Some projects have countless layers and stages. This cabinet was one of those projects. It has been 9 months in the making but I’m ready to show it off at last! Here’s to Lockdown February affording me a few minutes of time to finally install the new hardware and put the doors back on.
Last spring I was working on figuring out how to make my living room work (okay I’m still working on figuring out the living room). I needed something for the TV to live on that worked in the space and I didn’t have anything that worked in my current furniture collection So I went to my old standby Craigslist. I measured the space I wanted it in and kept an eye on what people had to offer. Finally I found it. I arranged to drive out to pick it up and met the nice lady getting rid of it.
As usual, I had my “please tell me everything” sign on my face, so I got the whole story. They just bought this new house for their dogs (5 huskies) – even as a dog person, I find it kind of creepy when someone says “We bought the house for our dogs.” Mmmkay. Crazy dog people. We talked of new houses, needing to figure out different furniture, fencing (she and her husband were hiring out installing fencing after doing it themselves at the last few houses – yes, we did talk about each fencing project they had ever done and my own one in progress). This house had a dog room in the basement with a door heading right out into the big, beautiful yard. And there it was: the cabinet. This cabinet also had quite a story. My new best friend told me she bought it when she bought her first house at 22 (from a little Antique store in Depot town that closed shortly after that). She had painted it a few times over the year and just loved it. Most recently, before her marriage, she didn’t have a linen closet so she painted this cabinet to match her brass bed and filled it with towels and sheets.
Thankfully, I could imagine this cabinet not gold and knew it was the perfect size for what I needed. I gave her the $40, we loaded it into the CRV, and I headed for home, chuckling over the amount of information I’d gleaned from the visit and feeling really good about having found a great solution for the living room.
Over the next couple months, I started stripping, and stripping, and scraping, and more stripping. SO many layers of paint!!!!! I had initially planned to just paint over the gold, but it was really badly done- gloppy and gross. I knew I had to get past the gloppy mess in order to do a good job on this cabinet. This was in the middle of the big fencing project, so this was my relaxation project– scraping and stripping. (Yes, that’s right, I just said “relaxation project.” Shutty).
Finally I busted out the sander and sanded and sanded and sanded till it was finally ready. I also removed the back (which was rotting out a bit in places and made it just about an inch too deep). I initially planned to leave the glass in, but when I realized the glass didn’t actually fit the spaces (there was just enough space for tiny fingers to reach between the glass and the frame and hurt themselves– thankfully I realized it before anyone had the chance to do it). So out came the old glass.
I used Miss Mustard Seed Lucket’s Green paint to coat this beauty and topped it with furniture wax. Mmmmm I love the color and the depth the milk paint adds!
I put the cabinet in place and started using it while I tried to decide what to do with the doors. I eventually decided to replace the glass with bead board when I thought about what I was planning to store in here (movies, toys, electronics). No one really needs to see that, right? I also had to replace the hardware because the original stuff broke while I was removing it or so gunked over with paint I couldn’t stand the thought of trying to clean it enough to reuse it.
I love that this piece isn’t perfect. It is old, rustic, and fits the character of my rustic little house. I think it is one of my longest running furniture projects because there was so much stopping and starting before I finally finished it, but I love it! And I’m so glad to finally have it finished.