Friday, September 25, 2015

Life on a tilt

Does the dust ever quit? Sawdust I mean. It's everywhere. My sister just parted with my dad's old industrial finish sander. It's the same one I used on her beach dining room table last year. It sands in less than half the time, and creates twice the dust. I can only use it every other day as it is so heavy my hands need a day to recover from lifting it.

This past Christmas I handcrafted these little sailboat ornaments in lieu of actual presents. Most everyone I know is aware that bucks are always in short supply here and scrap wood and creative ideas are plentiful. Each one had the name of the recipient painted on the stern and their birth date on the sail.

I wish I would have taken a money shot of a finished one, but this is all I've got.


Friend Bob surprised his son Jake with this headboard I painted with the Union Jack for him.

This was a heavy dark pine headboard from the '70's that fellow artist Ken gave me.

As an afterthought I stenciled and hand painted a Def Leppard sign to go above his bed as he is a FAN.


I needed more dressers when the relatives moved in so pulled this paint storage chest in from the coat room. It was a ReStore buy for $15.00.

G'daughter Rachel chose the colors and helped me paint this colorful piece. It now lodges in her bedroom full of Arizona clothes. Wait til we get a real temperature drop and some folks are going to have to go clothes shopping.

I love this dresser. I had planned to do something outrageous with it but no time. Rachel decided there were too many scratches on the top, so.....

Downstairs it came for a re-do. This only shows the subtle difference, but that same girl stripped this piece and restored it. By herself. 


When I got this little chair with the broken caning I thought if I watched enough You Tube videos I could bring it back to life and pick up another life skill. Truth is getting shorter and there is not enough time to learn that many new things.

I rebuilt the seat with wood and padded it. Tune in next week to see how I distressed and upholstered it.


Kat's brother Mike found this vintage green cabinet in a hoarder's house that he was restoring and asked if I could refurbish it. No problem. It ended up looking better but still had no personality.

I removed all the hardware and wire-brushed it, planed the bottom of the door and mostly stripped the drawer fronts. Now it looks like this.....

I sanded down until I exposed a deep green and some of the old pine, but leaving some of the chippy-ness of the sage color.


This desk was another $15.00 find at ReStore. I cleaned, painted, and stenciled it for a new look.  One of the teenagers took it over. Yes, sawdust on the top.


Mike gave me this old oak dresser that was left behind in another house he was working on. I refinished the top and drawer fronts and painted the rest of it a dark linen color that was a combination of Oop's colors. There were not enough matching handles so I went through my stash and miss-matched for an eclectic look.


This next one was a fun piece. If you remember last year I took apart a curb-find oak dresser and was going to use it for firewood but my daughter stopped me.

 I cut the top off the dresser and it became the new vanity for Craigslist friend Gina. We headed down to ReStore and found these old radiator parts and I fashioned them into THIS. I got some angle iron from HD and added a lower shelf of old pine flooring.

Gina's dad mounted a vessel sink on top for an industrial look. Here are a couple of finished pics.

I hope she is enjoying her mega sweet new bathroom.


Lastly, this little ragged piece was begging to return to whatever decade it dropped in from.

Alas, Tommy needed a hanging cabinet to keep his manscaping equipment in so I re-fashioned it. I cut off the top and bottom and snagged a bamboo side to use as a top for it. I still hope to add some black pipe with elbows underneath for a towel hanger. Thanks Ken for the many surprises you always send my way.

My most favorite and dreaded amusement park ride as a kid was the Tilt-a-Whirl. I was thrilled at the prospect of riding on it, yet wanted to throw up at the same time.  It gave me a headache and threw me off kilter. Such is my world at present; exciting yet roaring out of control. If only I had a corn dog.

As ever,
La Verne

PS I still have a plethora of projects that I worked on (on my year away). Now that I have a computer resource in residence I should get back to a regular schedule of posting. You know I'm kidding, there is no regular about me.


  1. I am always awwed and impressed! Nice work. You burn the candle at both ends and the midnight oil so here's hoping you won't have to burn a dresser. Love you!

  2. That's the plan Bethy. When I'm dead I hope to have no candle left. I do take a minute to nap once in a while though.

  3. hi La Verne! those sailboats are bursting with charm and beauty! LOVE them, and your furniture makeovers are fabulous!! xx

  4. For you to say that Ananda is a special ear music. Your creative and fun projects are without peer. Seriously folks, if you get a chance to check out A Piece of Rainbow, a much talented artist in Hawaii's blog. DO IT.

  5. La Verne! It's so nice to have you back. As always, your projects continue to impress me. Keep it up. Because the more you do, the more you inspire me. xo