We have been very busy since Thanksgiving. The end of November we went to buy a small amount of sod to replace an area that died due to drought. We passed this poor old primitive cupboard and fell in love.
We did not get it that day because it was so banged up, broken, it had holes and the inside had fake grass where it had been used as a display at the nursery.. But there was something that just kept pulling us to rescue it.
After much thinking about it the decision was made we would go get it and bring it home to restore it. (This was just before Katherine's herniated cervical disc).
This was the back and after much inspection we found the entire cupboard was made out of solid oak. :)
This is when we start thinking maybe this project is a bit too big but my husband had a plan. He is very good restoring furniture so I knew if anyone could help this poor cupboard he could do it.
The decision was to divide it into two parts so the top can lift off if so we could move it to get it into the house when it is finished. It was extremely heavy and just the two of us on this project was quite a lot. As we get older we keep saying we better do this now because before long we won't be able to do something like this. Then we say again, we better do this now because before long we won't be able to do something like this..... :)
I was just amazed at how the drawers and the drawer tracks were built.
So it was now unattached. There were some issues such as the old hardware. It had very little hardware but hardware that was on it had old flat head screws that were stubborn.
Many days of sanding and my husbands determination he managed to get all those years of white wash and paint off of the cupboard. We made the decision to paint it because our table was pine and this was oak and the whitewash was deep into the wood.
You must know that everything we did hurts at this point ........ and still does....
My husband walks into the room as I was painting the lower shelf and starts with a chuckle. "Now, how are you going to get up from there?" As I am laying on the floor trying my best to paint the underneath of the shelves. You have to be our age to really understand how difficult that is...
We replaced the back with wainscot. After sanding the entire cabinet it only smelled of oak so this was a very good thing. Now it smells like clean paint.
We could not afford to buy oak boards for the top shelves because they are extremely expensive so we purchased a high grade of pine since they would be painted anyway.
I decided to leave one board at the top front and then inside of the glass doors to show the age and and the layers of whitewash and paint.
After we put the top on, the jewel was 7 feet tall. We put a earthquake strap at the top and attached it to a stud in the wall because I am the safety person that I am. My nickname is OSHA, my husband likes to call me that.
I was getting close finishing the painting and managed to get our table cleared off and the room put back together. Oh I almost forgot what started this whole thing. We decided to flip flop our living room and dining room. We wanted a larger dining room and we only need a small den area to sit so we did this and we just love it this way. We always eat our meals at the table so this just feels right to us.
Did some extra sanding etc to get the doors to shut....
So finally it was finished. It is so much larger that this picture shows. We decided to name it Walton because it seems as big as a mountain.
The depth of the top part of the cupboard is interesting. It only holds the older dishes because in the past dishes were much smaller. We have older dishes that fit so this was a good thing.
We love our new dining room, the table seems so small now :)
We decided to use an old dresser as a buffet so this way we can keep tablecloths, napkins, placemats and such in the dining room. There is a fireplace in this room and living in the south we do not use it that often but this is very nice on a cold evening with a nice meal.
Just because we are getting older does not mean we have to stop being creative and get stale. I think that happens many times but it does not have to be this way.
Walton has a purpose again and is being used for what it was intended to do. This was not a manufactured cupboard, it was built by someone a very long time ago and we wish we knew its history but we can take it from here....