Archive | April, 2012

the story of the sideboard, part 1

26 Apr

So you remember the Magical Sideboard of Hope, yes?

After a two-week glory lap, it was banished from the living room for its missing hardware …

… paint drips …

… and assorted chips and scratches.

Oh, and there was that weird gold-tone hardware.  Here it is on the nightstand:

Yeah, not into it.  I’d say that The Boy was also “not into it” but that would be like saying he tolerates cottage cheese.

Well, NO MORE!

I’d been considering a number of things for replacement legs.  Hairpins? Wood tapers? None of it got me excited.  Too prissy.  Not aggressive enough to stand up to our black leather sofa amd The Boy’s ball chair.

Then it hit me while browsing Apartment Therapy: I should put it on casters.  Not just any casters but huge, crusty industrial casters that would give it both height and attitude.  I would pull out some of the drawers, install shelves to fit our AV equipment, cut holes to route our cords and have the snazziest entertainment center in Jersey City.

It turns out I am the last person to have this idea.  Not only have midcentury modern and industrial been done, they’ve been done so thoroughly that salvaged casters are unaffordable on eBay and folks are charging $250 on Etsy for the custom-aged “vintage style” casters they make for their industrial chic pieces.  So, I bought new casters and Googled rust paint.  What?!  I like what I like.  Sometimes it is is wonderful living with a man to whom I had to explain the word “meme”.

While I’m waiting for my casters, I started refinishing a vintage end table.  Stay tuned!  It’s been pretty intense.


dress forms and mannequins

24 Apr

This is not terribly self-help-y, but … look at what I found for my sewing room!

Yes, I have a sewing room.  That was my reward for moving to Jersey.  If you’re jealous, I know you’re not from New York because my NYC friends  — even the ones who sew — still don’t think it’s worth it.

I was on 40th St when I discovered two things: Paron was not where I left it, and there was a moving sale next door.  Several mannequins were on the street.  Some were holding up signs like “LAST DAY”, “GOING OUT OF BUSINESS” and “EVERYTHING MUST GO”.  These are common sights in the Garment District and I would usually ignore them, but for the enormous moving truck.

I’ve never “just been walking down the street” and happened upon something valuable. That happens to other people.  People who are not me.  But here I was, with my Zipcard miraculously in my wallet and enough charge on my phone (barely — that much is typical) to make an overnight reservation.

Before I knew it I was cruising home, my back seat awash in plastic people parts.

It is almost exactly my size.

I like the shop wear on the stand, but as you see here, the cover had to be washed.  When I pretreated it, the water turned brown!

Underneath the cover was this crazy extruded foam.

The stand was wobbly, so I turned it over and discovered three wing nuts.  I tightened them.  It wobbled less.  My favorite kind of repair.

I also bought two stand mannequins.  What will I do with two mannequins?  I don’t know, but right now, they are keeping my heart exercised since every time I use the downstairs bathroom in the dark I jump a goddamn mile.