Old Sewing Machine Table

mirrenFebruary 28, 2007

For about a year I have been looking on a balcony in my apt building and seeing a small wooden sewing machine table which was being used to hold a small barbecue. Today the tenants moved out and put the table in the garbage room. I grabbed it right away. It is in good shape but because it has been out in the weather the wood is really dry and the metal parts are rusted. I would like to use it for one of my machines. Could you tell me what type of oil ot what could I apply to bring the wood back. I am not really concerned about the look but it feels so dry and ugly. But I have been courting this little tble for about a year. LOL

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I don't have a great suggestion-- maybe Murphy's Oil Soap, that's been useful on some of my pre-owned finds... I just wanted to support your glee on your table. Your story of waiting it out for a year made me smile. I've stalked neighbor's roadside furniture myself, waiting for them to go inside so I can take it home. :-) (Vintage chairs, etc.)

I'm glad to hear about someone rescuing an old sewing table. I've done so with a number of them myself, (I use them for bedside cabinets and side tables, without the sewing machine.) You might consider giving it a lick of paint if you're not able to put the oils back in. I did that with one of mine, which turned out pretty well. I'll post the link to that at the bottom of this message, just for reference if needed.

But most of all, congrats on a such a happy resolution to a year long's worth of patient waiting! Yay!


Here is a link that might be useful: My junk shop sewing table, with face lift :-)

    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 8:22AM
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I love old english polish and scratch remover. It comes in a light wood or dark wood finish. Its a combo oil and stain and will do wonders with dried out wood. If you use it, at first it will look oily and wet, give it overnight and you'll be amazed! Found mine at grocery store or at **al-*art

You can also lightly sand, wipe, put some stain on. Once dry, put a coat of paste wax, let dry and buff. Great smooth, deep finish. Has to be occassionally touched up(maybe twice and year) but looks and wears great.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 8:53AM
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SisterSunnie, I think by your helpful post for Mirren, you inadvertently solved what I need to do some of my woodwork, which has been scratched up by the previous owner's dogs! I'd used a woodmarker in spots, but it was taking forever.


    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 10:30AM
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Thank you so much for the replies. Later on last night I went back to the garbage room and they had also left a two piece china cabinet sort of thing. The bottom has two doors that open outward and the top has two glass doors that open outward (as opposed to sliding). It is made from that pressed stuff (not solid wood) but it is very heavy and sturdy and in good shape. It is painted white (factory). There are no shelves in it but there are holes to put the little things in to hold shelves. I plan to use it in my sewing room to hold fabric, yarn, etc. I love it when people move. If anything is usable and I dont want it, I take it anyway and take it to a local thrift shop which sells and also gives to people in need. So far I have taken bags of shoes, clothes and I have a new pair of girls figure skates to take there. We are expecting a storm tomorrow so I will go for groceries now and get the stuff for the sewing table. Thanks again for replying.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 12:05PM
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Mine had a lot of dust on it and I just used a rag and soapy water and cleaned it off and then rinsed...keeping water to a minimum. It added moisture back into the wood. Then when dry, I used the normal tung oil on it. But there are varnishes that are tung oil. It really brought out the grain of the cabinet. Ever so often I re-tung it, lol.

Wow shoes will be good next Christmas for decorations (if they do not fit). and the cabinet sounds good for material.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2007 at 5:18PM
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Check out this website -


Old sewing machine now becomes a $250 sofa table.


    Bookmark   March 3, 2007 at 8:21PM
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Sal, that was a really fun site, thanks for sharing it. Luvs

    Bookmark   March 4, 2007 at 11:27AM
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I just bought an old treadle machine last weekend. MIL brought up a rag with lemon oil on it and said it's best for old wood and safe for it. I know I have used orange oil on newer items we have here and it puts LOTS of moisture back in the wood. MIL said that it hasn't been around long enough for her to trust it, though! :)

    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 11:05AM
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I was going to say mineral oil so i googled it and yep, that's what they use in food service. Check out your baby oil, that's probably mineral oil.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2007 at 4:20PM
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I love Liquid Gold

    Bookmark   November 5, 2011 at 9:21PM
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There is a Zap! Wood Restore product, that really works on old dry wood. I use it on my porch swing and porch rockers a couple times a year, and they get really dry. Tung oil is also a good suggestion, I use that on my old round oak dining table once about every couple of years. It repels water well.

I got the Zap wood Restore at Home Depot, but I think you can get it at most any hardware/ home improvement store.


    Bookmark   November 7, 2011 at 9:11PM
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