12 December 2012

DIY to-do: antique china cabinet

I try to avoid talking about work a lot here on the blog, dear readers. That’s partly for your sake, but mostly because of my fear of a google monster that could somehow cast me in a negative light to current and potential employers. It’s a reasonable fear, I think.

Nonetheless, I’m going to take a moment to confess: Since September, I’ve been working with several other research groups on a project that keeps me at the lab bench each Saturday and Sunday, for six to seven hours both days, in addition to the usual workweek hours. Because of the nature of the project, the weekend work is all laborious hands-on time, and I don’t have the option of doing that work on other days. It must be done specifically on Saturdays and Sundays, leaving only just enough time for the typical weekend activities of errands and laundry (and sometimes laundry gets the shaft). It’s... well, it’s not been my idea of a fun time.

However. I am telling you all this because this weekend? Is the last weekend of that project.


Thank goodness! I know I’ll be in the lab for some amount of time on future weekends, but it will be on my own schedule. And every so often, that amount of time will be zero. The freedom! The luxury! The positive mental health effects!

Whew! Let’s celebrate the end of this tedious weekend-less era, dear readers, with some potential projects!

There’s the things I’ve already told you I want to do, like painting the scuffed-up surface of this caster table:

Trimming out the living room shelves to make them look more built-in:

And doing something with the desk in the guest room, even if it’s just “decide I don’t mind chipped veneer all that much”:

Considering how long those projects have been on my to-do list, they should keep me busy for awhile, right?

And yet, over Thanksgiving, I managed to procure yet another project. Say hello to my grandparents’ china cabinet:

For years it lived in my childhood home, with my mother dropping hints that I would need to inherit it someday. When I hit adulthood, though, I said no to the china cabinet and moved away. No room! Not my style! Thanks but no thanks!

It’s true, I tend to favor clean lines and right angles in modern-toned furniture. This guy is all curvy antique orangey-oak. So why did I let my cousins bring it to my home, and why did Mr. P and I haul it up to our third-floor apartment?

Because it has potential, it was free, it fit perfectly on that wall, and storage, duh. You can put a lot more than china in here!

(Not counting those random items I mindlessly set in there. Ignore, please!)

That’s not to say that it doesn’t need a little work. For one, it needs some shims to replace that cardboard I shoved under the front feet. The century-old floor slopes there, so without something to help prop it up, the whole cabinet leans forward and lets the magnet-closure door randomly open up. Yay historic apartment?

(Something else to ignore: the Christmas decoration storage boxes in the background. I told you, I HAVE BEEN BUSY.)

Also crucial is a nice paint job; I confirmed with my mom that she didn’t mind if I painted it. Apparently, I’m following the tradition of multiple relatives, each of whom put their own touch on it before it was professionally refinished back to the orangey-oak. I’ve toyed with the idea of trying to Polyshades it a darker shade, but this recent post from Layla about her painted secretary has me considering yet another gray piece of furniture:

Or white, like Katie Bower’s china cabinet? I do love white. It’s also neutral, you know.

That way, I can get my color kicks in by painting the interior a fun shade or pattern. Ehhh?

Once again, I’m telling you about my project to-do list without actually doing any of them. Sorry about that. But very soon I’ll have a bit more time to tackle them! Holy moly, I’m so excited.


Christal said...

Hooray for getting your life back!!!!

Tina said...

I agree with Christal... for at least on the weekends, that is...