Long ago, women put bandanas on their heads, took their carpets out of doors, and beat the dust of the winter into the fresh spring air. That image is long gone–thank goodness! I love the scene in the film Brighton Beach Memoirs where the mother of the house is constantly polishing her mother’s dining room table. It was the 1930s and the chore is done with pride and love. But I’d bet anything she’d be just as happy enjoying a sunny afternoon on the porch enjoying the fresh ocean breezes!
Some of us, however, have the desire to make home a happier place in spring and summer embedded in our DNA. Fortunately, housekeeping in this age of vastly improved, sophisticated furniture finishes and environmentally friendly products is more a joy than a chore.
- What makes a more carefree furniture finish? At Hooker Furniture, the age-old dedication of making beautiful furniture is still employed–but with new methods to make finishes much easier to take care of, and innovative construction techniques that keep moisture and temperature changes from affecting furniture. Style and beauty is now married to know-how, and the result is a home that shines bright without hours of drudgery. That leaves us with time to enjoy the ambiance of home and the company of family and friends.
Hooker Furniture finishes receive two to three coats of lacquer for extra depth and long-lasting durability. In this process, the sheen (or, gloss) varies from a high gloss to low sheen, depending on the design of the collection. Of course, this doesn’t mean that some home care isn’t required. But with some prudent measures, your furniture will be beautiful for years and years.
This old-world chest design from the Melange Collection has a rich finish with a unique top veneer design.
An added bonus for consumers is the variety of such furniture finishes that are also in the lexicon of today’s furnishings: special veneer patterns, gold tipping, chevron veneer patterns, carvings, and silver leaf, among them.
- Hints for furniture care: Most of us buy a piece of furniture, put it in place, and let life revolve around it. You might want to take into consideration the following tips to ensure longer life. Some smart moves can make home a place to enjoy every day.
Avoid placement in direct sunlight. Or at least be sure to have a filtered window treatment that will keep the sun from causing fading. And try not to place furniture directly under windows where leaks can cause damage.
Keep furniture away from direct contact with heat and air-conditioning vents. Extreme temperature changes can cause warping and will affect longevity.
Plastic and rubber materials found on such items as lamp bases should be avoided as they might damage your finish. And of course, protect your finish from hot dishes, plants, beverages, etc., by using pads. Writing directly on a table with a ballpoint pen is also to be avoided.
To care for the dreaded spills: Blot, rather than wipe, avoiding dragging liquid across the finish. Spills that really cause harm: alcohol, perfume, and water left over a long period of time. Attack all spills immediately.
Pieces like this entertainment center from Hooker Furniture’s Grandover Collection are a masterpiece to be prized and preserved, constructed of walnut, maple and golden madrone burl in a dramatic and modern combination.
- Cleaning and polishing hints: Even with less work, there should still be reverence for an old-fashioned dust cloth–soft, dry, and lint free. Dust often, maybe while listening to a piece of music you love to hear. About twice a year, polish your furniture, again with a clean, soft, lint-free cloth, and always rub the polish in the direction of the grain.
Avoid silicone cleaners and waxes. You might get a nice shine, but because of how they affect the finish, it will be difficult to retouch or refinish your furniture at some future time. Wax will build up on the surface of your piece and cause other problems that can prematurely damage the finish.
Use polishes that contain detergents, emulsifiers, and mineral oil. Such products will clean dirt from the furniture and then give it body and future protection from dirt and moisture.
- Summary: Celebrate Spring with your own cleaning rituals–and then take a trip into the garden to see the signs of the season emerge, being thankful that your furniture will have a long and healthy life with just a few smart and commonsense moves on your part.
Any of the furniture peices featured in this article can be purchased at Sacksteder’s Interiors. Visit or call either one of our two locations for more details.