Saturday, May 14, 2011

Suburban Picker

One of the big reasons we bought our house in the first place was because the basement was already finished. It had a kickin' bar, a full bath (so I don't have to share), and a closed off utility room. We had just been through two major renovations, and we couldn't face another one.

This basement is not without its challenges, mostly because of my own mistakes; exhibit A is the red couch fail. That has now been resolved with a lovely leather sectional, but this corner:

...was still there. The dumping ground of old office furniture, curb alert items, a treadmill, a nightstand that was replaced but still in good condition, and stuff that the hubs wants to keep.

This sat for a few weeks, mocking me every time I sat down. It was time to do something about it and the plan was to use my Suburban Pickings. I had my own version of American Pickers with my Curb Alert post where my picks were a weathered and chippy table, a lamp table, and these two little drawer units.

The drawer units were your basic put-it-together-yourself variety, and who doesn't need more storage? They sat in my garage for a few weeks:

I had a nightstand of the same color wood and thought they might work together somehow.

The first thing necessary to start working on the basement corner was to get everything out. The bookcase was left over from my husband's Gator office (that still painting yet).
Everything got shifted to the bar. If it takes over the bar, this project will get done sooner in order to clear off the drinking area :)

Here's an idea of what the drawers and nightstand are going to become:

Yes, they aren't the same heights. Yes, I could take off the casters to make them closer to the same height. Will I? No - because I have an idea (ruh roh).

The color of the wood is obviously going to get changed...white? black? distressed? glazed? How about this:

Ahhhh...oil rubbed bronze metallic spray paint. This stuff even makes cheap wood furniture look good.

The little drawers were going to get cute labels, but in the end, the paint/stencil combo on the spray paint was soooooo not working out. Simple numbered drawers it is then. Even those came out a little wonky, but if you don't look too hard at them, it's not so bad:

check out that green, green grass!
See? If you squint, you can't even see how badly the stenciling went :) I might outline them with a paint pen, but then again, I might not. It depends on how motivated I am and how badly my design distraction kicks in...there are a few other projects waiting for me that would be way more fun than perfecting these numbers!

My big idea was basically to put a top over the whole shebang and leave the little cubby; maybe put a basket in it; maybe just let it be an open space.

I had a hallelujah moment when this was spotted at the back of the garage:

This was from a headboard I built quickly for a condo I staged and we had been lugging it around through 3 moves. It was a little spider-webby on the back:

This was a seriously long piece of plywood, prestained and poly'ed and ready to go...once it was cut to size. Good thing I bought my husband that table saw years ago!

Isn't this a pretty piece of plywood? I spent a little more for hardwood plywood, and it makes a difference when staining. I stained the two cut edges and it looked good enough to not need the finish edging.

I put the two drawer units on the underside of the top and thought it would be a good thing to screw them down so the table top didn't slide.

I actually measured and remeasured to make sure the overhangs were the same on all sides - not my strongpoint, but it needed to be done, so I sucked it up and did it :)

Laziness ruled the day and only one screw was put in - seems to work:

This is now a storage/sofa table that makes it easy to put a plate down (we generally eat on the couch - nothing formal here):

Here it is with the laptop in the cubby and books on the shelf:
I even changed out the knob from the wooden one to a cool iron one. Spray paint brought the whole look together nicely!

I wanted to get this done by our 12th anniversary, but that was a little ambitious. I surprised my husband with it today and he loved it, of course. He's so supportive of my crazy creative chaos!

Linking up with:

Sisters of the Wild West
Under the Table and Dreaming
Tatertots and Jello
Junker Newbie
Miss Mustard Seed
Funky Junk Interiors SNS
Type A Anything Goes Party


  1. Finally, after a hectic week, getting a chance to actually check out some of my favorite blogs. I love what you did here - it's so genius! I never would have thought to put all those together. Love all your ideas!

  2. Wow what lucky treasures you found cant believe he lets you work with the bike in the garage I was spray painting outside and the bike was like 10 ft or more away and he had a cow!!! LOL

  3. Looks great Jill! I like the numbers on the drawers. And you can always move out the little table and pull up a chair if you needed a desk.

  4. I'm totally in awe of your abilities! And your creativity. I love the numbers, too! You are so talented, I'm so jealous! haha.

  5. I like this so much I hope you won't mind that I pinned it on my pinterest!

  6. I love this! I'd like to invite you to post it on Masterpiece Monday at Boogieboard Cottage. The link will be up all week, I hope you can join in. Have a nice week, Mary :O)

  7. Wow, what great curbside finds and a even better makeover.

  8. Don't you just love curbside finds!! Great transformation!

  9. Impressive! I love how you made them all look like one piece of furniture.

  10. Wow! What a great upcycle! Great finds!


  11. Great work, Jill. Very cool. Love the numbers.....oh, my OCD is on overdrive imagining the organizing possibilities! -Melissa

  12. Cool and clever! Nice save..the landfills thank you.

  13. Super cute and I love how you combined things from different places! :) New follower btw...

  14. Jill - this set up is genius! The file cabinets are such a fantastic find - love those. Very clever and creative. Thanks so much for linking to The Sunday Showcase Party - I greatly appreciate it. I have featured this Sunday. Have a wonderful week.
    ~ Stephanie Lynn

  15. Hi, Jill! I'm admiring all your creative posts here so can you please share them with us at the Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop? Hope to see you there at the party :)

  16. You are really smart! From Bs. As - Arg. Julia C.

  17. Those look great. At IKEA on Monday I was considering buying one of those carts for my daughter, and I thought the same thing.... how can I jazz them up... stencil numbers? I didn't buy one, but I won't hesitate next time since I know they will come out cute after you did yours.



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