Woodworker's Central
Woodworker's Gazette
Gazette Archive 12/11/99

A book review: By Joe Jansen

Title: Furniture Restoration Workshop

Kevin Jan Bonner

Publisher: Guild of Master Craftsman Publications

Published by: Sterling Publishing Co. Inc.
387 Park Avenue South
New York, NY 10016-8810
ISBN 1861080484
Price Softcover: $19.95 (Canada $29.95 )
135 color pages

This book, Furniture Restoration Workshop by Kevin Jan Bonner, was very organized, informative and challenging for any skill level. It is a particularly good read for those not experienced with furniture restoration.

The author starts with a simple bowl that needs some minor repair and French polish removed. He then systematically brings you through more and more complex projects building on the last skill he just wrote about. For the more advanced restorer, Kevin shows you how to hide a stain in the top of a table by actually making it look like it belongs there. That's one my kids would love to master for spill stains in our rug!

The book specifically covers the following: tools, materials, finishes, strippers and more. Kevin goes over applying different finishes such as French polish, danish oil, spirit lacquer. I particularly liked the section on how to apply an ebonized finish to hide old war wounds that could not be repaired sufficiently. Kevin also covered repairing veneer, removing stains, using filler and using body filler to fix some major cracks.

The book also breaks out tips and golden rules which are little nuggets of good information to make the job easier.

Overall, I think Kevin Jan Bonner did an excellent, creative job with this book. Refinishing can be a daunting, anxiety producing task and he has broken it down into more manageable procedures for even the novice to understand and maybe even to enjoy.

Joe Jensen

Editor's Note: Sterling Publishing has graciously donated several books for review which are passed on to our members free of charge in exchange for thoughtful, honest reviews. Thank You!

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