Picking the perfect piece…
How do you pick the perfect piece of furniture? First off, you pick a piece with the look and style that you love. Me, I love the older, vintage pieces. You can always find hidden treasures at flea markets, thrift stores, goodwill, salvation army, curb shopping (that’s the grown-up word for trash-picking), yard sales, estate sales, or numerous other places that carry used furniture.
Sometimes you get lucky right away, and sometimes you don’t. Once you find a piece you love, you do a happy dance! Just kidding.
Is it really perfect?
You want to inspect the piece for defects. Look for things like deep grooves or scratches, or veneers pulling away. I pull out the doors and drawers to see if they move freely. I also smell them because if there’s an odor of mothballs, cigarette smoke, or perfume, you gotta be able to remove that. Also, if there is contact paper, oils, nail polish, or other foreign matter, you need to know how to remove them as well. That’s the reason I do inspect them so closely.
I also look to see if all hardware is there. If not, you will need to replace it, and that can get pretty costly. Especially if it’s a hard to find older piece or the size is rare.
I also look for dovetail joints, which are how the joints of drawers or backing and sides are put together. I know these will hold up for a long time to come. Me personally I don’t want to put time, creativity, and energy into something that just is not worth it. You also have to check to see if the dovetails line up and are not loose. If so, you’ll need to repair. You want your drawers to slide nicely. Again, and if they don’t, you need to repair. That’s all extra time and effort.
My close to perfect
So I try and pick pieces that are not perfect, but darn near perfect. It’s just my way of doing things. I’ve learned this process over the last five years.
When I first started I used to pick up pieces that were in total disarray and needed a lot of repair, but if you can’t handle the repairs on the dresser it’s not going to work for you.
Is it really worth your time and energy?
I picked up a piece that was totally destroyed. Took us almost six months to rebuild. Little by little, but I felt it was worth saving because it was from the eighteen hundreds, and when we finally did get it rebuilt, I was very, very happy with the results .
But it’s your call . If you’re just getting into this, the best thing to do is definitely check all your pieces for all the points I just went over.
Because if you don’t know how to repair a piece then you’re gonna have to learn. But if I really love the piece, then I roll with it, because I like rescuing furniture.
Another thing you gotta look for is stability. What do I mean by stability, is it racked? Meaning, does it sit evenly? Or does it wobble? If so, you will have to figure out why and then you will have to repair it.
Plus, you’ve got to remember you still have prep. I choose pieces I love and that I know are repairable and I can fix easily. Because I have been there before.
I also look for maker’s marks such as, Drexel, Dixie, and Thomasville. These marks are usually inside a drawer. There’s a lot of makers out there I have my favorites.
So it’s not just go pick out any piece. You want a quality piece. Hopefully I have helped you. You can always look look me up on Facebook, Instagram, or email me if you have any further questions. Thank you for reading and please leave comments or questions below. I would love your input.