Monday, May 20, 2013

The Little Dresser

Okay. I used to have a roll top desk. It was a lovely thing - probably the nicest piece of furniture in the house. But it was also a very large thing and I have to think back more than a decade to remember the last time I actually sat down at it and used it like, well, a desk. Mostly it held the bills and accumulated whatever miscellaneous pieces of paper that wandered in the door. So I've sold the thing to somebody who has coveted it for years and will actually use as a desk.. So to find a home for the various bits and pieces that were living in the desk, I bought myself a small dresser and refinished it.

The first step was actually the hardest. My usual thrift stores came up completely dry, then the second and third tier stores let me down. I even looked at some new ones. They wanted $70 and $110 for laminated chip-board junk I could twist with my bare hands. But the last store I stopped at, with an attitude more of "dotting the I's and crossing the T's" than any real hope, had just what I wanted - a small, simple wooden dresser. It had taken some hit points over the years, but it was sturdy and the price was right - $30.
I was sanding the first drawer when I realized I needed to get a picture!
I cleaned it up, and sanded it down.
I liked the handles, but one was missing, so all of them had to go.
I put 2 coats of MinWax Mission Oak PolyShades on it and added simple porcelain handles. It came out darker than I had really wanted, but it fits neatly in the home office. So I am a happy girl.
Pretty good for a first try in refinishing!
Heaven only knows what trouble this success is going to inspire me to get into!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

More Finishes, Major and Minor

First, the Major. The Oak Tree Sample is done! It's not a large a piece, about 8"" x 4", but I am quite pleased with it. Seeing as I can't even remember when I started it, I also count it as a major check-off on the Getting Things Done list and that makes me feel good, quite important on a week that is proving to be full of thorns.
I made only one real change on it, swapping a little cross-stitch motif between my initials and name with a satin-stitched star that I thought picked up on the shape of the eight-pointed star motif above it.

I may hem-stitch the thing, partly because I've never done any hemstitching and it would be good for me to learn, partly because I prepared this piece of fabric back in the days when I was using iron-on hem tape and I think  it would be good to that stuff off the fabric and away from the sampler entirely.

The "minor finish" involves an over-due Christmas present. A while back they were handing out a free print at the local library of a painting by Diane Pierce, a Florida artist I admire hugely. I snagged a couple, thinking one would be perfect for my best birding buddy. When Micheal's had a half-price sale on picture frames, and I had a good coupon I could couple with it, I got a basic black frame. The thing would look like Buddy Holly's glasses on Diane's osprey's, so I got a couple of cans of Rustoleum's Hammered Gold spray paint and Bob's Yer Uncle, as they say.
The Frame, ready for its transformation.

A dry and a wet Fly-Lady Rag - my best pals!

I think the final result is quite splendiferous!
Two check-offs on my Things to Get Done List in as many weeks. Yoohoo!