Monday, January 18, 2016

An Antique Oak Server in White

Ooooooo I love this piece. A client emailed me a couple weeks ago because she'd been looking unsuccessfully for months to find the perfect server for her kitchen. We put our heads together and spotted this antique oak piece for sale on craiglist in Massachusetts. She decided on it and purchased it for me to refinish to the look she wanted.

         The oak server is probably from about 1900-1925. It had been badly refinished already. Usually I'm not one to critique other refinisher's work but this was bad BAD a real hack job. First the previous person had painted the top. The only reason I could imagine for this was that there was some damage to the top that the sticky black oil paint was hiding. I warned the client that without sanding it, there was no way to know what we were dealing with, and it was possible we'd have to put a new top on it. So I went ahead and sanded the top. It was tiger oak, miraculous spectacular flawwwwlesssss tiger oak. One of those moments when I want to drop my sander and dance a jig. I stained and sealed it. I also had to sand the entire case down. The red and black paint had been poorly and sloppily applied, and needed to be sanded smooth. I then painted the case in a fresh crisp white, and the interior is a custom mixed medium gray blue. I swapped the modern pulls out for a set of antique turned wood knobs I'd been saving for just such an occasion. They are likely exactly what the piece had originally. I'm wicked pleased with how this one turned out!

all that and somehow I managed to not take a 'before' photo!! Here's a blurry thumbnail from the original CL post. 


  1. beautiful job. I love simple. These old pieces look so pretty when redone.

  2. this is my buffet and i love it. i just wanted to say that working with Kate was simply great. and if i have any furniture "needs" in the future, i will definitely be thinking of kate. she was responsive with my initial inquiry and subsequent questions. she was flexible and readily available for drop off and pick up. very open and helpful with suggestions, but carefully listened to my needs and wants. clearly knowledgeable and skilled in how to fix and make forgettable piece beautiful again. in the end, i am supremely happy with my white buffet and its killer tiger oak top!

    as stated above, i looked for something like this for months with no luck. but once (with kate's help) i found a piece with the right dimensions and style lines, she made it into what i really wanted. and i never thought i could afford a "custom" piece, but what i learned is that if you find a deal on an ugly duckling to start, kate can make it beautiful for about as much as you'd pay for something at target, ikea, or the like. the difference is, you are getting REAL wood furniture that has some character. simply great! thanks, kate!