I mentioned in a previous blog that while at an opening reception for a restored room at a local historic home, I started discussing my DIY work on the Tiny Bungalow with a wood restoration expert. Earlier this week, the gentleman I was writing about, Jeff Ediger of Oak Brothers, wrote me a description of what he would recommend for restoring my woodwork. It was eye opening. He treated this subject with such a particular and detailed point of view, I figured it was well worth taking his advice.
My intent is to end up with woodwork that is a close approximation of what might have been in the home originally. Without going through the painstaking effort of restoring the original shellac, I am going to do something a little different but hopefully just as beautiful.
Jeff's first recommendation was to get the wood as clean as possible. His directions were very specific: the brand of denatured alcohol, the brand of brass brushes and even the brand of paper towels. "They must be Bounty". I like how this guy thinks and it is not unlike my own way of dealing with my design detailing, my cooking, and my selection of beer. I completely understand that when someone with this level of knowledge presents "the only way" to do something, it is probably best to follow every detail.
I am going to spend the next day continuing this process. I am also going to take a step that Jeff did not suggest but that I figure may help. I am going to go over everything once more with some steel wool soaked in denatured alcohol. I think this will help as a final cleaning before I begin the staining. I will feature the next step (staining) in a subsequent blog.