We finish our furniture in two ways using two different categories of finish. (See Finishing for overview.)

  • Chairs, table bases, and cabinet bodies are oiled.
  • Table and Cabinet Tops are varnished.

Maintaining our Hand-rubbed Oil Finish

(for chairs, footstools, barstools,table bases, and cabinet bodies)

For furniture used indoors (not porch rockers)

  • Wipe spills and dry the surface as soon as is convenient.
  • Move throws, place mats, and such from time to time to avoid "tan" lines.
  • Occasionally polish with a furniture care product of your choice.

Once every year or two on our chairs, we apply a light coat of lemon oil polish (Guardsman is a good one) and buff it dry.

For Furniture used outdoors (mahogany porch rockers)

  • Mahogany will weather from the light brown at delivery to a rich, red brown, on to a gray brown, and then to gray.
  • This change in color will depend on weather, exposure, and you.
  • The furniture will remain tight and functional for decades, whatever you choose. Nothing is required.
  • You will probably want to wipe down or lightly wash the chair from time to time.
  • At some point, you will probably decide the chair is looking dry and will want to re-oil it.
  • Get some oil made for decks, Penofin Penetrating Oil Finish Natural is good, and rub it on the chair with a cloth.
  • After coating the chair, wipe any excess from the surface with and old tee-shirt or the like. Oily rags can spontaneously combust, let them dry spread in the open air until crusty before disposal.
  • We have had a mahogany rocker on the porch of the showroom since 2004. We re-oiled it in 2014. Ten years seemed soon enough. This shop log post records its color changes due to time and attention: Maintaining the Rocker on the Porch

Maintaining Varnished Table and Cabinet Tops

  • Polyurethane varnish is essentially impervious to water and alcohol, but it is wise to wipe and dry the liquid spills.
  • Protect the surface from hot vessels.
  • From time to time, move place mats, centerpieces, and such to avoid "tan" lines.
  • Occasionally polish with a furniture care product of your choice.