Video:Antique Wood Conditionwith Robert Wilson
Before you buy antique wood furniture, it's important to assess the wood condition. We'll show you what to look for.See Transcript
Transcript:Antique Wood ConditionHi, I'm Robert Wilson, co-owner of Sterling Place and welcome to About.com Home. Sterling Place is a fine home decor and specialty gift shop and we focus on and buy a lot of antiques and vintage items. So I thought I'd share with you today a few things that I look for when I'm out in the field looking for antique furniture.
Study the Exterior of the PieceFirst and foremost, it's very important to admire the piece, look at it from all angles and really study the exterior.
Look for Different Wood Types, Such as VeneerAnd some of the things you need to focus on are the wood and different wood types. One of the things I look for is – if it is a veneer you need to make sure that its in good shape because over time it can get worse. So, here's an example of a veneer top. Some people might not at first glance not know its a veneer. But as you rub your hand over it or look at it from different angles you can feel some bubbling, which is damage over time and could get worse. And an extreme example of veneer being damaged is this and you can obviously see the extreme case here. This has probably been under some water, stored in a barn. The chipping on the side, you definitely want to stay away from that its very expensive to fix that type of repair.
Examine the JoineryOne of the most important things is also looking at all of the joinery and making sure that the piece is not wobbly. Take a table for instance – you can lean down – rock it back and forth. If the whole thing shifts or sways that is indication that the joints are loose and over time it is just gonna get worse. Over time it will deteriorate, so those are some things to consider.
Take a Close Look at the InteriorWhen you look at interior construction, one of the things I look at are the bottoms of drawers. And if you have a dresser take the drawers out, look at them, see if the seams along the bottom are man-made machine made – meaning they used a router so its perfect and you can definitely tell this, versus if they hand planed it , and if you see and hand planing one youll see that there will be a very wide line, about an inch, where they planed it down and fit it right into the groove. Those are usually an indication of about nineteenth century, and worth a lot more. If you also look at some older pieces you'll find that the planks of wood that they used for the tops of dressers or desks are just one single piece. And these are highly sought after and very valuable.
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