Restoring Period Furniture With Antique Style Hardware

Antique, or period, furniture has a distinct appearance. Yet, few pieces are truly pristine. If you come in possession of such a piece, the slightly dirty patina and dented hardware indicate that some restoration is essential. However, refurbishing antique furniture is not a uniform process, and a few points must be kept in mind.

When it comes to antique furniture, there are two approaches to restoration: modernizing it or retaining the period look. The latter typically requires less work, while the former can have a garish, jarring appearance – an amalgamation of period shapes and modern finishes and hardware. On a basic level, the antique furniture, to keep its period look, needs cleaning, new hardware, and perhaps a new finish. Either way, a less invasive approach is recommended for restoration, as changing the furniture too much can devalue it.

Finding antique-style hardware is a challenge, but finishing presents far more complications. Not all antique finishes are identical, and before you strip it and add a new one, determine if the existing one is shellac, lacquer, or varnish, or a custom, painted finish a craftsman would have specifically created. Dirt, on the other hand, may simply be obscuring the true look of the finish, and cleaning, first, is recommended, particularly with a non oil-based product. If the wood is still uneven after cleaning, a finish may be needed, and like a cleaner, the stain should not be oil based. Why avoid oil-based products? Although the effects may not be immediate, the surface may oxidize years down the line, taking on a mottled appearance.

Hardware is a particularly crucial aspect of antique furniture restoration, and not all handles, knobs, or pulls can be used with all pieces. Save for the precise fit, antique hardware has a distinct appearance, one reflecting the architecture of its day. While modern hardware tends to have a versatile, smooth look and feel, such a style seems anachronistic when placed against the period shapes, contours, and finishes.

Tropitone Patio Furniture – Style Meets Comfort

Over 50 Years of Comfort

For over 50 Years of Comfort For over 50 years, Tropitone patio furniture has stood for elegant style, quality, and lasting comfort. When the company was founded in 1954, by Mr. Bert Baker, a retired engineer, he took his years of experience in both the aerospace and furniture industries and started using aluminum as a material of choice for his outdoor furniture. What quickly evolved, was a company committed to delivering comfortable product, innovative designs and value. Today, many of Mr. Baker’s design and manufacturing systems have been widely adopted by others in the industry.

Quality Materials

Since the beginning, Tropitone has used the highest quality materials. All of their materials are selected for long-lasting durability and style. Their pure aluminum frames, weather-resistant fabrics, and solid fittings and hardware, all deliver materials that are uncompromising.

Great Design

Another important element with Tropitone outdoor patio furniture is their design. Each hand-crafted piece prides itself to an aesthetic that pays close attention to comfort, scale, proportion and detail. This is why each Tropitone piece will always look incredible under any setting – whether its on the deck, in the backyard, by pool or simply on the front porch. Their passion for design and detail is simply unmatched.

If you’re looking for quality patio furniture that you can rely and trust for years to come, then you should seriously consider Tropitone. With over 40 different furniture styles and hundreds of fabrics to choose from, Tropitone has something for everyone’s needs and tastes.

It’s Like New! – Small Retouches to Make OK Furniture Look Amazing

When furnishing your home, whether you are re-decorating, moving in to a new house, or need additions to your current house and home furniture, you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars on OK furniture that you can buy from second-hand stores or popular websites like Craigslist and eBay. There are some essential timeless pieces of furniture that will always look amazing with just small retouches and some effort put into cleaning it thoroughly. So from personal experience, don’t give up on used OK furniture because there are so many alternatives to retouching.

Some problems that we encounter when buying used furniture are chipped corners, old paint, bad smells, stains, and dirt. But these can be fixed so easily that you will impress yourself with your skills when you buy OK furniture and turn it into amazing pieces of décor for your home.

The basics steps are:

