The House
September 1902

The House   | September 1902

DIY furniture design ideas
by Penelope

The first lesson I learnt with decorating is that inspiration comes from drawings. This article addresses reader's questions about fixing difficult design areas in the house. I get inspired by these drawings of beautiful furniture. This is beautiful furniture with the right highlights. You can adapt these designs to meet your own needs.

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1902 Corner Washstand
image  Corner Washstand, in answer to "Panto"


Where a good light is thrown in the corners of the room there is no argument that can be urged against the serviceable corner washstand and corner dressing table. The two original designs given herewith show inexpensive furniture suited for a small room and decorated with inlaid metal. There is no expensive carving or elaborate frame in these pieces, and 1 feel sure they will be the sort of thing you want.

1902 Corner Dressing Table
image  Corner Dressing Table, in answer to "Panto"

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It is rather difficult to make a good suggestion for your oak floor without actually examining it. No doubt the experiments you have made would increase the difficulty of treating the floors equally. The best thing to do, if circumstances permit, is to plane down and re-wax. If that is impossible you might have the surface scraped with an ordinary steel scraper to keep the wood as equal in colour as possible. After this you could use a special dark spirit stain, which will take fairly evenly through the wax. This stain could be obtained from Palmer’s, 78. Old Street, E.C., who would be glad to forward you a sample, with instructions if you wish.

I cannot quite gather from your letter what it is you want to remove the rain drops from. I might add that, before trying the scraping-the-floor method, you might scrub it with hot soda water and Hudson soap and allow it to dry thoroughly. After this treatment you may find the scraping unnecessary.

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Several times previously I have illustrated coal boxes to show readers the sort of thing required to match their furniture, and not, of course, intended as working examples for them to make up. As far as I can judge from your letter and photographs, the coal box I reproduce would be quite the sort of thing to suit your dining-room furniture.

Coal Box, in answer to Dane
image  Coal Box, in answer to "Dane"

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"Little Room"

The small rooms one finds in modern flats are perhaps a blessing m disguise, for they certainly have caused the creation of much unpretentious work of good design. Such a piece, l venture to think is this sketch for a fireplace. The free introdution of the tiles shown is a very good feature, and has the advantage of increasing the heat which the fire gives.

Fireplace, in answer to Little Room
image  Fireplace, in answer to "Little Room"

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About this article

This article is a reprint of an existing article, published in The House, September 1902. It is the intent of this website to present this article in human and machine readable form. Format and editing changes have been made. This article is provided for the purpose of enjoyment only.