Amy Ellis @ StowandTellU
Amy Ellis @ StowandTellU
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  • Bolingbrook, IL
Asked on Feb 28, 2013

Can anyone help me with #MyCurrentProject an old Sears&Roebuck Buffet?

Amy Ellis @ StowandTellURosemary NHamtil Construction LLC
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Answered

My current project is Sears & Roebuck buffet that belongs to my brother and sister-in-law. I could really use some help with this one!!! We have stripped and sanded, but are a little unsure of what to do from here. It appears to be maple, but will it take stain well, or should we just go with a clear coat? I'm considering an antique oil rub process, but am open to suggestions since staining/ refinishing is not my forte. Thanks for the help!
It has fairly clean lines, I think it's from the 40's.
It has fairly clean lines, I think it's from the 40's.
The S&R invoice is still attached to the back
The S&R invoice is still attached to the back
Here's the factory markings
Here's the factory markings
This is during the stripping process
This is during the stripping process
Very simple leg detail
Very simple leg detail
Could this be bird's-eye maple on top?
Could this be bird's-eye maple on top?
can anyone help me with mycurrentproject an old sears amp roebuck buffet, painted furniture
can anyone help me with mycurrentproject an old sears amp roebuck buffet, painted furniture
11 answers
  • Z
    on Feb 28, 2013

    I'm a novice, but I'll get you our resident expert in this field @KMS Woodworks. I've refinished quite a few pieces, but I don't use stripper.

  • Amy Ellis @ StowandTellU
    on Feb 28, 2013

    Yes, I would love to hear from KMS Woodworks, if they're available! Thank you, Becky!

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Feb 28, 2013

    Yes this does look like maple. A simple clear coat will not POP the grain nearly as much as a stained finish. I recently worked on a whole bunch of maple (birdseye) for a client. I milled some rough stock into a number of door jambs and door stops. With a bunch of smaller 2" wide trim as well. The finish I used was minwaxs "cherry" stain with a top coat of satin wiping poly. You will want to ensure that your sanding is complete and incremental with the proper grit sequence. Maple is a hard wood to work and will leave tracks if you skip a step. I normally begin with 120 grit in a 5" random orbit sander, Then some 150 to 180 grit. Final work is done with 220. After the Random orbit work work the grain by hand in the direction of the grain with some 220. Before staining wipe the surface down with a clean rag moistened with some mineral spirits. This will remove any sawdust and give you a "preview" of your sanding success. If you find areas that need touch up work now it the time to get them corrected. Allow the thinner to dry for an hour or so before staining. A light touch with the stain will pop the grain. be sure to wipe excess stain away and allow a good 24 hours before you apply the wiping poly. I normally do about 4 or 5 coats of the wiping poly. with a full day between coats. Before the last coat I do a rub out with some 320 grit.

  • Z
    on Feb 28, 2013

    Thank you Kevin. I knew you'd be able to help.

  • Amy Ellis @ StowandTellU
    on Feb 28, 2013

    Wow! Thank you Kevin @KMS Woodworks! This is definitely going to help a lot. I really appreciate the advice, and I think I can take it from here. And thank you, Becky for sending Kevin my way.

  • Gail Salminen
    on Feb 28, 2013

    @Amy Ellis what a beautiful piece, love it. I guess what you do depends on your likes. To change it a bit you could get bed post toppers to use as feet onder the current legs. For finishing the product it depends on your likes. I would definitely keep the top in the wood grain as suggested by KMS, but if you want some other colour you could milk paint the bottom level and do a little distressing if that is to your tastes.

  • Hamtil Construction LLC
    on Mar 1, 2013

    Very cool piece! The stripping/ prep you did looks really great. Certainly it will have a different look with stain vs. "antique oil" as you mentioned. I have finished maple with tung oil in the past I it turned out great. I have stained it as well with good success. You might try applying the finish you want to sample onto an inconspicuous area first to make sure you like the color, and sample the sheen of the poly if you go that route.

  • Amy Ellis @ StowandTellU
    on Mar 2, 2013

    Hi @Hamtil Construction LLC It is a great piece, isn't it? My sister-in-law inherited it from her grandfather. @ I would like to try sampling an area, I'll take a look and see if there's a good hiding spot. I was hesitant to use stain because I though it might not take the same in all areas because of the previous layers of paint, but several of you "wood working specialists" have suggested it now, so I feel more confident. Thank you for your help on this!!

  • Amy Ellis @ StowandTellU
    on Mar 2, 2013

    Hi @Gail Salminen, thank you for your awesome and creative suggestions!! What I wouldn't love to do with some milk paint on this piece. But I think you're right, leaving the top in woodgrain would be the way to go if I painted the rest. Thank you, these are going on the list of possibilities!

  • Rosemary N
    on Mar 11, 2013

    What a wonderful piece! You could antique it, you could milk paint it, you could do almost anything. Keep the top of the piece wood, so stain that part. , Then paint the base any color you choose. I'd put a couple of rows of wine glass holders in the portion where the door is missing. You could put anything in the rest. Or, you could hand a couple of square wicker baskets where the door is missing, put a vessel sink on top, and call it a vanity.

  • Amy Ellis @ StowandTellU
    on Mar 12, 2013

    Thank you @Rosemary N, for your awesome ideas!! I hadn't though of turning it into a bar. It is a great piece from way back when, they just don't make them like they used to.

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