Archive for the ‘salvage’ Category

a curbie from looong ago!I found this cabinet

-looong ago-

on a curb.

Gutted and REbuilt it into a simple bookcase!

Offered it for sale–it didn’t.

Stashed it away until now– I have a new idea!

Let’s build on top of it!

from curbie to bookcase!

building a HUTCH from a window!

How about adding a top HUTCH

with an awesome arch-topped window frame!

I ripped some boards to 6″ wide, cut them to length for a base and sides.  I mitered the top of each side to receive and support a cleat.  I cut 5 cleats and attached with 3″ screws for the extra strength—you’ll see why soon!


I secured the base, sides, and cleats with counter-sunk screws.  I’ll conceal them with glued-in plugs and sand flat for an “invisible” connection.


I ripped 2 pieces of ¼” veneered plywood to 6″ wide for the top.  It’s just THICK enough to give a strong top, yet THIN enough to FLEX to the arched shape.

Starting with the OUTSIDE piece—I pre-glued each cleat, then bent and nailed the veneer at each cleat.  I used a belt sander to knock down the little bit of overhang to a flush/flat edge.

I laid the “hutch” face down and got out 5 clamps.  Pre-glued the cleats again and flexed the veneer into place.  I clamped the veneer at each cleat till things set up, then I nailed it all secure.

NOW the pictures to show you the process~

adding a base and sides~

adding cleats~

bending the veneer to the arch~the general outward appearance~creating the arched top~

creating the arched top~

creating the arched top~It's getting there!




I left the 2 outside clamps on over night–just in case!


Today I’ll sand, prime, and paint.  And I’ll decide on a back board—I’m considering ceiling tin!
I’ll have to take another look at the bookcase finishes too—so the 2 pieces “connect!” 



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a gift from the neighbors~Look what someone gave me~

and look what I’m doing with them!

I deconstructed one immediately—the legs are the START of a whole new table—a sofa table OR buffet!

O-M-G!  I think someone got PAID BY THE SCREW based on the MASS amount holding this table together!

Usually, I find these tables easy to make.  But this one was more of a challenge BECAUSE- the legs were not TALL enough. (side table height~sofa table height)

making adjustments for shorter legs~making adjustments for shorter legs~

The 1st adjustment was to cut a TALLER apron to gain back the missing height.  THE 2nd was to use some scrap cedar 4×4 to fill the difference.  I cut off most of the extra form on the band-saw, then a belt sander to shape the stiles the rest of the way in place.  I also doweled the two parts together.

The next picture I hope will help you see the rough shape (in front)  vs the fine-tuned shape (background).

filling the gap~

some of my drawer collectionNext—let’s add drawers to that big apron.

Y E S– I have a drawer collection too.  And 3 of those 4 matching drawers looked like a pretty good candidate!  Perfect in height and spacing.

Ordinarily, I would rip wood for a normal face frame–top and bottom rails, and connecting stiles.  I thought it prudent to leave the board/the apron WHOLE for more structure because of the “filler” leg stiles.

I used 3 different saws to make the cut outs for the drawers.

 The initial board/apron was cut on the table saw to width.


3 saws for the job- A circular saw for the top & bottom rails for the straightest/smoothest cuts.

A jig saw for the shorter sides/stiles.

A hand saw to finish off each cut clean to the corners.

I suppose I should back up here and show you my very “sophisticated drawer-planning.”

adding drawers, spacing, & cutting them out

cutting down the drawer boxe

This was last week, there’s more progress since

and I’ll be back soon with all of that.


 For those of you who didn’t know-
Here’s a simple diagram of a face frame.
I struck lines at each joint to show you their junctions.

face frame-

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the RED LACQUER TRAYAt some point I found each, bought, and used these trays in my decor.  Then at some point I didn’t need them anymore and offered them up for sale.  One was black~the other red lacquer.

I played with varying things to makeover the black one—but let’s face it,

everything I tried landed in the FAIL zone.  It happens.

trying to jazz up the black tray~


Above is my attempt at change to the Black tray, the Red Lacquer tray I left alone because it was really beautiful at Christmas.  Apparently, I was the only one who thought so–it didn’t sell.

So~I had another idea and ONE MORE attempt before I throw in the towel.  And THIS time I think I got it!

I painted both with a rusty-brown paint

now painted a rusty-brown...

I pulled some of my stock LATH–I love its thin, rough texture.  I sanded the long strips smooth and cut to length to fill and REface the interior.

REfacing the interior with LATH

I stained and sealed each and at last

I think they look


And I won’t even mind if they still don’t sell!  ; D


AT LAST~they look awesome!AT LAST~they look awesome!

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my mirror probably salvaged from a piece like this~I love mirrors.  ALL kinds of mirrors.  They can really add to a design!  And I do have MANY in my collections.

O k a y, I confess–I have MANY things in my MANY collections.

But it’s funny the things you REfind when you’re looking for something particular and you’ve got (cough-cough)a lot of stuff- to dig look through.

The smaller mirror I had was probably salvaged from something like this Victorian piece.  I bought it at a boutique flea market a few years back.

my mirror and a salvaged door header

When I stumbled back on to it -during my search for the sewing table top I knew I needed to work it into a project for Nellie’s!

