Well there’s nothing like a quick little project to breeze through and spiff up your house is there? ….. unfortunately I know nothing about that idea. Quick… NEVER, Easy… RARELY, Spiffed up… POSSIBLY! Thank goodness for blogging because I had to go back to figure out when the heck I started this refinishing project…. turns out April 23rd! Good grief, I’m slow. Okay so it only took me 6 weeks minus the two I couldn’t work … so 4 weeks! It ain’t love but it ain’t bad!
I have a million pictures so please excuse all the visuals… but I took a ton.. so I’ll just get it over with here and now!!! (get ready to scroll and thanks for hanging in there) First things first… thanks to everyone who helped me work through the whole idea of painting part of this project. In the end I decided to try to stick to the original look of the cabinet which was all stained wood. The great thing was that if it didn’t work out I had lots of love for the back-up plan to paint the sliders. It was a win-win in my book… so THANK YOU EVERYONE! After stripping, sanding, painting, and clear coating everything (twice) I’m happy to say it went better than expected. Here’s a quick look and then I’ll break it down.
A little reminder of what this troublesome corner looked like when I asked for help.
Okay, so as you can see from the picture above there were two different finishes to deal with here. The insides were painted and the outsides stained and cleared. I decided to NOT re-stain but accept whatever was there and just clear coat with Satin Polyurethane. The insides painted up really well after an oil based primer. You can see what a lovely color the wood turned when I applied the poly. Very rich in color. I am so happy.
Everyone warned me that the stain would be a nightmare to match for the end piece and all the trim… but I was determined to try. WELL it was a nightmare X 10. But you guys warned me! I’m stubborn and I only quit when I break down in tears and there were no tears (yet) so I kept going. I spent 3 days trying to match this right. It’s not perfect but it’s so damn close I could pinch myself (and I did!)
Obviously I tried a lot and even mixed a few. Some too brown, some too red, some too light or too dark. It was not my favorite part of the project. THEN BINGO, something so close I couldn’t complain. I had it!
after wiping the stain from the trim above… it was a pretty damn good match to the trim on my cabinet.
The top of the cabinet is a white laminate and that’s pretty common for the era and it’s in excellent shape so I didn’t touch that. There is a section that looks like a desk or vanity. I spend as little time as possible in the “mirror” so I wasn’t interested in a vanity per se. I wanted it for jewelry. It started out looking pretty shabby….
Old nasty contact paper gone, everything sanded and painted… it was a big improvement.
There were these little “cubbies” in there that sit on the ledges inside and can slide side-to-side. I sanded and painted them and then gave them a new treatment for the bottoms.
I cut left over mat board and covered them in a grey felt making sure to put in little tabs so I could pull them out easy to clean. I ended up using this type of “lining” for the entire jewelry cabinet.
I put the finished top back on the hinges and WA-LAH… a cabinet for some of my jewelry.
I make most of my jewelry so this is only about 1/4th of my crap. I definitely need to purge and get rid of some stuff. It’s EVERYWHERE… but that’s for another post. I decided to use this for my “everyday” stuff. I love sterling silver and thought it looked pretty against the gray. I used inserts on the bottoms and back too.
The little cubbies slide side to side so you can use the entire bottom of the “drawer”.
ON the back I rolled up some felt and put the rolls together to hold rings. I might modify this at some point but it works for now.
There was a drawer glide missing on one of the drawers and of course trim on the “bad” end of the cabinet had to be made to match the other side. Richie did a good job on this.
I’m a little freaky about lining my drawers and shelves… so I had to take some time and add a little paper to the bottoms. It looks prettier… even if nobody sees it but me!
We determined that most of the wood was maple and possibly some birch… but we stayed with maple with everything we had to replace. Truth is that wood just doesn’t look like it use to. Of course that means the grain and quality. I also had to keep in mind that solid wood and ply-wood will take on stain and finish differently giving it slight color variations. Not to mention this cabinet has taken on 50 years of a patina that just can’t be reproduced. So in the end it’s not exact and perfect.. but it’s good enough for me.
The wood color definitely changes throughout the day depending on how much light gets in and where it hits. The pic below was at night. A more even view, I guess.
So there it is and with only minor tweaks left on the project. BUT of course there was one LAST chance for tears…. so as things go at the “Goode” house, I couldn’t make it out without a few. I went to put in one of the sliders that had been drying in a back room of the house on top of a work table and realized that the cat must have tried to jump on it because there were 3 distinct claw marks on the top of the freshly coated wood. (head drops, eyes pool, and I feel like I’ve been punched!) Ten minutes of slow breathing and I popped that sucker in place and will eventually fix it. It’s like a new car, ya know… that first scratch kills you… but also breaks it in. It’s all good.
Thanks again for everyone’s help and encouragement. This was a pretty big project but I’m really pleased. Now to just get my clothes out of boxes and back in place and we can move on to the floor. There’s always more…..