Office Storage Space

Before my office renovation, I had a metal file cabinet. It did its job but nothing really cool about it.

I needed something that would look cool or funky as well. I had thought about a storage ottoman but with a couple miniature jungle cats (in their minds), the fabric had to be right.

Then the idea came around the holidays during one of my movie marathons – an old trunk – maybe something that looked like it passed through Platform 9 3/4 a few times.

Just last week I found one at a salvage place.

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It was pretty filthy and the leather handles were broken and disintegrating. The inside smelled (and still does) of moth balls.

After a little bit of TLC and a set of caster wheels, it’s now ready to start earning its keep.

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Reupholstered Vintage Chair

Earlier this year, I bought this chair at a local vintage store. The intent was to eventually reupholster it to look like my other accent chair but maybe without the nail head trim.

I finally decided to tackle the project this past week. The first thing I did was sand down the old varnish from the legs and use use an oil finish. Some of the old stain remained giving it a reddish color. I also fixed any loose areas with clamps and glue.

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The next step was order a new cushion while I worked on the body of the chair. It took probably 8 hours to carefully remove the fabric so I could use them as patterns for later. I tried to save as much of the old stuffing as much as possible unless it was in bad condition.

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In addition to old fabric and stuffing, I found some money and an old Christmas label from 1987. I am almost certain this chair had been previously recovered since there were random nail tacks that I found. Then probably sometime during the 80s, it was refreshed with the cobalt blue velvet. The label is “Lineage” from the “Heritage Furniture Co.” I did a little search on that brand and it was sold off to Drexel around the 1950s so it is a possibility the chair was from that era.

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Putting the chair back together was painful, especially since my sewing is remedial at best. I took my time in getting things to fit and there were still a few booboos along the way. I used the heavy canvas fabric from the wicker cubes to line the bottom. I thought it would be fun to add a little bit of flair.

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I did change out the buttons for slightly bigger ones. The only problem was the center button ended up just slightly lower than the other two. 😦

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It finally added the legs this morning. All that needs to be done is to create a new cushion cover.

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While it wasn’t my best work, I now have an appreciation for those who do this for a living. This was HARD WORK. There were several times when I just wanted to load the chair back into my car, along with the roll of fabric, and take it to a shop to get it done. Perhaps if the imperfections get TOO bad for me to see, I’ll do just that.

 

Bathroom Shelves

After adding a towel bar, hand towel bar and stuff, I realized I needed some sort of shelf (or two) for small storage in the Guest Bath. The Moen Align series didn’t have a shelf that matched the design of the towel accessories. I looked at other bathroom shelves but nothing caught my eye.

I decided to look at using a floating shelf or two but steel ones were a bit pricey. That was when I decided to look at vintage and either spray paint it silver or go completely funky and do a brilliant green. Enter Etsy (one of my favorite sites now) and I looked at a few mid-century shelves that looked pretty cool, but didn’t say “buy me now!” for one reason or another.

Then I saw an ad for these industrial shelves. They were probably office type shelves but were relatively small (less than a foot across) but they were interesting with the curled edge. They completely captured my attention because they were industrial looking and were different. So I ordered 2. When I got them, there were a few rust spots and scratches. They were also in the blah government gray color.

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(Yes, the bathroom isn’t completely painted yet and probably won’t be until I figure out whether or not I just want to repaint the vanity and just replace the top or not. I’m currently leaning towards repainting the vanity cabinet and doing a new sink and faucet—but that probably won’t happen until next year.)

It was a quick project that I started and finished in a few hours. I first used a wire brush to get some of the more rustier areas clean before priming the pieces.

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Then I used Brilliant Silver paint on them (top and bottom—at one point I thought about flipping the shelves over so the lip would be on the top instead of the bottom but changed my mind on that). The first time I sprayed the tops, I got a splattered pattern so went over it again with some primer and then added another coat of the silvery paint.

When they finally were dry (which doesn’t take long in this Texas heat), I installed them. This probably took the longest because I couldn’t use my drill to screw them down because of the way they’re made. The cool thing was I had my small level set on the shelf so I made sure it was perfectly level.

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I debated whether or not to use a bright green, to complement the towels but they only had the big cans of spray paint and it would have been a waste of money. That was why I opted for the silver.

It’s not the same finish as the brushed nickel like the towel accessories (which was what I had originally wanted, but I think it works. The fancy soap is sitting on a piece of tile—a cool sample I got when I was looking at re-tiling the guest bath with actual stone tile (I think this piece is soapstone).

My Own Tanker Desk!

I’m now the proud owner of a (slightly beat up) tanker desk!

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It was on Craigslist for $60 and at first I was iffy about it because I wasn’t going to be able to haul it anytime soon. They offered to deliver it to me so I decided to look at it and noticed the retro legs. There were a couple dents and some rust on the sides but it hadn’t gone through the metal. The top was dirty but still in good condition. So I didn’t haggle (since they were delivering it) and it arrived yesterday afternoon.

I cleaned out the contents and there were some creepy things (a bug nest?) so that was quickly dumped. The last time it had been used was sometime in 2004.

I didn’t really clean the actual body yet but tried to remove the top and possibly disassemble so I could move into the garage. That didn’t work. I did however manage to remove the modesty panel before I pushed it inside.

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It’s a very bland, beige color right now and although I have named her Lola, she needs a makeover. Right now, I’m thinking a retro shade of turquoise or teal would be cool but maybe use a pearl finish (or metallic).

She’s in my garage and I’ll tinker with it over the next few months. Lola won’t be a 1 weekend project. I’m sort of treating her like a vintage car (since she’s heavy like one). My refinish process will be similar in process. I’m iffy on fixing the dents though, right now they don’t look too bad. I hope to clean the rust and further assess the damage in the next few weeks while also continuing to research on paints. 🙂

EDITED: I don’t think a pearlized paint will work since the shimmer occurs mostly outdoors. :-/ I’m better off doing metallic or solid color instead.

Retro Chair

I visited a cool vintage store yesterday and spotted this chair. IMG_2492

 

It was a 1960s blue velvet chair. I asked them if I could hold it until I grabbed some food but they couldn’t because they were having a sale this month and the chair was on sale for $100. Well, I really couldn’t pass that up especially since it had cool lines and stuff so I bought it and then grabbed lunch.

I brought it home and sprayed it down with Lysol in the garage. I was really excited because even though the chair needed reupholstering, I wanted to test out velvet before I bought the fabric (that stuff is spendy!)

I brought it inside and Puck decided to inspect it.

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The reversible cushion needs to be replaced with new foam but the rest of the chair is in pretty good shape (minus the fabric, of course). Eventually the 2 retro accent chairs will match, fabric wise. I am hoping to do much of it on my own but in the meantime we’re going to be product testing. 🙂