Considered to be one of the most beautiful ways to finish wood, French polishing is virtually unique in that polish applied today will adhere to polish first applied a hundred years ago. This means that, providing the original French polished surface is still intact, there is no need to strip it off and start again when restoring an antique piece. It also makes it the perfect finish to ensure that a new item of furniture will become an heirloom. This no-nonsense guide to the process of applying layers of shellac to create a high-gloss surface includes all you need to know from choosing materials and setting up your workshop to preparing the surface and applying the finish. There is also a section on resolving common problems and plenty of helpful, practical tips. Whether you are an accomplished woodworker or a wood finishes novice this book will lead you through the history of French polishing and then explain, in a clear and straightforward way, how to carry out the process. There is one project – one to restore an existing finish and one to apply the polish to a new item of furniture – that are fully illustrated and thoughtfully explained.