Using What You've Got

When a gift is given I look at it with a very open eye and mind. What could it be used for? What kind of life can I give it. Is it needed and usable. If not for me then as a gift for someone.

I was given two very 1960' TV/bookshelf cabinets which had seen better days. They were solid oak, so I knew they were worth saving. I wish I had a real picture of them as I started to dismantle each one, not knowing what use I would eventually have for them.

In retrospect these were one of the most loved and useful pieces of furniture I have ever gotten. They actually weren't a gift. I was ask if I would take them to the dump by a client. Sure. My house first...

There were two 23" deep cabinets. There were no shelves at the beginning. So we had to add those.

This picture is as close as I could come to what they resembled. One of the two cabinets did not have a back.
I never just throw something away. I will save it until some inspiration or need arises.

I needed bookshelves but these were just a little deep for a usual bookcase so I knew I would need to make something useful from them. We built pine open fronted doors and stapled chicken wire to the back.
 We also added a couple of cross boards for stability. These cabinets were six feet tall. I didn't want all my unorganized junk showing, so the doors were a must.
This is our first reincarnation of the TV cabinets. We split them up added feet for height and an angled platform between them for my computer area. I don't like my computer on my desk. But it needs to be close to where I am designing and drawing. We added another find. an abused oak bookcase. I painted them an antique green from Sherwin and Williams called Svelte Green. I sanded them back as if used for a hundred years and then antiqued with a chocolate wash. I sealed the whole mess with a satin poly. I also had found this old oak desk on the side of the road and I made it my own.
When we moved I took these bookcases and newly doored bookcases with me to my new cottage. This is how I made them work again in a very tiny space.
We were heating our little cottage with a little electric fireplace. It works great. Couldn't stand to look at it. We brought in the old bookcases.
This is the results and how we did it all.
My wonderful hubby built an enclosure and raised the electric fireplace. The old green bookcases were place on either side. He attached them to the wall studs for sturdiness. The upper blank area was wired for TV. So we built up the top of the fireplace area to make it all look more custom. I used two beloved rod iron rose pieces and overlapped them attaching them to the blank space above the fireplace.
I then tiled the surround with a pretty cream glass tile. This helps bounce light around in my tiny space. I used an italian chair rail along the top of the tile. I love the textual look.
I bought small feet from Lowes and then added six inches of 4x4 to make the feet taller.
Hubby Crown molded all the kitchen cabinets and these new additions. I painted the red cabinets several colors of red and then antiqued them. The kitchen cabinets are painted a cream and the upper cabinets have beaded glass.

I added the curtains to the back. I am using these cabinets to hide oven and microwave. Plus another pantry. All the stuff I don't want to be seen.
My crazy fun fridge sits next to the red cabinet.  You can see all the gritty details on this site:

These are the rest of the cabinets in the kitchen area.
I added a antique looking beaded glass to my upper cabinets after I had painted the interiors dark chocolate. I also have electrical in each cabinet for lighting which is upcoming. I hope?
So that's the details of all my kitchen/living rooms cabinetry. But I may have left out a detail. The counters are a chocolate concrete. a totally different story.

Thanks for visiting.

Canning The Light

I loved canning with my mom. Good fresh picked farm food from our own gardens. I never saw a grocery bought vegetable till I got married. So I have a fondness for these beautiful old canning jars.

I used six different types of Ball canning jars and figured out how to make them into lights for my little cottage. I try to surround myself with things which remind me of my farm life. They make me smile.

Good thing I have a an amazing hubby whom will work with me tirelessly. Sorry I didn't take progress pictures showing how this was accomplished. there are many tutorials on the internet.

Thanks for visiting.

SK's Fridge to Vintage Steamer Trunk

With the amazing photo talent of Carole Marie my vintage steamer trunk comes to life.

Painted Lady French Doors

Painted Lady French Doors

I used these old french doors to experiment with light, dark and texture effects.. The color and painted effects make me smile.
The doors were left without any varithane or other protectant. With the moisture in Oregon I need to make sure these doors are waterproof. I took some time figuring out a fun and unusual color combination and texture.  An old plastic lace tablecloth came in handy. I have one that is multi-painted from various projects. It's fun just by itself. Painting clothes, tarps and such have a story to tell. Don't get rid of them. My girls have taken a pair of my thirty year old painting pants, cut them up, matted and framed the best parts as a memory of our colorful past...

SK's Tissue Paper & Copper Walls

I love small interesting spaces. So when I designed this 4'x5' guest bath I had some decisions to make. It had very tall ceilings and light pine floors so I could do just about anything I wanted color wise. But I also wanted an interesting texture on the walls.

This a fun but messy project.

SK Dislikes Stainless Steel

 See more of SK's Stuff On HomeTalk

I can't say much after that title, because the statement is horribly true. I Hate Stainless Steel. Hey the stuff looks great. Until...Kids get to it. Or hubby. Or Me. I must admit.

The stuff seems to glom onto fingerprints. We were constantly trying to find a way of keeping it shiny and free of greasy fingerprints. So here ya go...

SK's Little Worn Out Hutch

I needed to dig deep to save this poor little baby. Found in a farmers field, it had seen better days. The interior was covered with old wallpaper and glue. Stripping it was an adventure. I found old news clips and ads.

A Little French Bistro

This poor baby was left in the weather too long and was so upset it started to split. It needed to be completely sanded down to the wood. I then wood patched the rotted areas and sanded.
SK Sartell's Bistro Table