Restoration of a Davenport or writing desk

antique davenport desk

antique writing desk

Complete restoration of a Davenport or writing desk circa 1860’s.Restoration involved putting down lifting veneers, replacement of missing pieces of veneers.The colour of the the top of the desk had been badly bleached by the sun and was restained with Vandyke crystals (a natural water stain derived from the husk of walnuts) to regain and match the colour of the base.

An interesting feature of the desk was the brass lock which is stamped “Lamb Manchester” After the staining process the top was repolished with french polish or shellac polish.

With most of the desk the existing french polish surface could be cleaned and revived with additional coats of french polish applied before a final coat of hand made wax polish is applied .The ingredients of these homemade wax polishes consist of Carnauba wax ,paraffin wax ,and beeswax with a carrier of pure turpentine.It is the high proportion of hard waxes that produce a desirable and durable shine.The commercial wax polishes are easier to apply but do not contain a high proportion of the hard waxes.

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