Many times family heirlooms are passed down from generation to generation, and after a period of several years, the articles become somewhat of a mess. The articles are a piece of your family; they explain the past and give you history about your family. Therefore, antique restoration is not taken lightly as it is actually a form of art, and it is not easy to perfectly restore the antique. Thankfully, there are ways to restore the antique to a better condition so it can continue to be passed to future generations.
The first thing you need to keep in mind is to always be wary of any do-it-yourself restoration kits. These kits may promise that your antique will look like it was professionally done, however that is not always the case in the end. More often than not it comes out looking worse than before. So take your time, and find a kit or study the process until you are comfortable enough to try it out on your priceless articles. Always ask someone who knows chemicals well enough to tell you what cleaners or waxes might harm your antique more than restoring it.
Once you've found a safe kit to use, you can move on with restoring your antique. Most times a good solid cleaning of the antique will enhance its life and, amazingly, make it look renewed. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions. Never use a cleaner that the manufacturer says will destroy your antique. Use a soft cloth and the correct cleaner; once you have cleaned it you will know if you need to do more to restore the antique.
Most times, if cleaning is not the only solution to your problem, try using a light sander and sand down the coarse pieces that might be damaging to your antique. Sand down until your antique looks much better than it was before. Do not sand too much or you will end up ruining your project. Next, take a small piece of the finish to a nearby hardware store and get the exact same finish. Once you have the finish, coat it over the piece you sanded, and make sure you apply it evenly.
Once you've finished, your antique should be in good physical shape, and you're ready to display your heirloom in your home. It is time to show off your antique as it will certainly become a conversation piece when you have company in your home. Be sure to keep your antique clean so that it will not need to be restored twice.