Clean and wash thoroughly! You want all the yucky germs out from your nice and comfy home. Use antibacterial soaps to really get the grime and bacteria out of every inch.
If you are buying a piece of wood furniture, buy antibacterial wet towels and get it nice and clean. Make sure that it won’t damage the paint if you are not planning on retouching the paint. To make it shiny, you can use Pledge and paper towels. I love Pledge for wood furniture!
If you are buying something that is made of some derivation of plastic, wash with dishwashing soap and dry it thoroughly. I would even use Windex or 409 to clean it.
If it’s furniture that has glass, get your ammonia out (i.e., Windex) and get it to reflect as if it is a mirror. Windex is a must in my home. I use Windex on almost everything to clean out grime.
If it’s a couch (I don’t recommend getting a used bed… But if you are comfortable with that, you can always get a mattress protector to keep any germs from touching your fresh linens) I would make sure all of the dust and pollen is out by hitting it hard. Also, use a damp small towel and antibacterial soap to wash it thoroughly on the surface and wash any items that you can unzip. Once that’s done, let it dry in the sunshine for a day or two and make sure it is well protected at night from mildew or if it rains so it doesn’t get damp.
To get any smells out of the furniture, you can use fabric softeners and rub them throughout the piece of furniture. If you cleaned it thoroughly as described in step 1, it should smell nice and clean, unless it’s a couch or a bed.
For chipped areas in wood furniture, you can go to your local hardware store and buy sandpaper to smooth it out and then paint it with your most favorite dark paint color. Since colors like black don’t show little details like uneven areas, you don’t have to worry about the chipped corner. I’ve also heard of wood glue but I haven’t tried it myself yet.
For old paint, make it a fun project with your friends, significant other, or children and get painting! You can paint it in any way you want to add your touch to it. If you want it to have a vintage feel to it then use the sand paper after the paint is dried out which will make it look worn out. Also, if it’s metal, you can use a permanent marker and color some areas lightly, then dab acetone here and there, and voila, you have a vintage metal piece of furniture.

Lastly, if you just want to get your furniture now and don’t have time for retouching then visit your local home decorating stores and pick up whatever piece of furniture fits you the best. The key is keeping it simple and in harmony with your home.

Decorating Your Guest’s Bedroom Using White Bedroom Furniture

The perfect way to brighten a guest bedroom, white bedroom furniture, comes in a great number of furniture layouts. Depending on the guests’ ages, bedrooms featuring white furniture can function as both adult and children’s sleeping areas. Many people may choose to furnish a guests bedroom suitable for both adults and children, while others may tailor the bedroom’s theme to some specific guest occupant. This second option is fantastic for hosting parents, in-laws or if sharing custody of the child, getting the guest bedroom designed for a girl or boy.

Actually, probably the most popular colors for girl’s bedroom furniture is really a basic white bed accented by colorful flowers. Younger girls might even be interested in white bedroom furniture with decorated little princess designs or bed headboards shaped in princess-themed crowns and/or castles. Boys will enjoy white furniture accented having a sports’ theme. White headboards, featuring a variety of painted baseball, basketball and soccer balls, are often coupled with a table dresser featuring sport-themed drawer pulls.

If while using guest bedroom to have an adult child or parent’s guest bedroom, well-liked bedroom furniture collections incorporate using wicker, rattan and/or surefire. With respect to the bedroom’s theme, white bedroom furniture for a Cape Cod or seaside-themed bedroom may consist of wicker or rattan choices, while a Victorian-themed bedroom may demand using white, cast iron beds and solid wood night stands.

While some individuals may shy away from buying all-white furniture models, you will find simple ways people can dress-up plain, white furniture items. One of the least difficult items to focus on is a bed. Because there are a variety of comforter and duvet sets obtainable, selecting a colorful one with white accents, provides the bed a focus while helping tie-in the white headboard to the white-accented comforter.

Another easy furniture fix involves chests, dressers and other bedroom furniture items using handles or drawer pulls. In case your room is decorated, utilizing a particular decorating theme, try to look for hardware that coordinates with your chosen theme. Dresser pulls, chest hardware and other items can have outside hardware changed to subtly strengthen the room’s decorating theme. On top, scarves, runners and cloths can be put about the furniture to safeguard it, as well as aid tie-in the room’s design.

Before obtaining the white bedroom furniture, make sure the room is measured so you will know just how each item will fit, and to make sure you buy the proper size and measurements of furniture items. Guest bedrooms may be gentle and airy, because it is the area for your invited family and friends to relax. Once purchased, decorate to taste and await your guests to arrive.

Alfredo Camargo is an Internet Marketer, Writer and Consultant whose passions include helping people, red wine, coffee, travel, film and tea.

Metal and Wood Baby Furniture – Pros and Cons

Are you currently looking for baby furniture and want to know the pros and cons of woods and metals? With so many choices out there, doing some research can really help you narrow down what is the best fit for your home. While so many metal and wood baby furnishings are pretty, will they meet all the functions you have in mind for them? Hopefully this article can answer some of those questions for you and give you a clearer picture of what your needs and wants are for your dream baby nursery.

Pro’s of Wood:

* Style options! One of the obvious reason’s wood is a zealous choice is because of so many choices out there for styles and finishes! With crib brands like DaVinci, you can get anything from light natural finish to a dark espresso or black and in-between. Young America furniture from Stanley takes design a step further and has almost any color you can think of like pink, green, blue and purple. In the style section, every design out there is now available for wood baby furniture. Take any theme you have in mind, and you will find wood furnishings to coordinate. Retro, modern, French, classic, traditional and much more!