I pulled one of my many door & window headers to pair with it and

make a very simple shelf!

I disassembled the header, repaired its necessary issues, and cut it down.  I’d recently stripped its detail trim for one of my Bespoke Birdhouses, so I had to search my stock for something to put back.

cutting down the header, adding a detailed trim, and attaching the mirror-

Above-  the header cut down and REassembled, some very small quarter-round added back for detail, and the mirror is now attached.

The picture below shows you how I attached the two pieces—I pre-drilled on the diagonal -or- toe-nailing fashion to screw them together FIRMLY.  It’s –different– from the current trend towards Pocket Screw joinery, and I’m really not sure just how to explain the difference–but there isI learned the old-school way and I’ve been doing this a looooong time.  

attaching the mirror-

THEN it was on to painting.  I sanded, primed the whole piece, and then drove myself crazy trying to figure out a color.  Which I knew it would need for Nellie’s Barn Sale–that’s what they’ll be looking for!  And my 2 yellows were still on my mind.

I purposely painted out in the full out sun.  BECAUSE- the paint is old and a bit thick, and it would “set up” quickly for what I intended.

I mottled the two colors together, and as soon as it “felt dry” touching it, I took a soft dry rag and started rubbing areas to peel off paint.  The paint isn’t actually dry so it hasn’t affixed to the wood yet.  If I couldn’t do this in the warm sun I would have used a heat gun.  *These were some of the tricks PRE-chalk paint.

my small'ish mirrored shelf

a detail shot of a 1970's plastic, garish gold mirrorsNow, the other mirror.

This too was kind of buried in the stashes, and, w-e-l-l–

out of sight~out of mind. 

At some point I primed away the garish gold these plastic frames originally came in.  But the poor thing was SO dirty–it didn’t LOOK very white-primer.

After I scoured it clean again, I grabbed a can of the soft gray spray paint Chalk paint and sprayed small sections at a time and wiped away the paint.  It tinted the white and left the gray in the voids for more dimension.  SIMPLE.


a 1970's plastic, garish gold mirrors

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With a good imagination, you can come up with all kinds of things to do with these old cabinets!

With the WHOLE or salvaged parts!

Nellie's JUNE Barn Sale!

Like this old project!


While in a mad search for the original top to the sewing machine cabinet I was just working on, I stumbled back onto these drawers.  I’d forgotten totally about them.

I’m working on SO MANY projects for Nellie’s Barn Sale in June and needed some “cash & carry” items.  Hmmm. . .

antique sewing machine cabinet drawers

These are the drawers.

Pretty “standard,” right?

But they’re nice.  And still desirable.  And I’m not going to mess with them!  Entirely.

Are you surprised?

I found them in a flea market originally, but only the left side was available for purchase.   I stripped the appliqués from it and used some in an immediate project soon after.

I decided to just clean things up and not take away the “ghost” of the missing appliqués.  I also decided to leave the wood raw—no wax, no sealer.  Raw.

I DID make a top for it

and add an amazing handle!

the sewing machine drawers~

the sewing machine drawers~


Cash -and- CARRY!

Cuz’ sometimes going


is BETTER!  ; D
*OR, showing restraint!


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. . . one more LeapFrog project share. . .

the Kidney Bean Table!When I ran to the strippers for something else the other day–I left with this unexpected cutie-p’tutie!

They said the woman totally balked at the restoration price tag and just didn’t want the table either then.  Did I want it?

Uh~ y  e  a  h !

I wasted no time & jumped right in!

(Believe me~pic  looks MUCH nicer than reality!)

I sanded and waxed-I took it fully apart, painted the legs, sanded each tier smooth and clean, then waxed them.  When all was set up I put it all back together and added old salvaged wheels!

(It needed a little boost in height!)

A Cutie-Pie &  Quickie both!


the Kidney Bean Table!

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I’m leapfrogging over a bunch of other projects to this-

a STAR planter project that I’m playing with!

This idea has been swirling around my imagination since Christmas (I was playing with LOTS of stars~remember?)–last week I finally started putting it to WOOD!

I was thinking about a star -short and squaty- made into a planter.  I grabbed some card stock paper and toyed with shapes.  When I (finally) got something I liked, I traced it on scrap boards and cut it out with a jigsaw.  Then it sat while I worked on other stuff -and problem solved its next step/part/move.

STAR planter

cutting the ceiling tin-Cut to yesterday

I wrapped and adjoined my 2 star shaped cut outs in ¼” veneered plywood cut to 4½” wide.  I “caulked” each seam with construction adhesive to seal it and strengthen each joint.  ESPECIALLY because- at the last, I decided to wrap it in some of my scrap pieces of antq ceiling tin.

I used an extra piece of the ¼” veneered plywood as a ruler/guide to make my cut- using an angle grinder for metals.

   Then- I began forging it around the star shape.  NOT the easiest thing to do on those INSIDE angles!

-and my arm is EXHAUSTED for it!

I –like it– but now I’m thinking about a design “adjustment.”  STAY TUNED.

Well~ it’a an IDEA in progress~


a STAR planter

a STAR planter

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