“A Bright Idea!”

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Sometimes it takes me a while to come up with a catchy/clever name for my blog post, but this time around it came to me pretty quickly.  I completed a custom order desk for a young girl in high school.  She reminded me a lot of myself- organized, school oriented, diligent, and above all she knew what she wanted.  I met with her and her mother to see and consult over the desk.  It was the young girls great great great grandfather’s (I’m pretty sure that is correct), and it had been sitting in the basement for 17 years.  The young girls parents had planned on doing it, but life happens, and it never got done!  The desk was in rough shape to say the least.  It has been painted years ago, but the paint had semi peeled off, and the bottom legs were missing chunks of wood:

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The daughter and her mother asked if I could try to fix the missing wood pieces, and I was obviously up for the challenge.  I probably went through two containers of wood filler.  I had to build up the filler, sand it down, shape it, and repeat.  I did the best I could.  These pictures don’t look so hot because its wood filler, but with the finished product you can’t even see the difference!

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Once the piece was sanded and prepped, it was finally ready to be painted.  The girl picked two colors, a nice cream white for the base and a nice bright yellow for the top (hence my “bright idea” blog title…. I know I know, I’m good!).

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The desk was completely transformed, it was nice and smooth and freshly painted.  I ever so slightly distressed the detailing of the desk so that it would highlight the intricate work.  The craftsmanship on this desk is incredible, and the creamy white wasn’t doing those details any justice.  The light distressing truly completed it.

We hit a speed bump when it came to the hardware though.  So strange, usually antique pieces don’t have hardware that is standard hole to hole, it’s usually all weird sizes.  Well we ordered some beautiful hardware, but when I went to put them on, they didn’t fit.  We ordered 2.5″ because that is what I measured, but I was off by .5″… how could that be? I didn’t think to measure other drawers because why would they be different? So the mother and daughter went on hunt and found enough 3″ handles to finish he piece right? Wrong. When I delivered the desk, and I was putting on the hardware some of the 3″ handles were too big, and I was right back a the 2.5″ hole to hole spread.  What the???  Yeah, well it turns out that the bottom drawers are a 3″ spread, and the top drawers are 2.5″  so very strange.  Anyway, the pictures below are of the finished piece, but hardware is missing on the top drawers.  The mother and daughter were going to take the time to find a matching set.

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Upcycled Heirloom

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So my mother has had my great grandmother’s picture frames in the shed for as long as I can remember.  When I moved into my first house I took them with me, trying to figure out what to do with them, but instead they stayed in my basement.  When I moved to my new place, and saw the master bathroom with double vanity sink, I knew instantly I would transform the old frames into matching mirrors for the his and hers sink.  Here is what they looked like before:

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They were definitely roughed up, but a little bit of patching and love I knew it was fixable.  Years and years of dust and grime had built up on the frames.  I decided it needed a good cleaning, but was afraid to use anything harsh on them.  I stuck with good old dish soap and hot water.

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It was an instant improvement!  The chips that were on the frames needed to be patched.  I used wood filler, and did my best to shape some details in it, which proved to be difficult.

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I decided to use Rustoleum spray in antique bronze.  They came out awesome!!! Once they were all cleaned, patched, and painted, I brought the frames to Wayside Glass to have mirrors put in them.  I was honestly a little nervous that they would not be able to put the mirrors in the frames because they are so old.  However, they managed to do it, and they came out wonderful.  Thanks to my wonderful boyfriend, they were hanged perfectly and they completed the whole vanity look.  Here is the finished product.

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Apothecary, Quite Contrary!

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I finished this custom order for a client yesterday. It was for a very nice couple- the piece is the woman’s grandmother’s. They needed the piece to be updated so it would go with their home decor. I appreciated the fact that they wanted to keep this heirloom out so it could be seen, and continue to be a part of their lives.

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The piece was in great condition. It had some minor chips that I was able to fill. It had a very thick coat of poly on it, and I knew I had to sand it well and rough it up so the paint would adhere. Many times I paint the inside of the drawers as well because it gives the piece a wholesome finished look, but I noticed this piece had been done before and they left the wood inside the drawers natural. I felt it was best to keep it the same way. So like Magiver (remember that show?), I used trash bags to tape around the drawer, so the overspray would not get inside the drawers.

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This was a custom order, so the couple picked the color.  They chose Olympic Paint’s “Rum Raisin.”  It’s a nice bold color!

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The prep work was done, the piece was patched and sanded. The two decorative points in the front were chipped so I re-pointed them. With my spray gun I painted it and sealed it.  We left the original hardware on there: adorable porcelain knobs.  Finally this is what it looked like when it was all finished!

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