Manchester Mission Furniture Company is owned by craftsman Bruce Sawyer who has been making furniture since 1988. My passion for Arts and Crafts style furniture comes from time tested designs, and wood being crafted in such a way as to enhance its natural beauty. Arts and Crafts, or Mission style, as it is commonly referred to today accomplishes this. The ornamentation is in the simple lines and the wood itself and not decorative additions
The furniture is made with quartersawn white oak or cherry, upon request. Wood for each piece is carefully selected for similar grain and ray patterns in the white oak. Mortise and tenon joinery is used and pinned through tenons are used where it enhances design and appearance.
The finish is accomplished by fuming with high strength ammonia 26%. Ammonia reacts with the tannins in the white oak causing the wood to darken. Some furniture makers believe this appearance can be imitated by layering dye stains and pigment stains sealing each layer with shellac. This process however does not produce the rich patina that can only be accomplished by fuming. Each piece is then hand rubbed with four coats of oil or my own mixture of oil and varnish depending on the type of furniture. A coat of quality paste wax is applied to further protect the piece.
Wax should be used as necessary to keep the furniture looking nice. One to three coats a year should be enough to maintain the furniture. Wax buildup does not occur, each new application cuts through the previous layer leaving a thin coat as it is buffed to the desired sheen. Wax should be applied in thin coats only.