I have been polishing furniture and interiors for more than 30 years. When I started polishing, a lot of furniture, mainly Georgian and Victorian pine, was being stripped of paint and waxed to show the beauty of natural wood. Today’s fashion for painting furniture has seen many good mahogany and other hardwood period pieces ruined as paint might go easily. It can be very difficult and time consuming to remove as the paint goes into the grain and can be extremely difficult to remove, especially on veneered surfaces which can only be lightly sanded.
The colour is perhaps the most important consideration when buying antique furniture and this affects the value greatly. Repairs can be carried out to bring a new lease of life but good colour/patina is very difficult to achieve.