(07) 3256 9000 | enquiries@bywaterdesign.com.au

furniture restoration

Mid Century Lounge Chair Restoration

Mid Century Decor can be very generally characterised by the use of clean lines, curves and smooth surfaces to create an understated look.

Bold colour fabrics against a neutral coloured wall was often synomous with mid century decor.

Form follows function.

So bearing all these facts in mind we mindfully restored these wonderful iconic chairs.

To keep their structural integrity , we took care in our restoration processes …

Mid century lounge chair just before their restoration

Mid century lounge chair just before their restoration

Careful dismantling prior to restoration

Careful dismantling prior to restoration

The Process for restoration involved careful dismantling of all pieces, removal of existing finish ( in this instance paint)

reglueing and repairing where needed.

New fabric was chosen by the client to compliment the wonderful richness of the grain which was quite eveident once the paint had been removed and the fabulous blue hues co ordinated wonderfully with their existing furniture

Just stunning

Just stunning

The end result is nothing short of spectacular.

These chairs classic shape and character of these chairs has not been changed, they have just been treated to some TLC to ensure a long and happy life .

For some more restoration magic have a peek at our Restoration Gallery for great inspiration of what you can achieve .

Cane Chair Restoration

With spring only a few weeks away (where is the year going ??) this little makeover is well timed to welcome in the new season.

A gorgeous classic cane lounge chair in dire need of some attention was transformed into a fresh , colourful new addition to this inner city Brisbane home.

A beauty in the making

A beauty in the making

Just waiting to be made over

Just waiting to be made over

A stunning result

A stunning result

Fresh , crisp and ready for spring

Fresh , crisp and ready for spring

We repaired where needed and repolished in white 2 Pack for a clean crisp backdrop to that wonderful effervescent new upholstered seat .

A little restoration project ...

We love our restoration projects.

There is so much satisfaction in repairing and restoring a piece of history, someone’s past, someone’s heirloom.

A forgotten household item now becomes the star of the living room.

It becomes a talking point.

It becomes a loved functional piece of furniture again and it goes without saying that in this mass produced era, its kind of cool to have something that is uniquely yours , that one of a kind feeling.

This little Oak Table is now a shining addition to its owners lounge room …

Oak Occasional table in need of some rejuevenation
In need of some TL C

In need of some TL C

A beautiful restored finish

A beautiful restored finish

An elegant addition to the home

An elegant addition to the home

A beautiful end result for this Oak Occasional Table .

We repaired where necessary, sanded and polished to bring out the richness of the grain


The timely process of restoration

Restoration or refurbishment is the process of repairing, fixing , modifying, repainting and repolishing an item of furniture.

It can often be a lengthy process, as repairs especially to antique pieces that are hundreds of years old require skill, patience and craftsmanship to ensure every detail is completed successfully whilst often keeping the delicate infrastructure intact, especially the case with veneers, paper thin and fragile, the successful repair of these can really make or break a treasured heirloom.

The argument for restoration is a strong one, sustainably wise and of great sentimental value, the journey of restoration is often an emotional one.

The adventure of restoration provides us with such a sense of satisfaction . Being involved in our clients’ family history and being able to restore a much loved item of furniture for them is one of the best things about our work. Being privvy to such an evocative journey reinforces our love of why we do the things we do.

There is so much history in each and every piece, a tapesty of lives interwoven and we are honoured to be able to enrich each and every piece of furniture, albeit it a tiny child’s chair, or grandmother’s dressing table, a great great grandfathers chair or a favourite aunty’s dining table .

Restoration is a gift for now and the future

A forgotten dressing table , some would say has seen better days …

A forgotten dressing table , some would say has seen better days …

An old dressing table is now a gorgeous new bathroom vanity

An old dressing table is now a gorgeous new bathroom vanity

Cultivating traditonal style

Silky Oak is a wonderful traditonal timber, popular in use for its rich mellow grain and durability for furniture making which is most likely why it was so prevalent for manufacturing in the early 1900’s and beyond.

When refurbishing this large bar area, Silky Oak was a natural choice the goal was to keep the traditional decor and enhancing the heritage features of the area.

With the inclusions of new pelmets, panelling, skirting and door panelling we enhanced the design asthetic providing detail and character to the existing area.

silky oak bar pre restoration
completed bar restoration with detailed panelling

Beautiful Restoration of a Chiffonier

We take so much joy in the process of restoration.

