Repurposing a Machinist’s Cabinet

Sometimes the easiest path to creative repurposing is to simply clean things up and use them. One day this machinist’s cabinet showed up at Second Use and I brought it home for a little TLC.

Green design,  Re-purposed,  Second Use,  Salvage,  Repurposed furniture,  Repurposed storage,

I don’t like matching furniture, what can I say? I also don’t like smelly furniture, which is what this was when we found it at Second Use and Mary Jean got so excited about it –

Green design,  Re-purposed,  Second Use,  Salvage,  Repurposed furniture,  Repurposed storage

Mary Jean, excited about stinky machinist cupboard.

But – there’s something about little drawers, little pulls and built in shelves that I do like. And square shapes plus imperfection. And I had a coupon. So, there you go – I bought it.

Green design,  Re-purposed,  Second Use,  Salvage,  Repurposed furniture,  Repurposed storage

I scrubbed for two days, but despite my best efforts I couldn’t remove all the previous owners labeling (you were thorough sir!) – so I left some – until the day when I don’t like them anymore and will probably have to sand them away, but for now let’s call them patina.

I removed the middle door so we could appreciate the shelves that don’t line up and the little drawers.

Green design,  Re-purposed,  Second Use,  Salvage,  Repurposed furniture,  Repurposed storage,

And that was that! Added a few bright red accents (see Plumbop) and driftwood colored knobs – stuffed the hidden shelves and drawers and now I feel so organized :)

Green design,  Re-purposed,  Second Use,  Salvage,  Repurposed furniture,  Repurposed storage,

Green design,  Re-purposed,  Second Use,  Salvage,  Repurposed furniture,  Repurposed storage,

See? Clean, organized, and doesn’t match a thing!

~Monica

 

 

 

Salvaged Metal Cupboard

When I brought this old metal cupboard home from RE-Store, this is the reaction I got from my friends and family:

13 year old daughter: “You paid money for that?”

Monica: “I’m not seeing it.”

Husband: “Where are you going to put that?”

A little offended and put-out, I went to work cleaning it up. (After first letting it sit in the garage for about 3 months.) The steps: Continue reading

Upgrade a Table Top

This project originally appeared as a guest post on Pretty Handy Girl a couple weeks ago. (So if you have a vague feeling you’ve seen this before, you just may have.)

Update Table Top with Steel and Mod Podge®

 

I had an old Ikea table top (that was basically like a hollow core door) that we used for a work surface in our office. It sat on top of an old table I found at a garage sale. It was all looking pretty shabby, and there was nothing chic about it.

 

Old table top and table base (+kitty), before.

First I painted the table base a dark charcoal gray, then together with my girlfriends, Mary Jean and Monica, we grabbed my grandmother’s old dictionary, a jar of Mod Podge®, flat bar steel, galvanized bolts and washers, and went to work on the table top. Continue reading

Funky Fix for Salvaged Bookcase

We got an old salvaged bookshelf from ReStore a couple years ago. It was missing (or never had) a finished end panel. Thinking that it would either a.) be a really long time before we would make a nice paneled trim piece for it, or b.) it didn’t deserve a nice paneled trim piece, I decided to clad it in an old sign (picked up for $1 at ReStore).

What we did:

I wanted to mock up the design so we measured the panel and made a cropping template with paper. Positioned the paper template on top of the sign to get an idea of best cropping.

Marked and cut the sign with a circular saw, with straight edge, clamped to a table. I don’t have a picture of this, but it is the same idea as what we did in a previous project.

Sanded the edges with fine sandpaper to finish off the edges.

Pre-drilled the nail holes in the plywood sign, because it was thin and we were nailing so close to the edge. Nailed it into place. Could have used screws, but liked the look of the nails better.

All done, good enough for now – maybe someday I’ll get around to putting something more refined on there, but then again, probably not!

See more of Heidi’s artwork at Old Stuff. New Stories.

Do It Yourself Kitchen Island

Our kitchen is pretty small, lacking counter/storage space. I looked around for a portable “island” “peninsula” or even an “archipelago”, but couldn’t find one affordable/unique. So of course I went to Hardwick’s, our local funky hardware store swap shop. It is an amazing place, filled with anything you might need – old & new tools, hardware, kitchen ware, plumbing supplies and old furniture. You (I) could spend hours there. I found an old stand from a drill press. It was perfect – small footprint, storage (drawers and doors), and best of all, it was hand-made by some old guy once upon a time, complete with his measurement/pencil markings on the inside. It was mine mine mine for $20.

I took it home and everyone said, “what?”. I was a little discouraged. But I cleaned it up, and went searching for a more substantial top.  At my other favorite store, Second Use Building Materials, I found an amazing, thick limestone countertop remnant that just fit. Lucky lucky lucky. I think it was about $20 or so. It was very very heavy. I’ve never attached it to the base, but probably should with “Liquid Nails.”

I wanted casters on this thing, because if I could, I would put casters on everything I own.  I was looking for big chunky ones. It is hard to find a matching set of 4 at a salvage yard, so I got them at Home Depot. They were silver metal with rubber wheels, I painted them gray with metal paint. I installed the casters, painted the cabinet a dark charcoal grey and took some sandpaper to it (another thing I like to do to everything I own).

One thing I’ve always obsessed about is organized spice containers. The little drawers are a perfect size for little tins. I made some labels and stuck them on. Now I am very organized, or at least my spices are.

I am very happy with the additional counter space/storage my little island/peninsula provides (although “some people” in my family think it gets in the way, but I don’t listen to him).

See more of Heidi’s artwork at Old Stuff. New Stories.