I can barely contain myself with the wonder and excitement of the trash to treasures that I am about to behold.
Since this will be my first full yard sale season with you all, I can’t wait to take you on this journey.
If you aren’t a colossal convert yet, consequently, that will be one of my goals….so just concede.
(oh, I love alliteration)
But I must confess, I have a few projects from last year that must get done before the new excitement begins…especially getting rid of my “trash” to make room for their “treasures”.
Boldly barricaded behind our storage shed is one of my yard sale steals, I mean, treasures from last year.
I was immediately drawn to it, but since it hadn’t been snatched up yet, and it was already 10am (certainly a tell tale death hour for avid yard salers), I assumed it was priced out of my “antique” range.
I loved the lines of the piece, but it was these letter slots that mesmerized me.
I envisioned the careful details that someone had put in back in the 1920’s, and all the heirloom handwritten notes that were meticulously crafted while sitting at this very seat.
But then I envisioned all the work that I would have to put in, and I just wasn’t so sure about my commitment level. Do you know how many unfinished projects I have from this past yard sale season? When I finally complete them, I’ll have blog fodder for one straight year.
Literally, I stood in this woman’s drive way for 20 minutes brainstorming what I could do with this hutch. I decided a great coat of black paint would make it a perfect fit for my foyer wall, but I still hadn’t asked the price.
The tag said, “Make offer.”
Typically, in yard sale terms, that means they want more than its worth.
Oh, but I could just imagine gorgeous knobs….so I was ready to negotiate.
Having seen my fair share of international bargaining, I can handle some US yard sales, but I also want to be fair, and respectful. If you’re one of those that offer a quarter on a $.50 item – stop it!
Now, if it’s $10, you bet I’ll offer $5…just a little tip from the pro.
So, on this day, I was treading lightly.
I sweetly stated, “Oh, I am terrible at making offers.”
Which is true, since I always want them to basically give it to me, but on with the bargaining.
“When you say make offer, do you mean like make a $5 offer or……….”
She cut me off before I could finish my statement. I was going to say $5 or $500, so that I didn’t step on toes and I could get a starting point.
She cut me off, and said, “It’s yours for $5….I just want it gone.”
FIVE DOLLARS, PEOPLE!!!
Feel free to gaze and gawk in frugal fabulitiousness.
I know, I still can’t believe it, and just check out the fretwork – you gotta love it.
Now that your $5 dropped jaw is back up, you may want to sit down for this make-over.
This is by far the most beautiful re-do ever, I can barely stand it.
Can you imagine how absolutely tickled I was when I came across a new blog from an infamous designer – Eddie Ross? I got lost on his site.
He found “my” hutch and look what he did. Isn’t it breathtaking? It’s almost the exact same secretary (yep, found out it’s called a “secretary” by those designer types), and I started screaming. My kids should be use to that by now, especially if I’m in front of the computer. 🙂
Here’s what Eddie said he did…so I think I can too, don’t you?
“As you can see, I started by sanding it down with a fine sand paper, just to scuff up the surface and give the paint something to adhere to. For the primer, I used a shellac-based product called Zinsser. I love it because it dries super fast. And it prevents any dye from seeping through the top coat. Check out the final result!
For the paint color, I chose one of my favorites: Farrow & Ball’s All White. I use it on everything. The mirror I had cut to size for $20. The easiest way is to take the original glass with you. That way, you’ll always get a perfect fit. With the shelves now hidden behind mirror, I could make all the mess I want, and it would still look just as pretty! Fold down the desk, and I have plenty of storage, plus the perfect surface for writing letters or working on my laptop.”
“As a collector, one thing I’ve learned over the years is to be fearless. Just because something’s antique doesn’t mean it’s precious. Don’t be afraid to alter a piece to make it your own. Strip it. Sand it. Recover it in fabric you adore. Like I said, all wood is not created equal. If a chair’s lines are good but you’re not in love with the finish, paint it another color and you’ll probably be much happier with the result. ”
Thank you, Eddie!! Go check out his blog – he is amazing, and full of such unbelievable ideas.
I called my husband down for this. He was insisting that we refinish it since it might be “valuable.” I had already bought the black paint and was ready to go, but he REALLY wanted it to stay with the original finish.
After hours of trying to strip it, and getting incredibly frustrated, I politely and submissively called him, and said, “right now, the value is $5, and it’s not worth $500 to me to try and strip it.”
When I read Eddie’s comments, I was thankful for the permission to paint it, and my hubby, as always, graciously agreed. 🙂
So, should I go white or black. The white is amazing, isn’t it?
And against my apple green walls…ohhh, that’s tempting?