"Must Have" Products To Repair Mid Century Modern Furniture
Below is a list of products we feel are "must haves" when it comes to repairing and adding value to Mid Century Modern Furniture and Decor. Mid Century Modern pieces can be up to 70 years old and even the best of pieces can have some damage that can be easily fixed or cleaned up. The list below are products that we use to quickly fix certain issues with Mid Century Modern Furniture and Decor, allowing our pieces to sell for a higher amount. Each product below has a brief description of what it is, how we use it, and where to buy it for the cheapest price.
1. Howards Feed-N-Wax Wood Polish: Basically when we bring a wood piece home there is always 1 of 4 different things we will do to it in order of least amount of work. Number 1 on that list is clean it. Number 2 on that list is to treat it with Howard's Feed-N-Wax. Its a miracle product that makes aged, faded, scratched, dry'd out wood look brand new again. Its one of the easiest, quickest fixes to an older piece of Mid Century Modern Furniture that's been neglected for sometime. You can see just how good this product works by checking out this article we published where we restored a teak credenza using only Howard's Feed-N-Wax.
For readers in the U.S. the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2l8NSvO
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2lGp8yq
2. Howards Restor-A-Finish: Like Feed-N-Wax, Restor-A-Finish is another miracle product that can quickly breathe life into a damaged piece of furniture. Restor-A-Finish is a unique formula that has just the right amount of solvent for cleaning, and stain for penetrating through the existing finish to blend out scratches and blemishes as it restores the color and luster in one step.
The purpose of Restor-A-Finish is to restore an EXISTING finish, meaning you don't need to strip or sand off the old finish in order to repair scratches, burn marks, stains, ring marks, etc. It will not remove or even soften the existing finish!
The process for applying it is quite simple, take some 0000 steel wool and pour a small amount of Restor-A-Finish (first making sure you've chosen the right color Restor-A-Finish) over it. Using the steel wool, lightly work the Restor-A-Finish into the wood. The product emulsifies the finish on the wood, allowing the new stain to soak in with the existing stain, at the same time removing any scratches, ring marks, or burn marks. Allow it to dry for 5 minutes and then wipe away any excess. The finish and stain will dry and it will look like you refinished the wood, but with no sanding, staining or mess.
If completely sanding and refinishing a piece makes it look 100% better, this product will make it look around 75% better but will take you 5 minutes verses 5 hours. We recommend having at least one can of every common color on had (Neutral, Walnut, Cherry, and Golden Oak) so newly sourced pieces can be quickly restored and listed for sale. The links below will take you to Howards Amazon store and on that page you can select the colors you want to order it in.
For readers in the U.S. the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2lvBx61
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2lGcyPy
3. 0000 Steel Wool - You'll use 0000 steel wool to apply Feed-N-Wax, Restor-A-Finish, and more. Steel wool acts the same way sandpaper would but on a more micro scale, so as not to damage a finish or the wood underneath. You will only be able to use a piece of steel wool once when applying products like Restor-A-Finish and Feed-N-Wax, so we typically keep a few packs of these on hand.
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2m8nI0H
4. Strong Rubber Gloves - Most products that you use to restore Mid Century Modern furniture will be chemical based, so always make sure you are wearing rubber gloves. Because you will use a good amount of elbow grease when applying product, we recommend getting strong ones like these, as other thinner alternatives tend to break rather quickly.
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2l8L6qr
5. Scotts Shop Towels - Regular paper towels leave behind small white pieces of paper and will ruin your finish. The Blue Scotts rolls do not leave anything behind, and are industrial strength. We always keep a few packs stocked in our shop as they go rather quickly.
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2lLVxE6
6. Scotty Peelers - These guys are worth every dollar and you'll see us use them in every video and tutorial we post. Most of what you will buy will be either from a thrift store or a garage sale and will have a nasty adhesive price tag on it. These guys get the sticker off without ruining the finish on the item or your fingers.
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2l8Vui1
7. Edison Bulbs - This is one of our favorite methods of adding more value to the lamps we buy and sell. Most older lamps you will find will either have no lamp shade or it will be damaged. Thats where Edison bulbs come in. They're very popular right now, and because the filaments inside the bulb are so beautiful looking people are removing their shades so they can see the bulbs. When you find a Mid-Century or Danish Modern lamp and it has no lamp shade, instead of it looking incomplete, we recommend screwing in one of these guys, as it's a cheap fix. Edison bulbs from Home Depot or a Lighting store can be quite expensive. Amazon however sells them for pretty cheap. For just a few dollars for the a bulb you can add $50+ in value to your lamp. We usually buy and stock the multi packs so we always have a few on hand.
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2m8soUj
8. Metal Polish - One of the composites used quite frequently in Mid-Century & Danish Modern Furniture is chrome. It was used often for lamps, chair legs, etc. Because of the age of the pieces it is usually quite tarnished. If you buy a piece with tarnished metal use this metal polish and it'll look right as rain in no time.
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2l98Ivp
9. Trewax Furniture Wax - When you're all done either cleaning, restoring, or refinishing your piece you'll want to put this on after. This is the final touch and the difference between what makes some pieces look good and what makes some pieces look great. It takes plain looking wood, and gives it this rich, sexy, velvety finish to it.
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2lGm9Gc
10. Goof Off Wipes - Goof off in liquid form is good too but these are better. Instead of constantly having gunked up rags around to wash you can just throw them away when you're done. These are great for getting the adhesive from the price tag off of your item as well as any other grease and gunk that has built up on your item over the years. Definitely worth having under the sink, we use them every day.
For readers in Canada the cheapest place to buy it is here: http://amzn.to/2lM7Pwj
Refinishing is an amazingly satisfying and rewarding work but you need quite a bit more equipment and the proper space to do it and isn't an option available to everyone. View the above items as quick fixes to flip pieces that everyone can use and benefit from. You will make more money if you completely refinish a piece, but its also a substantial commitment of time as well and we'd recommend if you are new to just stick with the products and tricks above for now.