Sunday, February 7, 2021

Curbside Sewing Desk Revamp

It was a good day.  A good, fun day in my twenty-one year old F150, ninety degrees and no air conditioning, checking out our town's annual clean-your-house-out-and-get-your-crap-picked-up-for-free week.  

Any day spent with a good friend having a heat stroke next to you going from junk pile to junk pile on the curb picking up free treasures and well... junk... is a fun day.  In fact I'd go so far as to say I hadn't had that much fun since the day the rats ate my baby sister. Which is actually a Robert Bloch quote, who I'm not even familiar with, and if you must know the rats didn't eat my baby sister.  Just her little finger. My sister is alive and kicking. She kicks especially hard when I eat more than my half of the chicken sandwich we were supposed to split. Or when I talk to strangers too long in public. 

The great thing is, the town usually holds it's village-wide garage sales the week before "junk week" starts, so anything that doesn't sell gets put on the curb.  I had actually eyed this sewing desk at the owner's sale... but I'd already bought so much from them I had to return with my truck, so I turned it down.  And wouldn't you know it... there it was in the free pile the next week. Score!

Since most of the veneer was peeling, I took off all the handles and used a putty knife to remove the top layer of veneer on the drawer fronts.  There was no way no how to get those top pulls off however as they were faux drawers and no matter what, I couldn't finagle my screwdriver back there.  I didn't want to replace the hardware since I was totally digging the style, but they needed an update for sure.  Look no further than Rust-oleum's hammered spray paint.  Man I love that stuff. I woudln't normally spray hardware while it's on the piece but well shoot, I already told you I couldn't get these two off so I surrounded them carefully with painters tape and paper for the overspray.

Before you ask about the paint color, because I guarantee someone will, don't.  I have no idea.  I use mistints and mix my own colors from those mistints.  I'd like to call this one Kammy's Slatey-charcoaly-grayish-black.  Aye, so totally professional. 

I hope you all try to support local businesses, especially after the hard hit most of them took in 2020! I was out putting my money where my mouth is, doing some Christmas shopping a couple months ago at Brother's Outdoor World in Jackson, MI when I spied my desk being used to display all these adorable snowmen! Brother's Outdoor World is not just a landscaping company like most people think. It also has an adorable little shop full of local goods! If you're a local-yocal, go visit them soon and tell them I sent you. :)

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Sunday, January 24, 2021

Mid Century Makeover {Blonde Dresser Set 1950s}

So I'm calling this "blonde" wood and I'm not sure if that's technically correct or not, but you've seen these blondish-greenish-tannish dressers before. If you google in "blond dresser" your screen will fill up with images of these - so there's that. I swear everyone's grandma had this set in one of her spare bedrooms. But it definitely has a greenish hue to it... kinda like when us blondies went swimming too much as kids and the chlorine turned our tow-heads to seaweed-heads.  Iowa summers could be torturously hot and there was a summer or two when my mom must have just wanted our belly-aching to quit and would drop us off for the afternoon at the Parkersburg swimming pool - if we got our chores done.  "Here kids, paint this hay rack and IF you get it done by lunch time, you can go swimming." To us poor kids it was better than... well just about anything. Ha.

Unlike most of the furniture I get that is in a dastardly state of repair, these were in great shape! 

I got a little crazy redoing furniture this summer and just plumb forgot to take pics of the process. So all ya got is this hammered copper spray paint I used on the hardware.  It's my el favorito! Hammered spray paint. Don't go living another day with out it, kay?

So if you need more explanation than just the pretty photos, I painted the main bulk of the dresser with a slate blackish DIY chalk paint and distressed all the edges with sand paper.  I sanded the top and ledges in the middle and on the bottom just enough to take the green tint off and make it a true blond wood (towhead blond, not  the chlorine-induced seaweed blond).

Ahhhh, isn't it just gorgeous? Can I say that without sounding like I'm totally patting myself on the back?  Probably not.  But dang, it's good looking now.

Now the long dresser.  This one got almost the same treatment, except I took the sanding to a whole 'nother level and good grief that was dumb.  I should just stopped like I did the other one.  But no... once I got going, there was no turning back. About half way through it got totally stubborn and I think I blew through more sand paper than I have on ten other dressers total.

The result of all that sanding and taking it down to the bare wood?  When I put the same exact walnut stain on it, it pulled red tones out of the wood and ended up well... with a reddish tone. I still love it, but I didn't think I could sell them as a set any longer because the wood finishes didn't match in the slightest!

Would you be surprised if I told you I have the same tall chest of drawers in my son's bedroom?
And I've never touched it? It's old school blond-green been chillin' there for several years waiting to be painted....  Kinda like the plumber who always has a drippy faucet I guess....

