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Antique Restoration Education and Training Program Overviews

Formal education and training in antique restoration is rare; however, there are various ways to become trained in the technical aspects of antique restoration. Studying furniture restoration and finishing may open a career path in antique restoration.

Essential Information

Furniture restoration training teaches woodworking and finishing techniques for the restoration of wooden antique items. The art of refinishing aims to restore each item to its original quality without sacrificing its historical value. Because antique restoration often involves fixing and refinishing antique items, learning traditional building and refinishing skills can create an understanding of how old furniture was built and how to optimally restore it.

  • Program Levels in FIELD OF STUDY: Formal education and training is rare
  • FIELD OF STUDY Program Fields: Woodworking, carpentry and furniture restoration
  • Other Requirements: learning traditional building and refinishing skills

Program Coursework

Students of furniture restoration and finishing programs engage in hands-on workshop training to learn repair and finishing methods, such as removing, applying and reapplying stains and finishing oils. Students may also learn how to properly handle and care for antique wooden items and make small repairs. Possible topics of study include:

  • Wood finishing techniques
  • Antique furniture conservation
  • Spot repair
  • Woodworking
  • Furniture making

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

In 2013, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported annual median salaries of $28,470 for furniture finishers, who often work with antiques, and $40,020 for museum technicians and curators, who might restore art, textiles and artifacts. The BLS predicted slow employment growth in both fields, at 3% for furniture finishers and 7% for museum technicians and curators, from 2012-2022.

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