Allan Blackburn column

Owner of GB Antiques Allan Blackburn.
Owner of GB Antiques Allan Blackburn.

Following on from last week’s mutterings about cleaning your valuables, this week I want to talk more about repairing and restoring your treasures.

What if the worst happens and something valuable is broken?

The most important thing to remember is don’t try and repair it yourself.

Time and time again I see visitors coming into the centre watery eyed with a beloved smashed piece they’ve tried to repair themselves, and their attempt at repairing it has often caused more damage than the accident did 
in the first place. Modern super glues are very

difficult to remove and if you make a mess of it, it will ultimately cost much more to repair.

It’s also important not to put the two broken pieces together, further damage is often caused as they scrape together.

Finally, keep all the pieces, even the tiny splinters.

It really is best to then contact a professional to restore your precious ornament.

Professional restorers can do incredible things with smashed vases.

Even the most shattered porcelain can be rebuilt with epoxy resins.

If necessary, they can even be re-enameled and glazed.

Delicate patterns too can be re-created.

Full restoration can cost anything from £10 to £1,000.

The price is dependant on the amount of damage and the difficulty of the repair, as well as the standard of repair the owner needs.

Good restoration can be expensive, but bad restoration is always much more expensive in the long run.

Get a firm estimate before you hand over any of your treasures.

Whether or not you choose to invest in restoration will no doubt depend on the item’s sentimental and monetary value.

Restoration is not just reserved for porcelain and pottery (even if they are particularly fragile), old furniture, clocks and even teddy bears all benefit from professional repairs.

So don’t worry.

As you’re picking up the broken pieces of Great Auntie Mabel’s coffee pot, handed down the generations, take heart – virtually any damage can be repaired.