Restoration / Conservation

Stephen McDonnell offers a qualified traditional service in all aspects of Antique Furniture Restoration.

Traditional Wood Finishes

  • Wax finishes for early antique pieces which would include Oak, Pine and native timbers
  • French Polishing
  • Water Base finishes for painted furniture and decorative effects.
  • Oil Base finishes - usually when a tough durable finish is required, ie. kitchen table tops, etc.

Cabinet / Woodwork Repairs

Structural Repairs - I use traditional animal glues when repairing loose joints, loose veneers, mouldings, etc. For structural damage, ie. breaks and cracks, I use more contemporary glues (if needed) for it's superior strength. I carry a large stock of Antique Timber so that repairs can be carried out with a matching timber of a similar age. I also replace leather desk tops, furniture fittings, handles, knobs, spindles, etc.


This approach can be used when restoration is not required and rotten or damaged wood can be treated to preserve the piece from further decay and to stabilize existing timber.

Antique Furniture Restoration

  • French Polishing
  • Oil Finishing
  • Wax Finishing
  • Reviving of Dull Patination
  • Stripping and Re-Polishing

Cabinet Repairs

  • Repairing Structural Damage
  • Replacing Veneers Banding
  • Using Antique Timber of a similar age to affect repairs


Conservation also plays a major part in the approach to restoration and can often be used to stabilize and conserve old and important pieces.