Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Before and After: Changing Table

Shame on me.

Shame, shame, shame.

I tease you with photo- a peek at a project that I am so very excited to share with you. I offer you one tiny glimpse and promise you a follow-up post and full disclosure of my mystery piece-- and then I flake. I bail, I fail, I drop the ball. :( Seriously, though, things got a lot busier than I expected them to, so my promised blog post had to wait.

But the wait is now over. And hopefully it will be worth it. I'm super duper about this piece. It's one I've been mulling over for some time- waiting for inspiration to strike and to be able to give it the time it deserves, because I really wanted to do this one "right". It started as this lovely but tired changing table that I spied in a local thrift store.

It had tons of that antique character that I love, but the finish was drab, and the price tag was just too hefty for me. I walked away, but there it sat for some weeks so I could smile at it during my thrifty visits.


Later it got marked down 50%, and still it was a little bit pricey. But the fates smiled on me one day as I happened to be carrying a 50% off coupon which I could use to purchase this lovely piece at a very reasonable price.

I didn't work on it for quite a while, waiting to really know what I wanted to do with it. I tried to figure out a way that I could make it mine. I do, after all, have a new baby who needs changing OFTEN. But, I already have a very functional, perfectly fine changing table. Finally I realized that, as much as I wanted to, I couldn't keep it but I could make it Mine in the sense that I could give it my touch. So I mixed up some DIY chalk paint using the recipe Anne Marie shares on her blog Twice Lovely and using one of my favorite blues- "Prince Edward" by Glidden- as my base color.


Instead of continuing the same blue color inside the cabinet, I decided to do something a little unexpected and used the most PERFECT coral color- "Peony Pink" by Behr. (So, any guesses what my favorite flower is? Yep. The peony. Coincidence? I think not.)
Isn't it just GORGEOUS? Mmmmm. I want to paint everything this color from now on! It's my new favorite color for my wardrobe this spring, and I've even purchased some nail polish similar to this. Are you on board with the coral craze?

(Sadly, my beloved coral is looking a little more like persimmon in this photo below, thanks to my crappy garage lighting.)

Not hating on the persimmon color, though. Look how pretty it is on the wall in this bedroom.

via
Hmmm... kind of loving persimmon, actually. I might have to give that color a try soon...

Anyway, the sanding step is always super fun, and thanks to the chalk paint recipe it distressed like a dream, letting some of the white primer and wood show through.




Finally I decided to apply some brown glaze to darken the exposed wood and make those details stand out. Some clear glass knobs finished it off perfectly. Seriously bummed I already have a changing table!




But now, here's the best part. This piece had a little secret to share when I got it home and started to really inspect it. Look what I found on one of the back panels.




This inscription is in pencil and oh-so-carefully written. It reads:

Infants Changing Table
Converted from old dining room stand found in basement of Putnam House in December 1972

Conversion completed March 19, 1977
East Grand Rapids, Michigan
W. E. Chickering III

Made with love for my First born child,
with hope for his or her brothers and sisters,
with dreams for their Future and with loving thanks to their mother, my wife Lynette.

I mean, could that be any sweeter? I was thrilled to find that some of this piece's history was actually inscribed on it, along with the beautiful sentiments of the craftsman who converted it into something beautiful yet functional for his new family.

It's now at the shop, topped with a framed photo of the writing on the back panel (which of course I protected with some polyurethane) so people will know that this table has a secret preserved on the back.

6 comments:

Rachel Holloway said...

It's SOOOO awesome! And the writing is SUCH a beautiful touch!!!

Anonymous said...

You should try and find the person who wrote on the back. I'm sure their families would love to have it.

Anonymous said...

Oh I agree, you must try to find the family that created this piece. I did a quick google search and found a family of "Chickerings" in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Please try, and report back on your efforts. So interesting!

Randy Davis said...

Hi, Nice post thanks for sharing. Would you please consider adding a link to my website on your page. Please email me back.

Thanks!

Randy
randydavis387@gmail.com

Sarah said...

This is too cute! I live in East Grand Rapids, Michigan and the Putnam family lives here still! Small world. I wonder how that dresser got all the ways out to you in CA???

Melissa P said...

Just found your blog through pinterest. The story of the changing table gave me chills and by the way you are SO talented. Thank you for sharing all your photos to give us all great ideas to see the potential in some pre-loved items that are just waiting out there for us!
Thank you, Melissa P