To turn something broken, old, and in dire need of some TLC into something beautiful and serviceable once again is a joy and a privilege for us.

Fresh out of the workshop last week was this gorgeous old chiffonier ; in need of a makeover.

chiffonier ready for restoration

We removed the old finish, repaired the veneers and the drawers and other areas that needed some adjustments.

We then sanded and polished and colour matched to blend in with the clients existing decor.

Beautiful once again , restored chiffonier.

Beautiful once again , restored chiffonier.

Restored to its former glory, the restoration process has given new life into this wonderful piece.

Ucyling teak to make a beautiful bedroom ensemble

Wanting to make use of an old Teak Malaysian Wall panel,our clients were keen for us to make a new bed out of this 300 year old beautiful panel.


A wonderful way to upcyle, and re use a piece of history, we made a new bed head and footer.

A wonderful result…

A wonderful result…

Character and ambience abounds in this wonderful bedroom

Character and ambience abounds in this wonderful bedroom

The teak bedroom ensemble blends in beautifully with the existing decor

The teak bedroom ensemble blends in beautifully with the existing decor

Restoring a Georgian Rocker

What a delight it was to be able to be a part of a wonderful birthday surprise between two sisters.

This quaint rocker belonged to two little girls and was used often to listen to bedtime stories

Fast forward 50 years or so and this little chair was in need of repairs and repolishing and what could be a better present than having it restored for a surprise birthday present ?

georgian rocker pre restoration.jpg

We repaired and restored this gorgeous piece including painting it white, and adding new rattan as well as a duck egg blue fabric to contrast with the freshness of the white .

restored white rattan rocker

A glorious result for this wonderful old rocker full of cherished memories and now it will go on for many more generations.

Just one of the reasons we love what we do !

Restoration of an old Locker

Restoration of an old Locker

There is so much satisfaction gleamed from restoring a wonderful piece of furniture to its former glory.

A traditonal Kitchen Restoration...

  The kitchen, arguably  the most hardworking, central point of the home deserves to be treated to some special attention now and again.

An update, extra storage, new modifications inject new life into a kitchen, evolving with the family needs

Using recycled hoop pine ( from a dismantled 1800's home in inner city Brisbane) this  kitchen was restored, to include an impressive butlers pantry, extra bench space and more storage and a new design in keeping with this traditional  Queenslanders   charm and character.






a a kitchen

Wooden Surfboard Restoration

Combining his love of both surfing and woodwork...Stuart was very excited when approached to restore an Australian classic  1950's wooden hollow surfboard... The board as shown below was in a fairly bad state of disrepair and needed  significant restoration and restructuring.


This fantastic retro board is an Okinuee .  The Okinuee, is the Australian version of the iconic Malibu Surfboard.  These surfboards were first made just after The Melbourne Olympics in 1956, when Aussie surfers, unable to source Balsawood used Hollowed Plywood instead and so the Okinuee was born.

 The only distinguishing future on this particular Okinuee is the name Babs ;inscribed on the front....   The name is most likely to have been a tribute to the maker or the surfer for his  girlfriend /wife... lucky Babs !!

The extensive restoration and repair process included; repair and reglue centre structure, repair to centre rails, modifications to the crossbeam, nose and tail sections to secure the main frame.  Plywood panels were then fixed with screws and glue, and a draining plug added.

An extensive sand, and repolish completed the overhaul of Babs.



Caring for your furniture in Winter...

With the onset of winter, the temperature drops and so does the humidity.  With these changes, timber furniture can dry out and possibly split in various places...


You can avoid this by using a suitable furniture wax to promote and keep moisture in the grain.  Simply wax on with a clean dry cloth  and  then wax off any excess, doing this a few times during winter will noticeably enhance your furniture and keep it in pristine condition.

If you are unsure of which wax to use, or you would like to purchase some of our furniture wax please call us on

PH:  3256 9000 or e;  enquiries@bywaterdesign.com.au  and we would love to help you .


Student Restoration Project...

Few people have a vision of what an old worn out wardrobe can look like if converted into a bookcase   We have completed several conversion projects  like these for clients and they have always been amazed at the finished piece .

So we were delighted when one of our Woodworking Students, chose to take up the challenge himself and convert his old Silky Oak Cabinet into something new and wonderful.

