Antique Cabinet


First of all, I’d like to wish everyone a happy 2015. I’m spending New Year’s day alone with my two kitties up at the mountain house and enjoying the peace and quiet away from the firecrackers and revelers down in the city. My family loves the ruckus and fireworks so they stayed at our city house and partied. I guess I must be a party pooper at heart but I  figure I filled my quota of partying on Christmas. So here I am, relishing the silence while planning and plotting DIY projects to keep me busy during the next couple of months and trying to organize them in order of importance. Among the things I’m going to work on (as soon as I figure out what I want to do with it) is this gorgeous antique cabinet that we bought last week from our good friend Richie. A couple of years ago, Richie inherited his mother’s house along with everything in it. He promptly organized a garage sale and sold most of the stuff off. At that time, I bought several furniture items from him and I also spied two beautiful antique cabinets full of gorgeous vintage crystal. One of them was this particular cabinet, but to my dissapointment he wasn’t sure if he wanted to sell them or not.


Shortly afterwards he closed up the house and went back to the States. Fast forward two years. Richie came back a couple of weeks ago to spend Christmas in Costa Rica and he sold the house. That meant that he had to decide quickly if he should sell the remaining pieces of furniture that had been locked up for two years and he invited us to go take a look to see if we were interested in anything. Was he kidding?? I’d been coveting those cabinets since 2012. I was there the next morning at 9am. Sharp. The two cabinets were still there, standing in the same spot where I’d last seen them and I wanted them both. Unfortunately (for me) he decided at the last minute that he was going to keep one of them as it was over a hundred years old and it had belonged to his father and to his father’s grandmother before him.  But he WAS willing to part with the other cabinet which had beautiful beveled glass inserts as well as a beveled mirror and a set of skeleton keys that opened all the doors. It also happened to be jam packed with his mother’s crystal. I felt a fleeting pang of guilt for buying another woman’s cherished treasures, but I silently promised to take good care of them for her. Then came the mandatory haggling. He asked for $500 dollars for the cabinet including all the crystal inside of it, plus two antique ceiling lamps and a 7 foot artificial Christmas tree (which he evidently was anxious to unload on the first unsuspecting victim) Hubby counter-offered $200 dollars. I cringed with embarassment. Richie came back at $400. Hubby raised his offer to $300. They settled on $350. Whew!


The following day we packed up the crystal which ended up filling five large cardboard boxes and lugged the cabinet home. It’s so heavy that we needed five men to bring it up the narrow stairs. I’ve temporarily put it in the dining room until I decide what I’m going to do with it. I had originally planned on adding several ornate furniture appliques to it and painting it white. I might still do that. But I’m debating whether to cover up that lovely antique wood with flat white paint or not. Would that be sacrilegious? I’m usually not fond of shabby-chic, let alone distressed furniture, but maybe if I can call it “cottage style” and hold the distressing it will look nice in white. It already has a couple of pretty carvings. Or maybe I should just have the wood re-stained? I don’t know.


The finish looks pretty beat up in a few spots. I don’t know how difficult it would be to re-stain it. Maybe I’d have to strip the entire thing first, which sounds daunting.  I think it might also need new drawer pulls, these look sort of dented and kind of thin and flimsy on such a heavy cabinet. On the other hand, I’d really prefer to keep all the original hardware. Decisions.



Here’s a view of the heavy beveled glass inserts.



We also bought this vintage 1930s Art Deco vanity for $40 dollars.



It’s solid, very heavy wood and all the hinges and pulls are in perfect shape. I’m pretty sure I’m going to paint this one a pale gray. Or maybe a soft yellow. Maybe I’ll paint it white and then decoupage some roses over it……decisions. Gah.


Joining Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage

Joining Show and Tell Friday at My Romantic Home



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