Tuesday, March 3, 2009

What is it about sawdust, a brush, and these two hands?

So today I put the last coat of stain on the cabinet doors. They look absolutely amazing! I can't wait to put them on tomorrow!

So I know there are many out there who don't have a clue what to do when it comes to staining furniture. But let me tell you, I was no expert either. I learned by doing. My first project was when I was about 15 or 16 and I wanted to refinish my bright pink dresser! Yes... it was bright pink and it was complete with blue puff paint (the kind you used to decorate t-shirts in the 80's) and that was around some fabric hearts that were glued on. Believe me.. it was hideous! My mom got it from a yard sale somewhere, and it had a matching night stand and toy box to go with it. But one mans trash is another mans treasure. Or at least we'd hoped.

So began my project. I started with the toy box, then the night stand and finally the dresser. It was a lot of work! I took off what seemed like 50 layers of different colored paint. First pink, then lime green, then gray...and on and on. It took some major sweat and blisters to get it down to the bare wood. I also learned that when you are using stripper chemicals that it isn't a good idea to do it in direct sunlight. You need to be in the shade or your chemical dries up and does no good at getting the paint off. By the time I finished stripping the night stand, and toy box I was pretty tired. But I still need to finish the dresser. I got most of it cleared up but something happened in my life that kept me occupied and I didn't have time for it anymore. We moved houses, I started at a new high school, and I got a job. I knew it would be awhile before I could focus my attention on the neglected dresser again.

Weeks, Months, and even years went by and eventually, the still unfinished dresser followed me into marriage. It looked awful but it worked for what we needed it for. Today I don't know where it ended up. When we graduated from college we sold the dresser because we didn't have room for it. Maybe today it is repainted with yet another coat of what I tried so desperately to get rid of, or some loving soul gave it to a new life with a beautiful stain.

After that, I found a new love. Starting from scratch! My husband built me a bookshelf with a cabinet on the bottom for Mother's Day. We built it together in a dark, moldy, basement on an unlevel floor. We could hardly see what we were doing but when we finally brought it out into the sunlight so we could carry it up the steps to the front door we were very pleased. From then on Dan and I have been trying to come up with other projects to work on to add to our collection of furniture. So far we have built a bed, (yes, Dan built a bed! complete with four drawers underneath) a dvd shelf, a rocking horse, and a kids table and chairs.

We are planning on building a coffee table for the living room, and maybe a cedar chest with a rounded top. There is something about creating something all your own and seeing it from start to finish that gives you such a sense of accomplishment and pride. We were meant to be creators.


Jenny-Jenny said...

Way to go builder Glenns!!

Bob Lazenby said...

It is so cool that the two of you work so well together in creating these projects.