David was not deterred at all by the processes and time involved to complete such a makeover.

With the expert guidance from teacher Dave, David then went about on his restoration journey of stripping the old finish, removing the old mirror ...

In addition new shelves were made and fitted

Then the cabinet was sanded and David polished the cabinet to match his existing decor.

The finished product looks absolutely amazing.

Well done David on a remarkable job and for persisting to achieve what you set out to do.

You should be proud of your accomplishments.

We cant wait to see you next project !!


Restoring Churchie...

The Anglican Church Grammar School (Churchie ) situated in East Brisbane has a rich history steeped in tradition and education.  Established in 1912 in  Toowong Qld  and moved later in 1918 to East Brisbane,  the School has been undergoing transformation and restoration as part of its' centenary celebrations.

 Bywater Design are proud to be associated with the schools'  refurbishment. 

The most recent work undertaken were the restoration of the Entrance Doors to the Darnell Building...

Constant exposure to the harsh westerly afternoon sun, heat and UV extremes have left these doors in poor condition.


The existing doors were completely removed for a complete restoration at the Bywater Design Workshop.  Temporary plywood doors were installed for security and practical elements.

Cleaning 100 years of grime, dust  oil etc was a very ardeous but rewarding task.

The doors were finished in  2 pak marine epoxy exterior grade, highly suitable for harsh weather conditions.

Restoration now completed the temporary doors were removed and the new and much improved Darnell Doors were re installed and will maintain their excellent condition for many many years to come .


A little too much rain ...


Whilst the rain was lovely and well needed , the after effects of torrential downpours can and will play havoc with timber furniture.

You might have noticed in the last couple of days, drawers  and doors not opening properly/easily/ and they almost seem to have increased in size.

This is due to the increase in humidity in the air swelling the delicate timber fibres

 Timber acts like a sponge around water absorbing or releasing moisture at any opportunity.  Very few timber finishes will be 100 % water tight, and there will always be some form of water intake .

What to do about this ?? 

 One of the best things is to give it time to dry out; if possible turn on the air conditioning (not on extreme cold) and not directly in front of the furniture  ] this will encourage the drying process.  

Never ever expose the furniture to direct sunlight as this will just compound the problem ! (drying out  not only on the surface but aslo  being hit by the sun causing it to cup or bow and even split  ) 

With a little patience your furniture should return to normal, but if the problem does persist, please do not hesitate to call us on Ph;  07 3256 9000 and we can help you …


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Everything Old is New and Beautiful Again...

Kitchen Hutch awaiting Restoration  

This gorgeous 1940's Hutch, has seen many good times. In the 1970's it was lovingly given a coat or two of white gloss paint by its owner.   Fast forward to 2011 and this gorgeous vintage kitchen hutch was in desperate need of some major care.

We took it back to where it all began... stripping the gloss paint, inserting new mesh on the sides, installing new hardware and polishing it to a mid walnut colour to blend harmoniously with the clients' existing decor...


Professional restoration by bywater Design



>A Most Delicate Process...

> Fine Furniture Restoration is a most intricate and complex process, involving detailed and fine work resulting in many hours  bringing  centuries old pieces of furniture back to their resplendent original (if not better) condition.
Our Friends at  Unique France  requested such a transition take place for a stunning
Transition Style Commode.

This precious piece circa Paris 1880 was in need of extensive restoration.. 

The detailed and complicated  marquetry was in desperate need of repair and the Commode was literally showing all of its 130 years age

The high calibre of antiques at Unique France  demanded nothing less than the following processes for Bywater Design to underake...

*Repair and reglue Veneers that were lifting .
*Replace veneers that were missing including inlays
*Repair broken joints and reglue
*Clean original polish

*Apply polish to new veneers and colour match

The professional restoration surpassed all expectations and returned this Transition Style Commode to its
original glory,   The Brèche d'Alepwith (The Marble Sarcolin  obtained from the quarry in the Pyrenees)  uses its brown and yellow composition to highlight and complement the richness of the marquetry and the inlays.
This commode now takes pride of place in its new home but for more splendid antiques of the 18th century and beyond , we invite you to peruse the impressive collection at
 Unique France .

Naturally, for all your restoration requirements please Contact the Team at Bywater Design for a complementary assessment of your furniture.