Friday, April 1, 2016

A is for Antiques, Old Stuff and stuff that just looks old

My newest oldest!

I am seriously in love with this piece.  I cleaned it up a little and beautiful! 

The pulls are amazing and the detail is charming! 

I saw a definition of Antique on Facebook the other day that said: Grandma had them, Mom sold them, I bought them back.    That pretty much explains my life in a nutshell.   My grandmother's kitchen was filled with a big old stove, a tiny refrigerator and the most amazing collection of cookie jars and cute things you have ever seen.  In that kitchen, on that big old stove, she baked some of the most amazing, love filled concoctions you could dream off and made the worst spaghetti on earth. My grandmother was Hungarian and somehow Italian food cooking was not something she could master.  It could be the tomato juice she used instead of pasta sauce.  That's just a guess.

My dream kitchen will have one of those big old stoves from the 1940's in white with red trim and if I can ever afford to replace the cookie jar my mother lost (shout out to mom who I still adore even though she lost the Little Red Riding Hood cookie jar promised to me by grandma when I was 7), that will be added someday.    I have had a love affair with history since I was a kid and today it translates into old stuff and junk.

The piece above is my latest purchase.   It is amazingly charming, old and well loved.  I have no idea how old it is exactly but what I do know about it is that it came from a friend of mine who is moving to Minnesota and that I fell in love with it the minute I saw it.  My friend said to me, "You could paint it and make it awesome."  I replied that this is not a 'paint it' piece.  This is a keep it like it is and put it somewhere to show it off piece.

I can't tell you exactly how I know not to paint this except that it is in really good condition, really pretty the way it is,  and I knew immediately that painting it would be a tragedy.
I have a love affair affair with old junk treasures.  Some of the stuff is awesome and some has potential.  Some needs to be painted and some doesn't.  My entire house is a work in progress and I am slowly filling it with well loved pieces or making stuff looked well love.

I have found pieces in the trash pile at my recreational land in East Texas.  Yes, my land has it's own trash pile.  There is no trash pickup out in the country and the people that lived there years and years ago just tossed everything in a pile. We take our trash with us when we leave but that doesn't fix the pile problem.  Truthfully, it scares me but I managed to find an amazing old bucket that I turned into a hanging planter so I got past my fear.

My kitchen is only 45 years young and at some point in the 90's someone did a remodel on it. They didn't do a really good job and the kitchen is terribly small.  When I moved in, the cabinets were all white and they looked hideous.  It wasn't a pretty white or a clean white and frankly, with no disrespect to all of you out there (and you are the majority) who love white cabinets, the artist in me is bored with white.   I kind of run to the beat of a different drum and my drum said turquoise and red 1950's style kitchen.   I distressed the cabinets and made them look old and thank heavens, my husband loves them.   Just a side note here, these cabinets are awesome.  Everyone who comes into my house just loves them.  The black isn't quite as dark in person but I am so glad I used a black glaze on them.  It has been over a year since I redid them and I am not even considering painting them which is a miracle for me. 

Do you remember these end tables your grandmother had?  These things were all the rage in the 1970's and they fit my home perfectly since it was built in 1970.   I don't do pieces from one single era because I like a lot of different things (None of which are mid-century mod)
but this was something I was determined to find and redo.   I like to think that when you save these pieces to love another lifetime, you are doing the earth a favor and yourself.  I have to apologize for this photo.  It is the best I have of them because the lighting in my living room even with every lamp turned on, is not good.   This is actually a lovely creamy mint green color paint with brown antique glaze for age.  No distressing.  (BTW, yes, I know I need a new camera.  I am using my iPhone because I lost the program for my Point and Shoot Sony and I want a 'real' camera next time but budget has to be met first!)

Lime finished Chest

This old chest of drawers, which I have featured in this blog more than once, and I never manage to feature with the actual handles that are on it, is amazing.  It was in terrible condition and had to be painted.  Unlike the buffet above, this piece needed serious TLC just to make it work.  I basically had to rebuild half the drawers.  I love how this chest turned out.   I had it for sale and nobody has ever purchased it and that is just fine by me. I realize that everyone doesn't need a high chest of drawers and the thing that is in vogue right now is the wide dressers that you can turn into media cabinets.   The thing is, this chest has character that mass produced furniture just doesn't have. It is probably 60 years old, maybe more, and when I was refinishing it, I thought about the families that used it before me.  The hopes and dreams and laughter and sadness this piece witnessed over the years.   This piece took an incredible amount of work and it doesn't photograph as well as it should but it is simply beautiful.   So pretty in fact that it is the inspiration for my guest bedroom remodel.   The queen bed that I have for the room will be finished in a antique grey and the colors for the bedroom will be white, yellow, blue, and grey.

So yes, I love antiques and old junk.  Whether you make something look old or find a new use from something that is old, there is nothing more amazing that bringing new life to something that was once well loved and should be again.

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