Furniture Restoration

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Learn how to restore furniture with our woodwork courses in Sydney.

Learn how to restore furniture for fun and profit in this woodwork class. Restore Nana’s old chair and learn techniques that may be applied to larger more problematic items. Discover how simple, enjoyable and rewarding restoring your old furniture can be. You will learn how to strip back, sand, mix stains and apply shellac. Gain practical knowledge of cleaning and waxing furniture, making minor repairs, and understanding the importance of health and safety in the workshop.


By the end of this furniture restoration course, you will:

  • Gain a comprehensive understanding of WHS in relation to restoring furniture
  • Correct use of finish remover (paint stripper) in preparing your piece for refinishing
  • Know how to sand correctly using different grades and qualities of sandpaper
  • Know how to apply shellac polish using a swoog
  • Know how to clean and wax your favourite piece of furniture
  • Give advice on how to carry out joint repairs at home (no repairs during class)

Ideal for

This course is designed for beginners and those with some experience who are keen to brush up and get some handy tips.

Please bring to class

  • Small piece of furniture, for example, a chair or small table. You must be able to take this home after each class as we cannot store the pieces on-site.
  • 1 x glass jar with lid
  • 1 x pair rubber gloves
  • 1 x bag of cotton rags
  • 1 x litre paint stripper (Recommended products: Bondall waterbased paint and varnish stripper or Norglass orange-peel gel paint stripper)
  • 1 x paint brush for stripper
  • 1 x empty tin (baked bean, cat food, or similar)
  • 1 x scotch blue masking tape
  • Sandpaper (grits 80, 120, 180, 240, 320 × 2 each of the grits)
  • Bag of coarse grade steel wool (grade 3)
  • Scissors (to cut cotton rags and steel wool)
  • Newspapers (needed every week)
  • 1 Ice cream container
  • 1L of methylated spirits
  • Please bring all materials listed above as we only provide the items below. Recommended stores are Mitre10, Bunnings or Timbecon

We provide

  • Scrappers
  • Safety glasses
  • Dust masks
  • Shellac
  • Wax
  • Color mixing dyes
  • Putty (within reason)

Depending on your piece you may need additional items as the course progresses. Briana will discuss this with you. Please note that paint stripper may only be used from metal containers.

Please prepare the piece of furniture

Please make sure your piece has no ornate details since it can be really difficult to sand intricate parts of the piece of furniture. If the piece you have chosen has paint on it, you will need to put additional time into the preparation – you may need to do some homework during the week. Between the end of the first day and the start of the second Saturday, your piece must be completely stripped, scrubbed, and all nail holes and structural repairs have to be completed. Otherwise it will be difficult for you to finish your piece. Briana is unable in this course to teach painted finishes, including liming and shabby chic.

Checklist when choosing your piece of furniture:

  • Small (easy to carry around and manipulate)
  • No ornate details
  • Simple (the less details your piece has the less difficult it becomes to sand)
  • Avoid spindles
  • Can it be de-assembled (if you can take it apart the easier it will be for you when it comes to sanding and applying the finish)
  • Avoid painted furniture
  • If you have any specific questions about your pieces of furniture before the class starts, you may contact the teacher directly:

Other information

  • Please wear closed-in shoes
  • Please don’t wear your best clothing
  • If you have long hair, please tie it back

This course has no current classes. Please join our waitlist and we will notify you when we have places available. Join Waitlist

This course has no current classes. Please join our waitlist and we will notify you when we have places available. Join Waitlist

Course testimonials:

  • said: Student gave this course 4.5 stars

  • said: Best course I have ever done! Alan (the tutor) is a maestro! Clear explanations and demonstrations. Courteous and generous with advice whether you’re a complete beginner or have some prior experience. Learn from a old school master!

  • said: Alan was knowledgeable, kind in his teaching style and always patient and helpful with our questions and the extra bits and pieces that we brought in. Course could possibly cover another type of finish but there's no time really to do that. Very good

  • said: Small group ensured personal attention for your project. Would have helped if the course was on the ground floor. Would like to do another course.

  • said: Alan is so very knowledgeable, and very generous with his knowledge. I can't believe how much I learnt in 2 days.It was wonderful to be working with a master of a craft. One of our classmates is himself a furniture restorer, and it was very revealing to see how much he respected what Alan knows . Also Alan is very approachable and patient - so all great skills for a teacher.

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