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Friday, August 18, 2017

Pulling out the Stash !!

While waiting to get a renovation job done that’s been on the list for too many years, I’m pulling things out of my stash that have been waiting patiently to be used for this project.

A few years ago a neighbour gave me an old cedar chest that was headed for the dump. Far be it for me, to let that happen. It was in pretty good shape, especially the inside, and just a few minor bumps here and there on the outside. The finish was quite worn but that’s not a problem if it was going to be re-purposed anyway. I didn’t want to sand and stain it as the new sunroom will be bright and the dark wood would be out of place, so it’s been painted instead.  I took pictures of the original markings, most of them are retained as they are inside, but a couple are now painted over.




On the underside the balsa wood base was for the most part, missing. Broken off over time. I broke a bit more of it back to where it wasn’t lifting and got started with painting. The first pictures, show the base unfinished, along with a foreman to watch over the progress (aka… the neighbours cat, Max) and then a basecoat of some left over interior water base paint.

Oh my goodness. You would have laughed in a “I’m so sorry kind of way”, if you had seen what I did to one of Mother Natures creatures. It was pathetic really, I felt so bad. Before I got the paint out, I took a soft brush and cleaned the chest all over to eliminate all the dust and spider webs that were living there. I did that really well, I thought. You know where I’m going with this don’t you?

I got the paint and started adding to the corners with a pretty good dose of paint because of all the little nooks and crannies that I had to cover. Oh dear, on reloading my brush, I looked down and out from the corner staggered a little spider, a mint green spider at that. He looked like he’d been at a party all night and was just coming home.I did my “I’m so sorry buddy” laugh, let him crawl up onto the brush and gently tossed him outside with a wish for a better life. I’m quite sure he didn’t survive, and there was nothing I could do for him. Poor guy.

So, back to the chest. The wooden knob in the center has to do with the Aroma adjustment for the inside. Can’t find info online even from the original maker, but will play around with it and see what happens. These chests are not really an antique, I did find out that much. Apparently new chest are somewhere in the range of $400 US, but I really like the look of well loved pieces. They just need a refresh and as long as you aren’t destroying a vintage valuable piece, it’s all good.


I applied two coats of the main colour for better coverage, also the paint will soak into the wood and strengthen the grain. There are some minor spots that needed a bit more coverage. You can see it’s in pretty good shape, a bit scraped up on the outside, but all in all, really good solid piece of furniture. I removed the locking mechanism so it could be opened easily. There is that button on the front that had to be pushed in to release the catch, but it was pretty hard to do and probably more stiff than it was originally. I’ve added handles that you’ll see at the end, much easier.


The main paint I used is called “Fusion”. Click here for more info. It’s an all in one paint, so you don’t need to varnish when finished. You can if you want to of course. I bought the paint at this local store, they have the best vintage pieces for sale, accessories, and they do classes in how to repurpose furniture and make it new again, as well as other classes. Click here for more info. I love going there, it seems every week there are new and wonderful finds, and I could easily leave there with lots of goodies each time if I didn’t restrain myself.

Once it was painted, it just seem to burst into new life. It’s so bright and cheerful and will be such a focal point in the rebuilt sunroom. The colour is slightly softer than what the picture shows, and has a slight grey tone to it. Same said neighbour came over and blessed me with a couple of tablecloths. ;o) One is lace, so that might be what lays on top of the chest later on.



At the same store where I bought the paint, I also got these handles and this really fun paper to line the bottom of the chest. I wish there had been more, but I got the last sheet. The actual colour is like brown packing paper, but it didn’t want to photograph that way for me. ;o( 

For whatever reason, I’ve picked out accessories I’ll show another time, that have a Paris – Shabby Chic theme to them.


The final part was to pull out some yarn from my stash that eventually would have become a sweater, in which life time I’m not sure. I bought a jumbo ball of the variegated yarn just to add some brightness to the green and blue, and crocheted a cozy afghan. It’s wool which will be nice and warm for early morning coffee or just nighttime chats while star gazing. Sounds like a good relaxing thing to do.

I have some other projects to work on, so more posts will follow. I also finished all the fairies (50 of them) and am now working on the display piece for the show/sale that starts September 30th. Pictures to come for that also, so stay tuned.



  1. Excellent re-purposing of something that was about to be tossed out. Look at all that storage space. Always a bonus:)

  2. What a gem Romona! I remember my Grandmother having a chest like this. Nice repurposing. Looking forward to pics of the new sun room!

  3. You took on a wonderful project and what a great job you have done



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