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


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 .

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

The benefits of blue

It doesnt take much to rejuevenate a room, adding new upholstery injecting some colour , will bring new life into a space, giving it new life and new energy.

By recolouring these quaint chairs, a whole new world of decorating opportunities open up.

We used Dulux Northen Sky in 2 pack for these family heirloom chairs.

the use of 2 pack is a personal choice, but we used it in this intstance to provide sheen and longevity .

A fabulous fun result for these chairs !

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 !

Woodworking Student restores a wonderful Silky Oak Chest of Drawers

Woodworking Student restores a wonderful Silky Oak Chest of Drawers

We have been running our popular woodworking classes for well over 10 years now and they are a great source of joy and satisfaction for not only our students for us as well.

Mogens Lassen Scandinavian 3 legged Stool Restoration

Mogens Lassen Scandinavian 3 legged Stool Restoration

We are currently in the midst of restoring some wonderful mid century Scandinavian furniture.

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.

2015 Wooden Surfboard Day -- Gold Coast Australia

2015 Wooden Surfboard Day -- Gold Coast Australia

The 2015 Wooden Surfboard Day at the Gold Coast was held on what was most likely the most perfect winters day.  

A stunning Makeover -English Oak Sideboard Restoration

There is so much satisfaction gleamed from restoring a wonderful piece of furniture to its former glory. This quaint English Oak Sideboard was in dire need of some attention.

English Oak sideboard ready for restoration


Sideboard made from English Oak ready to be restored


Using traditional techniques, this exquisite piece of history will now take pride of place in the family home and will be enjoyed for many years to come

Fully restored english oak sideboard

Working with Wood Show - Brisbane 2015 -

It was all very hands on at the recent Working with Wood Show at the RNA last weekend...  



Bywater Design Wooden Surfboards








We had an overwhelming response and interest in not only our Wooden Surfboard and traditional woodworking classes, but also our custom making and furniture restoration services. Thank you to Carbatec for making this possible. Much appreciation to Michael Hoffman and David Wardrop for their invaluable help and enthusiasm over the weekend.


Bywater Design Traditional Woodworking classes






Bywater Design Hollow Wooden Surfboard Classes

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

Brisbane City Hall Restoration

Bywater Design are extremely proud to be the official heritage  furniture restorer for the Brisbane City Hall Restoration Project.  During the past months, we have been very busy restoring the wonderful furniture in City Hall.  Many of these pieces date back hundreds of years and carry with them so much history and character.

gilded mirror city hallA wonderful slice of history involved in  the  restoration project, was the repair and re-gilding of this wonderful gold mirror.

Dating back to the 1800's, the 24 carat gold mirror originally from Europe was bequeathed to City Hall and now after a detailed repair and restoration this commanding and majestic piece, which incidentally stands over 2 meters high, now takes pride and place in the newly refurbished Media Room in Brisbane City Hall.


Also included in the many facets of this project was The Restoration of The Coronation Chair for Queen Elizabeths II's visit to Australia in 1953.


er chair restoration

We look forward to sharing more photos and stories on the Brisbane City Hall Restoration Project, including the wonderful refurbishment of the original Shingle Inn Booths.

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 !!