Shortly after john.e and I started living together back in the fall of 2013, he brought me back to a store he had introduced me to a few months prior. The store is called Elegant Garage Sale. I wasn’t a big fan of the store at first, but I’ve grown to love it. You might have read in a previous post that when we moved in together, we both came with very little in terms of furniture and “stuff,” so we needed to buy so many things which were needed for every day living. This chest, however, was not one of them.
John.e fell in love with this chest the moment he laid eyes on it. It’s an antique chest made from cedar and even came with a certificate of authenticity. Well, I hated it! Now, I’m not one to hide my true feelings about anything, so I made it abundantly clear that I didn’t like it. However, I knew that living together meant compromise, so we brought it home. (I still hated it, even though it was the first item we purchased together as a couple.)
At first, it was placed in our bedroom. The plan was to use it for blankets and such. That lasted for a few months until we bought new bedroom furniture and needed the extra space. The chest then moved out into the dining room area where we turned it into a sitting bench with decorative pillows. After a year or so of my complaining, john.e allowed me to paint it. After all, I was tired of the chest being a home to his lego collection. And, please, don’t get me started on that!
As with other furniture pieces we refinished, I started by sanding off the shiny coat of finish which has been applied over the stain many years ago. It wasn’t important for all of the finish to be removed; as long as I had created a rough surface over the entire chest, I knew the paint would hold once it was applied. Two coats of paint later, we patiently waited for it to completely dry. The next day, using a different grades of sandpaper to create different levels of depth to the surface, I removed the paint to make the chest look weathered. It was important to focus heavily on the corners which would have had lots of wear and tear anyway. I also concentrated on the area around the locking and latching mechanism which kept the lid closed. Also, I thought that the legs should have a higher dose of sanding applied because no doubt someone had banged it once or twice with a vacuum cleaner. (See how my mind works?)
Once the sanding was complete, we cleaned away all of the dust and stood back to admire our work. That’s when we had the idea to use the chest as a coffee table. It had the right height and was very study. But, it needed a little something; a little touch to make it more country, more “homemade,” and more our style. I applied a stencil we both liked and lightly dabbed the paint over the stencil using a foam-brush. Lastly, the entire chest was coated with a Krylon protective seal to maintain and preserve the work we had put into it.
And, there you have it! Of the two levels in this chest, the blankets have moved on, but the top level still holds his legos. The bottom part, however, is a safe place to keep my many skeins of yarn. 😉