Sunday, July 27, 2008

Restoring a Handmade Box

A friend and local antique dealer, Richard Latour of Millstone Antiques in Manchester, VT brought us this box to repair last week. It was missing some of the diagonal top edge inlays and some others pieces, including the heart shaped keyhole. He wanted it to be saleable, didn't want to have the gaping holes where the inlay was gone or spend a fortune on it. We agreed to do what we could for what he wanted to pay and once we got started it came out ok for everyone ... Check it out, it's a cool one ... Click the pictures to enlarge them ...
Getting started .. Gluing up a strip for the replacement parts
Patching in with the angled pieces we made form the strip for the edge inlays seen in the photo above
The 'finished' end repair
The front of the box ...
We even discovered what we think is some valid history. We had speculated that it might be English, late 19th century, but while we were working on it, the frame holding the mirror in the lid came loose and when we removed the mirror for safekeeping, we found this 1884 Schenectady Gazette under what apeared to be the original mirror ... Who knew?


Adam said...

Hello. I've been reading for aome time now, so I guess I better comment!!

I love that box. Great restoration project. My only question is why did you go with a varied pattern than the original corner inlay? Was that a cost saving measure? Just curious.

I really enjoy your writing and love your work. Please keep those articles coming!

Dorset Custom Furniture said...

we had a defined price so ir was totally a cost saving measure. we HAD to make the glued up strip to fill the missing pieces along the prominent top lid edge, and, that was easy and fast ... to duplicate the original corner inlay that was missing ... well, we'd still be working on it. whoever made this box had some time on their hands .... thanks for commenting ... dan