* Functionality! In today’s baby crib market, you can buy one baby bed and have it last your child’s entire lifetime. DaVinci and Storkcraft brands offer wooden convertible cribs that can transform to up to four different bed sizes. Most of the time there are additional parts you will need, but what a time and money saver to get a bed your baby can use as long as he wants? Not only is that beneficial to the family, but it makes a deep impact on the planet by helping with deforestation.

* More storage selections. Choosing wood will increase your storage options. Armoires, dressers and chests aren’t readily available in metals. DaVinci has a combo changer and dresser in almost any size that you can use as a changing station for the first few years, then you can just take off the changing pad and use this as a full time dresser his whole childhood.

Pro’s of Metal:

* Upscale elegance! No one can deny the fashion statement that an elegant metal crib makes in a nursery. The opulent iron scrolled cribs like Corsican and Little Miss Liberty offer incomparable sophistication. Notably, metal cribs are now offered in several themes and colors. You can get bunny, horses and tea time finials with the post iron cribs that really tie up a nursery theme.

* Durability. Of course a metal crib will be more durable than wood. If you’re looking for a solid and simple crib that can work with a lot of different themes, LA Baby has taken their industrial grade cribs that were once only available to professional places like hospitals and daycares and opened them up for parents. These cribs have stout hardware and concentrate on stamina versus themes.

Con’s of Wood:

* Not as strong as metal. Wood is definitely durable or the majority of furniture wouldn’t be wood, but when comparing it to metal…metal will definitely win out. You always run the risk of scratching paint and finishes more easily with wood. To ensure that wood furniture retains its new appearance you can get furniture markers that match the finish for when touch-ups are needed.

Con’s of Metal:

* Selection. If you have in your mind a very upscale and antique styled nursery, getting a lavish iron crib will really set the scene! But besides antique and classic, you’re going to be hard pressed finding other styles in metal furniture. You will also struggle finding other baby furniture in metal that will match your crib and nursery theme. If you go with the industrial design, you can get lots of colorful pieces you can use for storage, but you won’t find metal baby furniture in categories like armoires and full size dressers. You can pair wood furnishings with a metal crib if you get furniture with coordinated metal knobs.

* Price. These extravagant metal cribs can cost a pretty penny! Their intricate designs and solid frames are costly to make and they only last one stage. Many parents decide on the iron cribs for the heirloom factor and then subsequently buy big kid furnishings and pass the crib down through generations. Metal cribs are generally more of a sentimental investment rather than something you’ll be buying for function and overall versatility.

Final Thoughts

There’s no argument that both metal and wood have their positives and negatives! You have to determine what your wants and needs are and get what will fit best. Metal is a smart choice for pure luxury and heirloom quality or as a contemporary industrial sleep environment with amazing crib functions. Wood on the other hand can be found in designs that are diverse and useful at any stage of your child’s life. They do stand up to use, but will require some minor maintenance through the years. You can find wood baby furniture in any theme, price, style and color for you to create whatever nursery décor you have in mind.

Designing Better Futon Furniture

Furniture manufacturer often introduce new products and improve on them over time. The futon industry has followed this pattern as well over the years. The construction of a futon frame consists of several primary parts. They include a set of arms, rails, seat rack and back rack sections. Futon manufacturers vary the way they make these parts and the materials they use in the construction of these frames. Of course not all futon frames will be made the same and some manufacturers incorporate unique designs or features into their products that make them stand out. In this article we’ll examine several current popular manufacturers of futon frames that have brought design innovations into the industry, their stories as well as the construction techniques and features that they have developed over the years.

The August Lotz Story:

August Lotz started out in 1897. Located in Wisconsin they got their start making wooden bee keeping equipment. Soon after that they would expand out into making wooden furniture components for several different furniture manufacturers creating a niche for themselves in that industry. In the early 1990′s the company was purchased by Mark Barton and Mark Schlichter. They wanted to create fine solid hardwood furniture, futon furniture to be exact in a time when the futon industry was still quite young. Mark Barton was lead engineer and developed the existing designs used throughout the August Lotz futon frame line today.

His August Lotz futon frame design is unique when compared to other products throughout the market place. The seat and back section slats are designed with an interlocking English dovetail system that joints slat grid sections into the back rack and seat rack sections. While many manufacturers were using simple staples or nails for their slat support systems, Lotz was ahead of its time by incorporating high-end old world construction techniques into each August Lotz futon frame.

August Lotz frames are made from oak and many styles are available in a medium finish or an English oak finish. August Lotz was purchased several years ago by a Wisconsin manufacturer by the name of SourceCut Industries. That same commitment to design and quality of materials has remained the same. Their convertible sofas earned a Consumer’s Digest Best Buy Award for premium futon frames. An award given to fewer than 5% of manufacturers in a given industry. While it’s parent company SourceCut Industries offers domestic manufacturing, August Lotz products are imported with the same specifications and designs that have earned them the title of “best value in the market”.

