"As a total beginner to any sort of furniture restoration this was the ideal workshop for me.
I wanted to understand how to smarten second-hand furniture that I bought from charity shops. Just for me, not as any kind of business. Oliver was able to explain how to French polish, step by step and provided excellent pre course notes with all the materials needed. He also emailed me afterwards a specific list of what to buy and what I could leave out as I'm not planning only doing loads of furniture.
I took 2 small pieces of furniture, one was in need of too much repair to French polish as a beginner, but Oliver showed me how to wax it, so I went home with that improved too.
Good fun day, would recommend!"
"A very useful and informative workshop.
I learned some techniques that I will definitely use going forward when recycling furniture.
Ollie was a great tutor and made me feel at ease as it was my first experience at this type of event.
I welcomed his advice on how to transform my piece of furniture which will take pride of place in my hallway.
A very relaxing and therapeutic day thank you."
"I did the 5 day professional furniture refinishing course with Ollie in April as I wanted to set up my own part-time business refurbishing vintage furniture. The course was excellent, covering everything from stripping, sanding, oiling/waxing and painting to get a very professional finish. Ollie is very patient and flexible in tailoring the course to your needs. It is a great mix of hands on practical work, alongside written notes enabling you to refer back when you need a reminder. Ollie is also very generous in helping with ad hoc queries post course when you need a little extra direction. I can’t recommend this course enough and hope to go back for more modules in future."
"Oliver is an excellent teacher with a wide range of experience and knowledge. The course is very hands-on and we all completed our selected pieces with expert guidance when needed. All materials were provided and explained and comprehensive course notes and a shopping list were provided after the course.
I thoroughly enjoyed this course and learned exactly what I was hoping to learn, which was how to apply French polishing. I would recommend Oliver as a teacher to anyone interested in finishing/re-finishing wooden furniture."
"Having tried (and failed miserably) to French Polish, this course was a god send. Ollie is fantastic, friendly, professional and tailored the course to my needs. Communication before, during and after the course was fantastic. Every step in the preparation and polishing was walked through and clearly explained along with a ton more unrelated but valuable tips on woodworking techniques to produce overall better quality pieces. If you want to learn how to French Polish, don't hesitate but book your course in this fully equipped workshop today!"
"Just completed a 3-day French Polishing course. Thoroughly enjoyable. Oliver gives clear instructions and keeps a close eye on what you are up to, checking your technique. He was able to help repair and replace bits from my piece that had fallen off or broken with age. Oliver was very knowledgeable and calmly explained the processes (more than once, as required!).
As this is a teaching event, I would advise taking one complex piece requiring several different skills to be learned rather than several simpler pieces where fewer skills are repeated."
"1 day French Polishing Course. I took two of my grandfather's mantel clocks to restore. Ollie patiently takes you through each individual step and checks that you understand and are following the process. There were 3 others attending, and it was great to see different techniques on these different pieces as they came back to life. Ollie shares lots of advice and tips and created a fun, supportive atmosphere.
The end result was stunning - I'm really proud of the clocks. I would highly recommend this course."
"A superb course. Oliver Piepereit was very welcoming when I arrived and was a patient and careful teacher, always obliging and willing to answer all questions. I am delighted with the results on various piano components that I took for practise."
"Ollie certainly knows his stuff and has the workshop and equipment to provide a great training opportunity. I attended for 3 days and focussed on the French polishing of a table and chair, and the preparation and rejuvenation of 2 other items. Ollie explains, demonstrates and monitors to develop the skills you need to achieve great results. Apart from gaining new abilities I really got to know some pieces of furniture that I have owned for some years and taken for granted. My eyes have been opened to look at furniture in a new way with greater appreciation of the craftsmanship of the product, and the joy from the natural material that is "wood"."
"Working on a 2 day french polishing course with Ollie is both instructional and fun. I had already done a 1 day course with Ollie and it was because I had enjoyed Ollie's relaxed way of teaching that i decided to do another course.
I am now hooked !"
"Ollie was great,gave clear and precise instructions and was very patient. Took my grandads old gramophone top to french polish. Very pleased with the outcome.Would highly recommend this course. Paul Roberts."
"I attended this course in November and was so inspired to do more furniture restoration as a result! As a complete beginner to all things wood Ollie was really responsive in answering my questions and helped me to decide which course would best suit my needs. I chose an ambitious piece of furniture to do up on the course (side board cabinet) but learnt so many techniques under the helpful guidance of Ollie: stripping down the cabinet, sanding, and french polishing - each step of the way Ollie advised on the best techniques (as well as health and safety advice) and I was so proud with what I achieved. Ollie was great at responding to my questions and giving me advice on further pieces after the course. The workshop is situated in a beautiful location, and I throughly enjoyed my time on the course and would highly recommend it!"
