Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Gift From Sadness

OK not to be a Debbie Downer,
but a good friend of mine passed away back in January.
She was one of those friends that I had forever!
Forever and ever, we go waaay back!!

It didn't matter if we hadn't seen each other for months, 
when we got together it was like only a day had passed.

It was sudden, unexpected and really painful.

She has two great kids, and her son was cleaning 
out their house and called me.

He said he found some stuff I may want.

He said he knew how much I liked broken, old stuff.......

Broken old stuff, I said, why do you say that??

He said, look at your house, stuff is all chipped up, 
stuff needs to be painted,
it's all broken and old........

I informed him it is called shabby chic......
and my house was very cute and homey.

He said, 
there's actually a name for that.......

I informed him he was not welcome for dinner on Sunday......
That little turd!!!   

Here is one of the old, broken pieces he thought I would like.........

Like........more like LOVE!!

It does need some attention.......

So this is where you out there in blog land come in......


I've never tackled something with this much damage.....

I need to remove the whole top layer.....
any suggestions?

And back to my friend's son,
we got him moved into an apartment and I told him I would
love to help him decorate.......
and he told me, 
that was really OK,
he didn't like used stuff......

Antiques are not USED stuff........
oh wait.........


  1. I'm sorry to hear about your loss... what a great piece to have as a memory!

  2. I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm sure you'll treasure that sewing machine and all of the memories of your dear friend.

    That cracks me up about her son!!

    Take care,

  3. I'm sorry to hear of your friend passing away. That's so rough! It looks as though you gained a few good things to remember her by.

    You have such a gift with words, Jane. That is truly funny about what her son said.

    Someone gave me an old beat up chair, last week. They said they instantly thought of me. Old and beat up... a compliment? I don't know, LOL!

    Can't wait to see what you do with the old sewing table. I know you can buy wood veneer by the roll. I'd chip away all the old and try that method. Google :0

  4. So sorry for the loss of your dear friend Jane. Her son's comments really crack me up! Good luck transforming the table!

  5. I can't offer any assistance with how to deal with your 'broken' piece! I am so glad your dear friend's son thought of you while cleaning out his Mum's home. You will always treasure this special item.

  6. I also love broken old stuff! lol. Shiny bright new things are quite disruptive in that they irritate me psyche. #weird lol

    As for your beautiful piece all you need to do is just pull of the old pieces that are coming loose.. You won't damage anything any more than what is there.

    As for the cracks underneath the chippy wood... You have a couple of options here.
    1. you can fill them with wood filler and sand for a smooth surface. This option will take a day or two because the filler will probably need to be applied twice and sanded each time to get the surface completely flat before applying a finishing product.
    2. leave the cracks as they are and paint over them. They add dimension and character.

    I'd pick option 2 if it were me.

    Hope this helps.


  7. My machine cabinet was in the same condition if not worse than yours and I simply painted over it using a primer first then a coat of favorite white then a little stain and then a sealant.

  8. So sorry about your good friend. I wish I could help with the sewing machine repair. I'm curious how you'll finally re-do it!!!

  9. Hi Jane! So sorry to hear of the loss of your friend. I have an old sewing machine a lot like that that I got from my Grandma when she passed. It still works! I don't use it though because it's hard. I keep it folded in the table and put my new machine on top of it.

  10. Remember to be gentle with yourself because grief takes its own time. Your new sewing machine and cabinet will bring you so much pleasure once you fix it up. Love the comment from the son. He sounds like my own boys:o)


  11. Does the machine work? What a nice piece! I'm sure you will be able to cherish it for a long time. You need to sand and fill in the holes with wood filler then paint. If the veneer is too damaged on the top then you can break it off and replace with a piece of real wood and paint to match!! Have fun!!

  12. I worked on a piece like this years ago, and although nice, it's not totally unique or rare. I would give the whole thing a good sanding, and get all those scratches and carvings out... and perhaps buy some veneer and fill-in the missing surfaces the best you can... or not. Deep scratches and dents can be swollen-out by wetting the surface, and then putting a rag over it, and heating it with an iron. Veneer bubbling up? Inject glue under those parts, and weigh it down... original wood is better than new wood. Either way, after sanding, just give it a few coats of stain, and then a few coats of clear (flat, not gloss)... even with those pieces of veneer missing... it'll add character, and still show the wear and tear of use. Good luck!

  13. How lovely to have a wonderful treasure to remember your friend.

  14. Tyge posted up above wonderful solutions for your treasure. There is a shop down here, from the UK, that uses vintage machines such as yours to create wall dividers in their shops. It's called All Saints.

    Good luck with your project and enjoy your treasure!

    :D Lynda

  15. A few Sunday's ago our pastor was giving the sermon and talking about how Mrs. Pastor loves to go to yard sales/thrift store/consignment shops and likes for him to go with. She sees the beauty and cost effectivness of them all but all he sees is other peoples junk! He said he goes with because he loves her and likes to spend time with her (as I'm elbowing my husband). After church Pastor stands at the back and greets us all...I walked up to him (mind you he knows my name), grasp his hand and say "Hi..I'm name is Sue and I like other peoples junk!" He was laughing so hard he could hardly speak! You know what they say...One man trash is another mans treasure! I'm sure you will "treasure" your gift...and you never may rub off on her son someday...LOL


  16. Looks like a lot of work but in the end, you will have a wonderful piece to remind you of your friend AND her son!!

  17. So sorry about your friend's passing. I smiled when I read that her son said he didn't like used stuff. When I was his age, I felt the same way too. Give him a few years and he may change his mind.


  18. Very nice treasures--more precious because they came from your friend--she's smiling knowing you have them in your home and heart! Have a great weekend.

  19. Some of my best treasures were others' cast offs. Which is totally fine with me. Cast offs are much cheaper. lol Can't wait to see what you do with this vintage beauty.

    Thanks for linking to the party.

    Have a terrific weekend!
    Liz @ the Brambleberry Cottage

  20. What a treasure- and with special meaning. Your sewing stand is darling and bet it will be amazing all fixed up however you chose to! Thanks for sharing at FNF! :)

  21. I´m sorry for your loss - i´m sure you will make the sewing machine beautiful and you´ll have something wonderful to remember her by :)

  22. So sorry to hear about your friend. I too am working on a sewing machine cabinet, didn't come from a special place just picked it up at a thrift store. My sewing machine didn't work, which was okay. I'm making a sort beverage center out of it, adding a hutch and a shelf under the bottom, tiling the top where the sewing machine sat. Hope to have it finished by the weekend. I'll post it soon as I'm done.
    Newest follower, come visit when you can.
    Teresa @

  23. How wonderful to have something so special to remember yuor friend by. I love her son's comments.

    But I'm so sorry that your friend passed away. That must have been terribly hard for you.


  24. It's too far gone on the veneer on the top. Use the heat gun method I told you about and it will be no problem. Lowes carries veneer sheets and you can replace yours by gluing a new one down.Or just use wood putty on any cracks after the veneer is off and paint the piece. Good luck...looks like a lot of work.

  25. What a treasure to have to keep your friend near! I have taken the top layer of venner off with my iron and a damp towel. just heat it up and peel away with a putty knife. Then you can put a new piece down.

    My son is 24 and thinks his friends are nuts when they want to go buy new. "it doesn't have any freaking personality" he says. THANK YOU!!! my job here is done!

  26. Uuummm. I can spell veneer... however, I cannot type!