At the end of June I retired from my long time teaching job. My wonderful colleagues gifted me the old card catalogue from our school library…Best retirement gift ever!!!! They filled the drawers with all manner of curiosities for me. The card catalogue was a little worse for wear so I decided to give it a make over. It is now finished and is a wonderful reminder of my years at Duncan Elementary School and my crazy colleagues.
Best retirement gift ever!
Needs some TLC
Removed the handles and after soaking them in vinegar and sprinkling them with salt, I popped them in a hot oven for 20 minutes…Presto beautiful patina.
Then I took apart the cabinet and sanded off the varnish using a palm sander…60 grit so it is rough enough to take the stain. (Had to do it twice, lesson learned) Also needed to brush on a coat of water to raise the grain so it would accept the stain.
Stained the maple cabinet and all 30 drawers with Cherry stain and then 3 coats of polyurethane with a light fine sanding between coats…Lesson learned…first two coats should be gloss and last coat matte or satin.
Printed off labels on 200 year old paper.
Filled the drawers with all manner of curious art supplies…
And voila the big reveal…my beautiful gift from my treasured friends and colleagues.
The studio is coming together. Next piece a paper filing cabinet from an upcycled dresser. We found a very inexpensive tall narrow dresser at the General Salvage store. It had 8 drawers. Perfect! This is not the actual cabinet…I forgot to take a before pic but it was very similar to this.
Two coats of charcoal FAT paint, some light distressing and three coats of wax and it looks much better. We also added some nice trim.
Creartfuldodger will be not be cre-arting for awhile…
Instead I will be working on my new studio, in an artful way of course.
Whoot! Whoot! It’s a real studio, not just a corner of a busy shared space!
Phase one : Repurpose a salvaged tool drawer unit that was destined for the skip.
Here it is in it’s before state: or almost we added some wood to hold it together.
Note the ugly brown paint and green labels…it was dirty! I decided to try my hand at chalk
paint for the first time.
Added two shelves and a new top with some trim. Sanded and cleaned each drawer. Two coats of Emerald Green Fat paint and wax purchased from Cameo Boutique and Union 22 in Cobble Hill. Reaffixed the old copper hardware. Lined the drawers with old Atlas pages. And it was ready to hold some creartful junk. Feeling smug! Merci Michel mon cheri pour ton aide et ton soutien!
My last trip to Paris and London was over a year ago now…sigh. Nottinghill , Spitalfields, Bricklane, St. Ouen, Vanves...double sigh.
Ah the treasures we find at the flea market! Somethings made it home, some did not.
Ma boutique préférée à St. Ouen : Tombées du Camion...le paradis!
Can one have too many antique bird cages? I think not.
Some things made it home: old love letters from 1901, legal documents on parchment from the 1800s, old keys, escutcheons, doll eye balls, old house numbers, a wooden spool and a printers tray and some wooden letters.
Some things did not make it home: a old prosthetic leg attached to rather large underpants.
and a valise chockablock full of taxidermy ducklings.
They really wanted to come to Canada but hélàs no room!
The flotsam and jetsam of everyday life from the past are nestled in antique printer’s trays ( brought home gleefully from London’s Portobello Road Market ) . Artfully displayed supplies inspire creativity: optical lenses, transistors, frozen charlottes, keys, stamps, eyeballs, teeth, legs, buttons, typewriter keys, tiny house numbers, gears, watch faces, dominoes, teeny tiny light bulbs, a rat’s skull …endless possibilities.
Artful storage for the art studio. New cedar crates transformed with biodegradable weathering compound and pastels and vintage labels. Thank you to Michel for the crates and the Graphic Fairy for the labels. The transfer technique is so easy and involves printing in reverse on parchment paper. Now all my vintage supplies will have a lovely home.