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I bought this hardwood rocker from the local junk dealer for $10 and faux finished it to give it an aged, well worn look, then put a price tag of $175 on it.

I didn't skimp on details on this project. It took hours of hand work to get this look. The varnished maple was sanded to give the faux finish something to adhere to. I used oil base and solvent base products to cover the piece. I often ask folks for old paint from their basements and get some interesting products. You can use oil based paint with acrylic as long as you give them their proper drying time and sand the coats for adhesion.

A coat of yellow was applied, sanded, then white, sanded, and finally a minwax polyshades honey pine stain mixed with clear was added. The three layers were painstakingly hand scraped and steel wooled, then two thin layers of polyurethane topcoat was added and rubbed out with steel wool for a satin finish and years of protection.

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Comments

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Hi Phil

I am sorry to say I did not like this project, it came in at no 32 of the 31 projects you have posted. I am sure that a lot of work, thought an effort went into it, but it is not to my taste. Maybe it is just the photographs, sometimes they do not do justice to a piece.

If I were to buy this, then I would want to restore it to its original glory. Sorry if my opinion offends you.
 

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Well I like it. I think its cool as hell. Especially if you get the money you want. Go gettem tiger. jockmike
 

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you just never know where you will find a treasure - and what it will look like when finished. I, too, thought that it was waiting to be refinished. After reading your description I had to look at it with a new perspective and I can see that in the right location this would be a wonderful addition and conversation piece. (i'm picturing it on the porch, surrounded with rustic furniture, birds singing in the trees nearby). Very artistic, Phil.
 

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I like a newer look to things myself but it is amazing that there is a way to finish a project to look old like this. How long ago did you do this and did it sell?

Diane
 

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I did it a couple of months ago Dianne and its sitting in a boutique here in town. The tourist season is picking up and things are starting to sell. These reproductions are very popular with the affluent river dwellers around here. I live along a major waterway and tourist area, a national treasure that celebrates its 175th anniversary this year. In fact one of my aged reproduction tables sold yesterday. I'll post it as a new project.
 

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Debbie, if you thought it was waiting to be refinished, then I have accomplished my goal of creating the impression that you speak of. I see very few crafstmen that can accomplish this work. Most put on a commercial store bought "crackle finish" in a can and pass the furniture off as antique. Mine fools some of the antique dealers. The reproduction and primitive genre is very popular and doesn't look like its going away soon.

I've had the opportunity to handle some of Canada's national heritage furniture collection, pieces that are displayed in embassies, the Governor General's residence and other government establishmensts. In the national woodwork shop, which was a rare treat to get a tour of when I was moving furniture in the building, I was able to see a level of furniture restoration and preservation of our past heritage that struck me very much. When all the true heritage pieces are bought up or gone it will take real craftsmen to reproduce these heritage pieces with the look and feel of a bygone era.
 

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I keep looking at it and tilting my head. I'm drawn to the piece, but I don't have any constructive comment at all…yet I type anyway.
 

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I like the idea Phil…I think it is a great piece of art in the woodworking world. Keep it going Phil.
 

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Well mot, if it were a real antique rocker, think of the history that happened in and around the chair. Go back a hundred years to bygone days, pioneers sweating out their existence on the land, rocking babies to sleep at night, parents and grandparents dispensing advice and discipline from such a chair, children playing on it, guests relaxing in it… Maybe it survived a fire and got moved in a horse drawn wagon or rickety old truck to a new location… Maybe it got passed down through generations and was kept in the family as an heirloom, and they refuse to restore it because it might lose its memories… I get lots out of it - that's why I put lots into it.
 

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Hi Phil…interesting project. I understand the idea, but I'm not sure I like it. The idea of faux finishing furniture to look old somehow just doesn't seem right. I know it's done a lot but i've never been attracted to it.

True antiques have a true story to tell…faux have…well a faux story. Of course a true antique rocker would likely be going for more than $175 so I guess there is that. I have a 150 year old Lincoln rocker that my Mother gave to me after she re-caned it. Of course I don't dare sit in it…(I'm 6'4" 280lbs)

The good thing is that I'm sure there are others out there that will love it. Good luck with it.
 

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Exactly Bob, true antiques have a story to tell, but not everybody can afford them so I try to recreate a story or a mystery, and I think that its important to do that rather than slather on an "antique" finish from a can.

In my career as a mover I've handled millions of pieces of furniture - a lot of stories - a lot of history. I was packing diningroom china one time and the client came over and told me that just one place setting was worth more than I made in a year. Must be why there are knockoffs of certain items. However, I do it to help folks have something similar to what they cant afford and a story that might have been.
 

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I too am not a fan of furniture made to look old and worn out, but I know that there are many who will give and arm and a leg for it. Thanks for filling that niche, so I don't have to. By the way, you really got the look you were working for.
 

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Hey Phil, any chance of maybe a blog on the process to get to the end-state of this chair? I would love to know because it really is hard to 'distress' something and not be too obvious. If that were to be a disclosure of some trademark technique, I get that too. Kudos on the effort involved.
 

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Jeff, I dont have any trademark secrets and would be happy to blog through the process.
 
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