In spite of the contemporary advances in completing technology (or perhaps because of it) the mystique of French Polisihing endures. Antique traders speak of French polishing as if it represents the pinnacle of completing mastery. Antiques traders are fond of saying that French Polishing is an uncommon and difficult art to master.
Nothing could be farther from the reality. With just a little practice, anyone can understand the method and it could be mastered with just a few hours’ practice. Additionally, once one understands the procedure and why it was developed, an individual will understand why French polskiemebelki dropped from favor. Now’s restorers will tell you that French Polishing is a very beautiful but very bad finish.
The Essentials of French Polishing
French Polishing is a procedure used to use a coating of liquid shellac (shellac mixed with alcohol) onto timber. Shellac is poured into the pad, absorbed by the wool, and thrown out since the mat is moved throughout the surface of the wood. The ability in the technique is to use the shellac evenly, leaving no mat marks. Depth of end is achieved by applying thin coats of shellac. To fill out the grain of the timber, pumice is sprinkled on the surface prior to each layer of shellac. It’s helpful to apply a little mineral spirits to the pad to keep it lubricated and keep the end smooth.
Brushes will leave brush marks in a clean, shiny shellac finish. Even now, modern spray and application systems will leave an uneven surface. Brushes and sprayers distort the liquid finish; following program, the surface must be leveled. Today, uneven finish surfaces are leveled and polished with fine sandpaper and abrasives.The result of this abrasive rubbing process is referred to as a hand-rubbed finish. From the seventeenth century, sandpaper was made with fish leaves and sand and was hardly fine enough or persistent enough to rub out and polish furniture finishes. Three hundred decades ago, French polishing was the only means to get a gorgeous finish on a piece of furniture.
French Polished surfaces are extremely beautiful but very fragile. Shellac is tender, so it scratches easily, and it is not resistant to cold, heat, or moisture. Most of the old wives tales about not putting drinking glasses on furniture were developed over countless years of handling shellac finishes. If you like the look of a shellac finish and insist on getting one, you will find far better ways than French Polishing to get the same result. The polishing process takes a long, longtime period to develop significant layers of finish. Allowing for dry time between coats, one could spend an entire day French Polishing the very top of the typical sized coffee table. Spraying or draining shellac to the same surface and then hand-rubbing and polishing can be accomplished in under two hours.