Victorian Parlor Table

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Project by Roz posted 03-28-2008 06:00 PM 1562 views 1 time favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I am not sure the title correctly names this project. I loved these very elaborate Victorian tables all over Illinois and Wisconsin. They were abundant in the antique shops I visited there. They all commanded a large price by Navy pay standards.

As luck would have it, one day in 2002 I was visiting a shop owner I had become friendly with and mentioned the tables. He had one in the back that he was going to try to restore. I went and had a look at it. Lying in the floor was a pile of walnut pieces and a marble top with no chips or cracks. It looked to be all there, so we settled on a price, $115.00, a lot for a pile of old parts. I took my treasure to the Wood Workers Shop.

I completely disassembled and cleaned the parts and began to repair and reassemble it. I discovered that there were a few parts missing and broken, and of course they were the fancy veneered and round fluted corner parts. To make things worse all but one of the rosettes on the bottom of the legs were missing. I had never tackled these woodworking task before. I charged ahead learning as I went. I managed to make all the repairs and missing parts.

I found a bit to cut new rosettes and ordered burl veneers to cut replacements from. The burl I purchased was not nearly as figured as the original but I patched and replaced it anyway. I am glad to say that I really have to look closely to see my repairs. I finished it in lacquer and it stands proudly in what my wife tells me is the “sitting room”.(code word for den) It survived a long wet winter ride from Chicago to Alabama in an open trailer and is still going strong.

-- Terry Roswell, L.A. (Lower Alabama) "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."

6 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3982 days

#1 posted 03-28-2008 06:05 PM

Great save! That’s a fantastic piece.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View CharlieM1958's profile


16274 posts in 4212 days

#2 posted 03-28-2008 06:09 PM

Man, that is beautiful, Terry. I’ll bet it would be even more impressive if you had a “before” photo.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Roz's profile


1699 posts in 3780 days

#3 posted 03-28-2008 06:11 PM

Yes I thought that too. I can’t find the before photos. Maybe I’ll run across them soon and can figure out how to add them.

-- Terry Roswell, L.A. (Lower Alabama) "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3816 days

#4 posted 03-28-2008 07:34 PM

Hi Terry,

This is a gorgeous restoration job. I really like doing things like this although I have never had to do anything as elaborate as you did with this. You took basically a pile of firewood and turned it into a beautiful piece of furniture for your WIFE’s parlor.

Does she let you go in there? My wife had one of these rooms until we remodeled it and turned it into a formal dining room last year. No one was allowed to even sit on the furniture in there. It was her room to display her collectibles (or dust collectors). After 19 years the furniture fabric was in pristine condition simply because it was never used. A waste!!!!!! (But I won’t tell her that).

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 3868 days

#5 posted 03-28-2008 08:00 PM

I like your table. “They” don’t build furniture like they used to. We had a re-upholstery guy over to give an estimate last week. He said when people ask him what the best brand of furniture to buy he tells them to get the style they like from a garage sale and have him redo it. Says it’ll be better than anything they can buy.

View Dan'um Style's profile

Dan'um Style

14172 posts in 3977 days

#6 posted 08-06-2008 05:42 AM

Nice work .. it came out very nice

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

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