If you are looking for distressed furniture styles, then obviously our antique French furniture is naturally distressed from at least once century of being loved and used! Sometimes though, our customers want new pieces that just look old… they want antique-inspired furniture that is newly crafted but with an aged and distressed look. We have plenty of options for new furniture and home decor on our website so we are happy to help out! Today I’m going to tell you how some of our furniture makers work their magic to achieve their distressed furniture finishes.
Some of the best antique-inspired furniture is crafted using the same techniques that were used for the original antiques. Jonathan Charles Fine Furniture is a good example – their reproductions include hand-cut marquetry and intricate carved details. Then their pieces are aged to look like an antique. This Jonathan Charles distressed bureau in the Queen Anne style gives you a taste of their skills!
Jonathan Sowter, founder of the company and a cabinet maker since he was 12 years old, says: “If you take a piece of furniture and finish it fantastically, people could imagine it’s an antique. It’s all in the finish.”
That requires special knowledge to get the distressed furniture look. Sowter says that his craftsmen understand where a piece of furniture would have bangs and knocks and scrapes after years of use, and where it wouldn’t.
“Even shading around the handle,” Sowter says, “because when you clean antiques for hundreds of years you don’t always clean in and around the handle!”
This close-up of a section of the oak bureau shows what he means. The bureau is a replica of Queen Anne desk designs dating to 1710, more than 300 years ago. The desk looks incredibly authentic, you could certainly believe that it’s been used for three centuries.
Another way that distressed furniture gets its aged look is through hand-planing. The furniture makers at Scarborough House are brilliant at this.
This heavily distressed Scarborough House chest cabinet is one of their many hand-planed pieces. Combining a rustic look with beautiful parquetry for visual and textural interest, the sturdy and heavily distressed cabinet is cleverly planed by hand to give that genuinely old look. It’s the kind of technique that takes years to perfect!
Another way that distressed furniture gets its antiqued look is through hand-rubbed finishes. This Ambella Home Bonita king bed has a hand-rubbed antique ebony finish that makes it look far more interesting than if the black finish looked too perfectly “new.”
Woodbridge Furniture Company makers are also masters at distressed furniture, with their hand-rubbed and waxed finishes.
This lovely little Woodbridge side table with a dovetail construction drawer is crafted in solid wood and finished with a hand-rubbed distressed cherry veneer. It is not only a very practical side table (I can imagine it as a bedside table too!) but it looks great because the gently aged appeal is very charming.
Whenever you buy distressed furniture, you don’t want the distressing to be too obvious otherwise everyone can spot that bad distressing a mile away and they know it’s a new piece. The best distressed furniture keeps everyone guessing!
Here are more examples of beautifully distressed furniture on our website. Prepare yourself to be seduced!
Aimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.