The LifeStyle Solutions Story:

Founded in 1989 under the name Elite, LifeStyle Solutions entered the market with some very unique designs in futon furniture. They were among the first brands to incorporate Asian inspired materials and designs into several futon frame lines and have made an impact with their front operated and easy to open futons.

LifeStyle Solutions imports their futon line of products from Indonesia which are made to their specifications. It has always been important to LifeStyle Solutions that their products be made from sustainable forests and their pieces are crafted from ITTO certified (International Tropical Timber Organization) plantation grown hardwoods. LifeStyle Solutions has also earned the Sustainable Forest Management Certificate that shows their production materials are legally harvested from well-managed forests as defined by a comprehensive list of regulations.

CEO Sean Pathiratne leads this fast growing furniture company and has built a reputation for creating exceptional quality and value in every LifeStyle Solutions futon frame. Much of the LifeStyle Solutions futon furniture is transitional in design which will allow it to blend in well with both modern and traditional home décor.

The Night & Day Furniture Story:

Beginning in the late 1990′s, Night & Day Furniture was founded by Mike Gallawa. His simple goal was to create futon frames that could be converted easily from sofa to bed, making sure bolts can be lined up and ensuring that there is less hardware for the end user to have to deal with. Night & Day Furniture solved these issues with several patented features found throughout the Night & Day Furniture line.

Night & Day Furniture products are made from eco-friendly plantation grown rubberwood. Rubberwood is a member of the maple family of woods and offers a dense grain which helps in the kiln drying process. Rubberwood trees are latex producing and at the end of their cycle are cut down and replaced with new seedlings. Made in Malaysia. Night & Day futon frames are made to the highest standards of quality and construction.

Night & Day Furniture futons incorporate several different design features that are said to make assembly easier for the end user. The patented shoe fittings TM operating system incorporates several types of unique hardware applications. The Snapper TM provides snap on assembly and easy front conversion of your seat and back sections. ThumbNut TM is a barrel shaped nut that eliminates movement of the nut during assembly without the need for extra tools. Shoe Fittings TM systems are available Bronze or Gold depending on the features available.

In this article we’ve taken a look at several leading futon furniture manufacturers. August Lotz which was founded in the late 1800′s went from making wooden bee hive equipment to creating wooden frame decks using sliding English dovetail joinery. Mark Barton was lead engineer for Lotz and created most of the concepts and designs used throughout the line today. LifeStyle Solutions was founded originally under the name of Elite and is an import manufacturer who brought transitional designs into the futon industry. LifeStyle Solutions was among the first brands to incorporate Asian inspired designs and finishes throughout their line. Finally Night & Day Furniture founded by Mike Gallawa. Night & Day wanted to take a unique approach to futon design by simplifying the way futons go together. Developing patented hardware and assembly methods allowed them to make a futon frame easier to assemble.

I have always found it interesting how different manufacturers approach the design of furniture. Often many of the design aspects are similar or the same but sometimes manufacturers take a unique approach to design or come up with a radically new concept that makes that piece of furniture so much better than other products in the marketplace. This is the case with these manufacturers who have found ways to take an existing product line and make it even better.

Furniture Hardware

Replacing the old and worn hardware on your furniture can go a long way towards bringing new life to your older pieces and it can save on the expense of buying new furniture. Knobs and pulls come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be mixed and matched beautifully on one or more pieces in your home to create a common theme. Glass knobs and pulls add a touch of unexpected elegance while ornate brass hardware can accent precious antiques.

When replacing any type of hardware it is important to pay attention to the original knobs, pulls or hinges that were used. Heavier drawers tend to use larger knobs to compensate for additional weight and this should be considered when choosing a replacement. If you are planning to use the original holes for replacement pulls, measure the space between them (the “center to center” mounting distance) and choose a pull that will fit that size. Different pulls may have different center to center spacing so pay attention when reviewing the details for installation.

There are several different materials to choose from when selecting new or replacement hardware for the furniture in your home. Solid brass provides incredible strength and durability while pewter comes in a variety of unique patterns and designs. Cast iron is a wonderful choice for colonial or mission style furniture. Glass knobs are a unique way to introduce color into any piece and are available in a range of choices from bright ruby red to deep cobalt to pink.

LookInTheAttic & Company offers a wide selection of beautiful knobs and pulls for any piece of furniture in your home. Create a common theme by using the same or similar patterns and finishes on different pieces throughout your home. Remember that sometimes the smallest details can make the biggest impact on a design so select a knob or pull that reflects your decorating taste and unique style.