top rail and back splat.
I then had to strip off a very sticky gloss varnish followed by colouring & repolishing using shellac & bees wax.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
This wonderfully small William & Mary chest of drawers with Bible box recieved very sensitive restoration to the areas of damaged veneer.
Great care was taken in colouring the repaired sections of veneer and feather banding as to not disturb the lovely surface patination the chest retained. I also had to have an escutcheon cast by a specialist foundry as
one had come off and was missplaced by the previous owner.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
This is one of a pair of important
Irish mahogany side chairs.
I had to replace this missing ear piece as the previous attempt by a good hearted amature was far from satisfactory due to crude carving on a poor quality softwood.
I choose a nice hard cuban mahogany with a dense grain that was able to be finely carved. The replacement was then skillfully coloured & polished to match.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
This is another very fine George II mahogany silver table.
I had to repair all four corners of the fret work around the frieze & legs. I also had to carve a replacment ear piece.I then  had to strip & repolish the complete table as some previous restorer had given it the spray gun treatment.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Below shows the before & after photos taken of a substantial mid Victorian carved oak console table. Numerous sections of carving had become dislodged & required regluing as well as the patching & carving of several missing sections. The top had to be removed & rejointed also. The thick dark varnish covering the table had to be removed before the table could be French polished, dulled then waxed.
 
 furniture
This wonderfull quality Regency rosewood couch was probably made by Gillows. During the restoration which
involved the patching and carving of several damaged sections then carefull polishing followed by reupholstery I discovered the original pencil insriptions
detailing the date 1832 along with the signature of both the cabinetmaker & his apprentice.
 
 
 
 
 
This huge dining table was  almost 20foot long, it was such a satisfying item to polish. It was made from the most wonderfull quality mahogany and deserved the 80 plus hours spent restoring its wonderfull patinated surface.
 
 
 
                                                                                                                
 
Here is the base of a rather fine Irish mahogany library table with a leather lined top. As you can see I had to replace the missing turnings, before cleaning & repolishing the table. I then had to remove the torn leather & replace it with a top quality light gold cow hide with a gilt tooled border. 
                                                                                                                                      
                                  
This is one of several important & rare items of 18thC Olive wood Maltese furniture from an important private collection I have restored
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