Thursday, September 3, 2015

The 50 Week China Cabinet Makeover

There really isn't a solid reason why, but this china cabinet took me 50 weeks to finish. I wasn't feeling a big creative push when I started working on it, and I think at the time we were transitioning out of an antique store we were in. I.e. I didn't have a big need for additional inventory. Regardless of why, it actually took 50 weeks from start to finish.

Here it is "before"...

As always, a little repair work was needed before painting.

So there are a few things that lead me to believe this is from the 1920s - 30s. I think it has some definite Art Deco elements like the original handles on the bottom, the feet, and the trim work. (And who said I don't use my degree on a daily basis?! Those Furniture History classes come in handy more than I ever thought they would.)

So after 50 weeks, here is the after.


Obviously there was a color change. I made my own "chalky" paint from scratch using Benjamin Moore's Danville Tan. Painting was necessary mainly because of the repair work needed. I also changed the glass on the front. I created a "mercury glass" type of finish instead of clear glass. There are lots of methods for creating mercury glass if you search for it on Pinterest. It's not my first time doing this technique, but a word to the wise: Just like a crackle finish will never turn out the same way twice, mercury glass will never turn out the same way twice. Let's just say I thought long and hard, was definitely sure it was what I wanted to do, took some long, calming breaths, and said a prayer before I started it.

I'm happy the "mercury glass" turned out well!

It would have been fine without the mercury glass finish, but it didn't seem quite complete to me without it.


The handles on the bottom are unique. I'm all about using the original hardware whenever possible.

Here's the before and after...


What a big difference! I know it's hard to tell from the pictures how big this is. It's only about 64" tall, which is on the smaller side for a china cabinet. That's typical for the time period it's from though. I can totally see this being used as anything from bathroom storage to a bar or bookshelf.

Until next time...

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