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Friday, January 22, 2021

Just Say No. Or not. {Buffet Before & After}

Every time I pull in my driveway with another load of crap treasures, my neighbor shakes his head and reminds me how I told him I wasn't going to say "yes" to any more furniture until I got rid of what I had. But how can I say no when someone says "You can have it, or it's going in the dumpster".  What? What a terrible lonely way to die! Someone once spotted the glorious wooden piece of their dreams in the furniture store ad and spent their precious wedding gift money on it, knowing right where it was going to go on that shag carpet, storing the china they registered for at Younkers and will never eat off of.  I can't stand the thought of something that once held crystal candy dishes about to be holding rat droppings and surrounded with rank poopy filled Pampers and moldy Campbell soup cans.

I even practiced saying "no" in my head.  Doug Moe was having one of his estate sales in the Estate Barn in Parma.  He greeted me when I pulled up with a "Hey, you can have that piece for free if you want.  Just need to get rid of it".  I tired to say no.  It looked bad. Real bad.  I didn't want to mess with it.  "Nooooo.....noooormal people, NORMAL people, would say no to that, but I'm not normal so throw it on my truck.  And just like that, I knew I would never be able to say no to free furniture.  

What I thought was mold around the bottom and creeping up proved not to be when I cleaned it and it just reappeared minutes later. I do believe something had splashed all over it that took the finish off so as soon as the wood would dry, the spots would just pop back up. I gave up.  It was clean, so who cared.  I painted it with a gray homemade chalk paint. Since I wing everything, I figured the solution to the awful top would just fall into my lap after I finished the bottom.

It kinda did. I had randomly gotten this wooden top from an old farmer down the road who had made it for a project and never used it.  As fate would have it, it fit the top of this buffet TO A "T".  How does that even happen??  Someone out there sending "good project vibes" to the Korner? If it was you, I'm grateful.

By the way, if you ever need shabby chic white frames... get your butt over to the Parma Antique Mall where I usually have a decent stash for sale.  And if I don't have what you want, go to my friend Becky's booth.  She has them too.  But be a peach and look at mine first. I'm the underdog dealer of the two of us. 😅

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Sunday, January 3, 2021

Library On The Landing Makeover {Vintage Sofa}

I had already gotten a light blue tufted vintage sofa from Darin.  About a year ago.  It took some serious brute force to get it up over the banister and into the upstairs bedroom of our Airbnb, but we got it in there.  And then I promptly regretting not keeping it for my own house.  It was LIGHT BLUE!  VINTAGE!  A TUFTED SOFA!  What was I thinking???  But after all the effort of getting it into it's present spot... I knew the males on the property would have my head if I asked them to try to get it back out. (Click HERE to see free sofa #1 in our Airbnb).

And then I got the following picture texted to me a couple weeks ago from my buddy Darin (Michigan Ave Antiques)." Kammy, two free couches.  Come and get them ASAP if you want them." 

 I skidaddled over there in a jiffy. 

  Apparently I took forty two seconds too long for Darin and I got there with no one to help.  I drug Shana out of her office a block away at Edwards Jones and together we hefted it into my truck.  May I suggest Shana if you ever need colorful commentary and entertainment while you move something. Shana, maybe you should keep a coat at the office just in case this scenario needs to repeat itself!

I had no idea where I was going to put it when I said yes to the lovely beast, but as I drove the one mile home it became clear in my head that it belonged in the "library on the landing" at the top of the stairs.

Shall we have a look-see at the photo that was on Zillow of this space while it was in foreclosure?

Nice.  Blank slates are a homeowner's dream. 
It's had several different looks over the six years we've lived here... 
I'm not even going to show you the first couple arrangements because they're so embarrassing.
This picture was one of my rather "hodge podge arrangements" from a few years back:

And more recently, as in two weeks ago, it looked like this:

Now there's nothing wrong with it's latest look... but I was ready for something new. Plus, those chairs would go perfect in my master bedroom!

And now, behold today:

The rug I found whole home in Iowa for Christmas at Home Goods, which was pretty much my only expense in this makeover ($59 for a 5x7) and then these wall hangings which I painted and had bought once at a yard sale for a buck a piece.

I can call this the library because the white book shelf is full of books, as are the wood cubbies you see on the walls peaking out of the left corner of this next photo:

Last month I shared the white cabinet's makeover HERE.  And I've already moved it out of the master bedroom, which is what I did it for!

My beautiful kitties make it look extra purrfect.

I really screwed up the coloring on this next photo, but I wanted to share the awesome view from this window of the backyard!  Notice the windmill in the back! :) (Click HERE to read my post on our windmill). 

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