When my grandmother was a teenager, (circa 1910) her parents house was destroyed in a fire. I wasn't told how the fire began, but there was a fireplace in every room of the house. As my grandmother fled the house, she was able to grab the hall table and the entranceway carpet runner. Now, I have wondered all of these years (as my mother did) how my grandmother got the table out of the house. With the marble top on, it weighs about e60 lbs.She was about 5'2" and weighed about 95 lbs at the time. It was until much later on, did I understand how she did it. The carpet finally unravelled in the 1970's but that's pretty good for carpeting. My grandmother's table has been with me for decades. It was done in a very dark brown stain which no longer had a sheen to it and you could barely see the scrollwork on the base. The white marble top has some chips and dinges and has rust staining throughout. I was scared to touch it. I did not want to ruin it but it needed help. My sons already told me that they weren't interested in it and that I should leave it alone and sell it. But, the story behind the table, for me, made it priceless.
I wanted to make this 100+ year old table look pretty again. So, I took the marble top off and cleaned it separately. On the base, I used sander/deglosser to even her out a bit. Then I used General Finishes Antique Cherry Water Based Wood Stain on the base. I used two coats to give her more color than the dull brown she had. Once that dried, I used General Finishes Arm R Seal in satin one coat. Because she was so dark, I wanted her scrollwork to be seen so I used General Finishes Pearl Effects in Champagne in her scrollwork. I wanted light to reflect from it so I thought this would work nicely-and it did! I did two more coats of General Finishes Arm R Seal in satin to protect her base.
It was when I was cleaning the table that I turned her upside down and realized how my grandmother got the table out of her burning house. There were big holes on the bottom of each of her feet which meant she had wheels at one time. That's how my grandmother got it out, she rolled it out.
I can honestly say that I am quite proud of Grammy's table and I think she would be quite pleased as well.