Our house is compact but because of it’s bungalow style, little room is wasted. I don’t know what the original kitchen was like and I would love to know. The kitchen we have I’m guessing is from somewhere in the 1950-1960s. It’s got some interesting cabinets made of solid wood, not solid plywood, solid wood. Like actual boards an inch thick. The problem is they are all very shallow (our dinner plates only fit in one cabinet) and they are laid out poorly. One day this room will get some changes but not today.
Our kitchen set up can cause some problems with storage. I don’t shop at warehouse places because I really have no where to put anything. This also causes a problem when you have a bumper crop of almost 50 heads of garlic. Where exactly do you store that with enough airflow that they won’t rot?
This was the question I posed to TB when I saw a cabinet on Craigslist. We are pretty full of stuff in every room, from furniture to fabric to baby stuff and when I showed him the picture I got the look that says “And where are we going to put that?” Once I explained it would give up a place to put the garlic, shallots and potatoes, I had him. He even went and picked it up!
Here it is when it first came home.
It had a really yucky poly over a dark reddish stain. The hinges were brass and the handles were white and chrome. And none of those things matched my house. Obviously something had to be done. But on the bright side, the piece was solid wood with real beadboard tongue and groove planks for the back.
I thought about stripping it and refinishing but with my available hours lately that was never going to happen. My own stuff always gets pushed to the side. I started by sanding it to see how far I could get since all the surfaces are flat. I got it down to mostly bare wood all around but after discussing with TB I decided to do two things I rarely do: I painted it white and used spray paint on the hardware.
First, I rarely paint things white because, well, it’s not fun and it doesn’t sell. It sells like hotcakes for others but for me, no. I used Safecoat Paints which are made for people with chemical sensitivities because it was in my house with the baby. I used a paint sprayer thinking it would make it easier to get inside all the compartments but I’m not sure it made it easier. The finish is nice without the brush strokes though and it did a nice job on the chicken wire. I used two coats of primer (to help with the old stain and knots bleeding) and then two coats of white.
For the hardware, I wanted to reuse the hinges because trying to match new ones would have been a chore. Plus it would cost some money since I needed 6 hinges. The two knobs are from my stash and came off another piece at some point. I already had some spray paint in a metallic oil rubbed bronze finish from something I had to match and couldn’t replace in the living room so I used that. It is not eco-friendly at all. Like at all. I used about 3 spritzes and left it outside to let it off gas / de-smell itself for a few days which made a big difference.
So here is the after.
Once I installed the hardware I planned to touch up the screw heads to match. But I kind of liked how the brass screws looked.
I think it adds a little geometric detail on this cabinet that is pretty plain otherwise.
The two lower compartments will hold onions, garlic, shallots and potatoes which love a it dark but with some airflow. Right now I jambed them in there but it doesn’t look pretty (which is why I don’t have any pictures). I really would like some wire baskets to fit right in but I feel that will be quite the search. The top compartment has all of Lincoln’s bottles and formula. There isn’t much air flow in that compartment so I avoided food and figured it was best to get the bottles off the counter and put away somewhere neatly.
It fits perfectly (within a half of an inch) in this little niche so I would say it was a good buy. So nice to have a bit of clutter gone.
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