"Learnt how to french polish my table Small group of 4 people in the workshop a very easy going atmosphere
Ollie explained everything very clearly and checked each step as we worked
A lot of advice about products and how to continue projects at home
Would highly recommend"
"As a total novice to any sort of furniture restoration or care this was the ideal day for me! Oliver was increasingly patient and reassuring throughout the day as he shared his knowledge and skills. His workshop is fascinating, and a really relaxed environment to enjoy a day of creativity and learning."
"There should be a rating of Excellent **. Ollie is a fantastic tutor and has so much knowledge and experience. He is so calm and has such a huge (quiet) passion for wood and its qualities. I was on a 2 day French polishing course and had some lovely pieces, all pretty old. When the instruction was that we are taking this back to the wood I thought OK you are the expert. He was so so right to take it all back and go through the whole process. I had three items and his advice was spot on, two (2) needed the full works and the third (3) needed waxing and buffing - I came home with the goods and my wife thinks I am a hero. Not possible without Ollie's calm and fabulously professional guidance and advice. It was the best two days that I have spent working on a craft project and I will continue with it and go back for another good course. Great location, great company and simply brilliant outcomes. I cannot recommend the course enough and Ollie's choice of workshop music, so calming. It's a fabulous mental health spa....effort and great results."
"What a brilliant few days with Ollie in his workshop in the Cotswolds. I arrived with only basic skills, clutching my tired-looking bentwood chair...and a tendency to reach for the power sander! I left with a beautiful chair - that I felt incredibly proud to have brought back to life over the three days - and a much deeper understanding of the techniques, tools and products to do things properly and to a high standard. The graft involved in hand stripping and hand sanding isn't a walk in the park but it's so fulfilling to move step by step through the process...and of course getting to the shiny-gorgeous stage which is the most fun! Ollie teaches you to be patient, as he himself is a very patient teacher. This attention to detail as you focus on a single piece for many hours, is very therapeutic, clearing your mind of everything in your busy life as you concentrate hard on every detail of the piece you're working on. Everyone I mentioned my course to - and when I've shown them the finished chair - has said "wow that's very cool". If you're thinking about booking up with Ollie for a special present for yourself or a loved one, just do it. Whoever is lucky enough to attend will learn loads, have a fab time and great conversation, and will come away with a real appreciation for beautiful furniture and things done properly."
"A thoroughly enjoyable course, Ollie is professional, personable and patient, with the ability to teach in a clear and methodical manner. With Ollie's guidance, I managed to transform a small veneered chest of drawers, with pealing veneer, scratches, cup ring marks, and old wood worm holes, back to it's former glory, it was quite incredible. I would highly recommend."
"I thoroughly enjoyed the French Polishing workshop with Ollie which I recently attended. Ollie is extremely patient and has a huge amounts of experience and knowledge of working with different types of furniture from various periods. His knowledge of wood and materials is vast and he is great at explaining different techniques. The course is really practical and it was great to be able to get hands on so quickly and develop the skills and confidence to be able to continue to do more restoration projects in the future. I look forward to going back, learning more techniques with even bigger and better projects..!"
"I can highly recommend Ollie at OP Woodcraft. Ollie is highly professional, friendly and an excellent teacher. Ollie is extremely approachable and generous with his all of his knowledge and experience.
I recently attended the 2 day French Polishing course and came away feeling so much more confident and with 2 fabulous tables which had been stripped back, stained and French polished to a high standard over the duration of the 2 days.
Thank you Ollie and I hope to be back again before too long! 😊"
"Ollie's course merits a rating above Excellent. He gave clear instructions just the once and then left me to have a go myself, before coming back and gently correcting or improving my efforts. He also adapted the course structure to suit my own requirements. I went there looking for a better way of presenting my finished restorations and I came away with that in spades, plus two restored items I am immensely proud of."
"This was a fantastic course and Ollie is a great tutor. I have learnt a lot from him about how to bring wood and furniture back to life. Due to the variety of students and furniture pieces I also had the opportunity to learn about french Polishing, stains and painting. It was a really enjoyable and relaxing 2 days. I hope to do more courses with olllie."
"Ollie manages to balance imparting huge amounts of his vast knowledge and at the same time enabling you to build confidence, take on new techniques and stretch your own abilities. At the same time he approach is inclusive, appraising unexpected issues that arise and jointly agreeing options and solutions. In my experience this is the sign of a great teacher. I was totally absorbed by the process of transforming my piece of furniture but also building the foundations of knowledge for future practice and further skills development. It was a full on 3 days but hugely enjoyable, with good company and I feel confident that my skills have been well and truly expanded."