Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Vintage Spare Parts

Never pass up a spare part found during your vintage scavenger hunts because you never know when you might find a use for it. Take this cool table for example...I found the wrought iron sewing machine base two years ago at an estate sale. While admittedly, it took up a little space in the corner of the garage (sorry hub), I knew someday I'd eventually find a top. At the very least it made an interesting place to hang tools!

Voila! Two weeks ago I stumbled across this red and white porcelain top with no base...I looked it over...would it be a good fit?? Yes - it was the perfect size - and now I have a fun table made from blended pieces from different eras. Blended pieces are actually called "married" pieces and can be from the same or different eras depending on your taste! So this is one marriage that is fun, funky and should actually last beyond the dried ink.

Be sure to be on the lookout for spare parts and email me pictures if you make a good marriage!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

And The Beat Goes On...

History has turned the page...the beat goes on...the beat goes on.

While history might have turned the page on this old radio cabinet, it has been given a second chance with some old-fashioned elbow grease, a couple of extra parts and fresh paint. Unless you are a serious radio collector (which I'm not), these cabinets are wonderful to use in bathrooms, guest rooms, hallways - any place that you might need a little extra storage. Standing at just 5' tall and less than 3' wide - they can add some extra vintage charm even when you have limited space. (O.K. so some radio buff is aghast at what I've done to a perfectly good cabinet!!)

Of course the first step was to thoroughly wash down the cabinet with damp rags and soap - it seems like I always decide to revive pieces that have been stored in a barn for a few decades. Next I had to decide what to do with the interior shelves - they had numerous predrilled holes for the old radio wires. I chose to leave them intact and apply a thin layer of wood (luan) that covered the holes without adding much thickness to the shelf. I then painted the entire cabinet with two coats of semi-gloss latex paint inside and out. The end result is that you can't tell I added anything to the shelves - the luan looks like it has always been there.

I left the back panel intact (you can see the holes in the back on picture #2) in case it's ever used as a stereo cabinet (a fitting use) or TV/DVD stand.

My last detail was added at the end...these adorable antique cast iron knobs!!

I removed the original art-deco handles since they just didn't match the painted end result. To add an even tougher twist, the old handles were screwed into the wood ( not bolted) to allow the doors to fold flush when fully opened (see picture #2). Finding great knobs with wood screws built in was a challenge and I had to be patient and spend some time treasure hunting. However, I finally found the perfect knobs on eBay and they were definitely worth the wait!

From start to finish, this radio cabinet project took about 2 weeks to complete, not counting the weeks of searching for the perfect knobs. So...that being said...I hope this blog inspires you to go find the nearest barn and rescue the poor forgotten furniture that waits inside!