I’ve got a fun reclaimed wood project for you today that we recently made for a local winery. They wanted a rustic, natural wood feel for their tasting room that was soon to open near downtown Orlando. You can check out the winery at www.quantumleapwinery.com
So, here’s what we did . . .
We went shopping at Florida Victorian Architectural Salvage in Deland, FL where I picked up almost 300 LF of antique pecky cypress 2 x 6 boards. These boards were salvaged locally from a 1910s Folk Victorian when it was sadly torn down. But I had it in mind to turn this reclaimed wood into something useful again. The cypress was perfect for the oversized 4′ x 8′ tables they wanted because it was much lighter than any other options, but still hard as a rock due to its age.
Back to the Shop
We got the salvage boards back to the shop and began to assemble them into the tables. We cut off any rotted or termite damaged sections and then doweled, glued, and clamped the boards together to form the table tops.
After letting the glue dry overnight, we came back and sanded down the tables to level out the boards. We made sure not to sand too much because we wanted the boards to keep their character and patina as much as possible. If you’re using reclaimed wood, I always think it’s best if it looks at least a little bit like it has been reclaimed. That’s half the fun, right?
After everything was level, we wiped the tables down with water to open up the grain. Next, we gave them a nice coat of Minwax mahogany stain (they really started to look great!). Some of the boards took the stain so deeply they were almost black in places. We then used 3 coats of my specially mixed wood finish and then topped it all off with a couple coats of paste wax.
All told the tables came out beautifully and the clients were very happy. They had such a rich color and worn patina that evoked an awesome rustic and salvage character. We left all the chips and dings and even added a few of our own just for good measure.
And the Best Part?
The underneath! We left the wood underneath just like we found it, raw and unfinished so you could see the history of the boards. The owners love to tell their customers the back story of where the tables came. They’ve even told me that customers like to look and feel the undersides of the tables to feel the history for themselves.
That’s why I love custom creating projects from salvaged materials and reclaimed wood. Not only does the piece have a story of how we made it, but it has its own story from decades before it ever came to our shop. And that’s the story that’s really worth sharing!
What’s kind of salvage projects do you want to make?
Founder & Senior Editor
I love old houses, working with my hands, and teaching others the excitment of doing it yourself! Everything is teachable if you only give it the chance.