Many readers wanted to know more about how I stripped the cabinet in my kitchen and how to care for it now that it is unsealed or salvaged wood with questions like:
-Do you leave the wood as it is?
-Did I put a clear polyurethane over it?
If you missed the post on how I stripped the cabinet, you can find it here, Furniture Stripping Basics.
To answer the questions, I did a little research. For now I am leaving the cabinet unsealed as it is a piece that does not get too much use.
How to Care For Salvaged or Unsealed Wood Furniture
-If it is a piece that will get a fair amount of use – like a tabletop; apply a coat or two of soft beeswax based paste wax to protect it. This will condition the wood, keeping it looking very natural with a matte finish while enhancing and protecting the wood grain.
-You can always add a sealant later, or experiment on finishes and sealants like a clear or tinted polyurethane on the underside of your piece to determine your favorite look.
-There is a risk of stains from spills or oils if the wood is left unfinished. Sanding with a combination of first 100 grit and then 220 grit sand paper will typically remove them and restore the look and feel.
– Even though the imperfections in the wood add to its allure, using coasters and placemats will help prevent unwanted stains and marks.
– The best method for cleaning is simply soap and water. You can also create a solution with a few tablespoons of white vinegar diluted in spray bottle of water. It works well to get off the finger prints and smudges.
I love how the cabinet came out and will consider stripping more furniture in my future. When my budget allows, I may even end up buying a piece of furniture made from salvaged wood.
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