Another Oldie AND Goodie!

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Review by MsDebbieP posted 12-15-2011 12:03 PM 2636 views 1 time favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Another Oldie AND Goodie! No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

This review is from the December 2011 issue of our LJ eMag

Thanks to Toolemera we have another historic book of woodworking wisdom to offer for a free book draw (see details below).

Edited by Henry Carey Baird
1850: Published by Henry Carey Baird, Philadelphia.

As stated in the preface of the book, “The object of the “Painter, Gilder, And Varnisher’s Companion” is to give a clear, concise, and comprehensive view of the principal operations connected with the practice of those trades; and to embody, in as little compass and as simple language as possible, the present state of knowledge in the arts of Painting, Gilding, and Varnishing, including all the information derived from the numerous recent discoveries in Chemistry.”

The little book, all 190 pages, is filled with information and I am fascinated by the tools, techniques, and definitions that are found within. If you have have a need for lead paint – the information is there. Or what about grinding your own indigo? Yes, there are machines to help you with that. Or perhaps you would like to use a colour that is “almost too brilliant for the eye to endure”. Doesn’t that just pique your interest? You’d be looking for Madame Cenette’s Vermillion, in case you are curious.

Perhaps you are more interested in the varnishes. Well, “for a varnish to really good, it ought to be limpid, brilliant, transparent, and durable.” If you want to make some turpentine varnish, all you need is some rosin and oil of turpentine.. and a stove. And for a good polish for dark wood, all you need is some seed-lac, a couple drahms of dragon’s blood, a few other ingredients and you are on your way. I have no idea what “dragon’s blood” is but it sure does sound intriguing.

I’ve heard about “French Polish” – many LumberJocks’ have shared their techniques. But, did you know that the thick woollen cloth that is to be used should be torn and not cut, creating a soft, elastic edge?

There is so much more – so much!! It is fascinating. And then I think of how easy we have it when we can run to the store and pick up a container of – whatever it is that we need – or even order it online and have it delivered to our door, already prepared and ready to go! But none of this would have been possible without our ancestors and those first woodworkers and chemists!

Two thumbs up for this book.


One random draw winner will receive a copy of the book.
To enter your name in the draw, click here and answer the two easy questions.
Deadline: January 10, 2012

Another big thank-you to Toolemera for the donation of this book for a free draw here at

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View MsDebbieP's profile


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