For my 23rd birthday Henry gave me an antique Brandt leather-top side table. The table features a leather top surface, on a turned stem terminating in four splayed legs, with solid brass hardware and solid wood construction.

These photos were taken on the day that Henry surprised me with the table on his driveway: August 2011

At first the table lived in my bedroom where it was used as a way to display family photos. A few months later we moved the table to the living room as a side table for the sofa. During its time in the living room this table has displayed a collection of books, photos and a lamp.

Two weeks ago I noticed that the table had started to show its age, I could see scratches, blemishes, stains and how dirty the hardware was. I decided to do its yearly check up by taking the table apart, unscrewing the hardware, top and legs.

The first step was to clean and polish the solid brass hardware; round pulls, casters and toe-caps. For this process I used a product called Brasso because it’s extremely easy to use and great for cleaning and polishing brass. I have used Brasso before on other projects. Read HERE.

The hardware before Brasso

I went to the yard, sat on the grass and applied Brasso to the pulls. After allowing Brasso to soak up for about a minute all you need is to wipe it off with an old rag. I repeated the process as needed to fully remove the dirt and grime. For the round pulls I used an old toothbrush to get the dirt out of the small details.

The toe-caps after Brasso

With a bit of work I got the hardware to look like this

After about an hour of scrubbing the brass I moved on to the legs and top; I cleaned the table completely with a clean rag. Instead of adding just gloss I decided to stain the table because it had been exposed to direct sunlight and the fading was extremely noticeable. Stain will blend in all the imperfections and gloss will make it more noticeable. From a previous project I had stain left over which was a close match to the existing. The stain is MinWax Red Oak 215.

The damaged areas on the drawers and legs

To get an even finish I applied the new stain with an old rag, I left the table to dry outside. An hour later I came back and I was ready to reassemble the table. Once inside I was able to see the improvements that the new stain made.

I took a few minutes to attach the pulls, and toe caps. When done I was extremely happy with the finished results, by just taking a few hours to clean and stain the table I was able to make this old table new again.


This project only took a day to complete and the results make a world of a difference.
Have you taken on any projects lately? Let me know below.

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