Our Cleaning Process:
We thoroughly clean every piece that comes into our showroom. Here are the specifics:
Vacuum & Steam: This is the very first step when a new piece comes into our workshop. Tables, trunks, crates and other items are thoroughly vacuumed and cleaned with a high-heat dry vapor steamer. All case good drawers are removed and cleaned as well as their inner carcasses. We realize that when buying antique and vintage furniture, especially upholstered pieces, bed bugs are a major concern for many customers. The dry vapor steaming process that we use on all of our pieces would assure that all bugs and eggs are killed on contact. In general, we carry very few upholstered pieces and are extremely careful about the source of these items. Rest assured, we have never had a problem with bugs in our showroom or in customersâ€™ homes.
Vinegar & Water: This cleaning solution is used in combination with steel wool and towels to provide a deep and natural clean to the outer surfaces of unpainted pieces.
Minor Repairs: Repairs are undertaken to fix problematic drawers and legs on particular pieces. We repair items to the extent that we can given our restrictions in space and materials.
Oil & Wax: Using products such as orange oil and furniture conditioner brings out the shine and natural luster of old wood surfaces. This is typically our final step before pieces are photographed and placed in the showroom.
Care, Cleaning & Maintenance of Vintage Furniture:
Due to seasonal changes in humidity, temperature and sunlight, vintage furniture pieces should be cared for to reduce the amount of wear they receive over time. All furniture, especially pieces made of wood, should be kept away from close contact with radiators, heaters, humidifiers and cooling systems to reduce the risk of expansion and contraction. Furniture should also be kept out of direct sunlight if possible, avoiding rays from large open windows that can cause discoloration. Try to avoid placing wet or hot objects on all finished and unfinished surfaces. You should dust your pieces routinely and apply furniture oil or wax every 6 months or so to condition unpainted wood pieces.
General Furniture Care & Maintenance:
Avoid placing pieces in spaces with significant changes in temperature or humidity levels.
Place pieces away from working radiators, heating or air conditioning vents, ovens, fireplaces or windows with a large amount of direct sunlight.
For general cleaning, use a lightly damp cloth. To tackle deep cleaning projects on unpainted pieces, we suggest using a water and vinegar solution. On finished pieces, test this solution in an inconspicuous area on your piece to make sure you will be happy with the result.
Dust regularly using a lint free cloth.
Caring For Wood Pieces:
Throughout the long winter months, wood furniture tends to dry out from a lack of moisture in the air. To keep pieces moisturized and reduce the visibility of minor dry scratches, we recommend using Howardâ€™s Restore-A-Finish wood oils. Make sure to apply a liberal and even amount of oil to the entire surface and then wipe any excess oil away with a cleancloth to help avoid the build-up of dirt and dust.
With variations in temperature and humidity throughout the year, you may find that some case goods such as dressers may have sticky drawers or doors due to the expansion and contraction of the wood. A simple fix for this problem is to rub a liberal layer of wax or soap onto the runners and the inside of the carcass where the drawers make contact. We recommend using white candles or simple white bar soap for this.
Our preferred method of maintaining a varnished finish is a coat of high quality paste wax. Furniture paste wax is stable and long lasting, providing protection from wear, moisture and dust. A thin coat of wax applied annually will help protect your furnitureâ€™s finish.
Caring For Painted Surfaces:
Due to the fragility of painted pieces, you must be very careful not to damage your piece. As with wood furniture, you must make sure to keep these items in a space with stable temperature and humidity levels.
Painted pieces are not waterproof, heat resistant or immune to chemicals. Avoid placing hot dishes, cooking supplies, extremely heavy items or sharp objects such as cutlery and pens on painted surfaces.
Do not use vinegar, lemon juice or other cleaners containing acids when cleaning painted surfaces.
Take extreme care when moving these pieces to avoid scratches, stains and chips.
Caring For Metal Pieces:
For general cleaning, use a mild soap and water or a vinegar and water mix with a cleancloth. For deep cleaning finishes similar to stainless steel, use a fine grade steel wool along with the water and vinegar mix to work out any rust spots or areas with a lot of dirt build up. Take care when using harsh chemical cleaning solutions such as brass cleanerso that you do not damage the finish of your piece.
For all cleaning methods, especially when using steel wool or harsh chemical products, test in an inconspicuous area on your piece to make sure you will be happy with the result.
For metal pieces such as wrought iron which have already begun to rust, use a wire brush to remove any rust flakes but be careful not to scratch or chip the surface if it is painted.
Caring For Upholstery:
If spills occur, it is important to clean the fabric immediately to avoid the stain becoming permanent. Ideally use a clean, dry, absorbent cotton cloth to blot up the spill. If you must use paper towels, make sure that they are white to avoid any color transferring onto the fabric. If the stain is still visible after blotting, professional cleaning is advised.
Never apply cleaning solutions to visible areas of your upholstery fabric without first testing on hidden areas for colorfastness and fabric compatibility.
Upholstery should be vacuumed regularly to remove dust and grit that may cause abrasion and premature wear. Professional cleaning is the best way to make a piece look new again, but weekly vacuuming will make professional cleaning a much less frequent event.
Avoid placing hot or sharp objects on or near leather and fabric upholstery, as they can be scratched, cut and marked very easily.
**ALL SALES ARE FINAL.**