Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Things I Like To Do - Refinishing Furniture

Besides being a writer and artist, I like to do a lot of other creative things. Today, I am going to talk about refinishing furniture.

I like to decorate, resulting in a lot of changing furniture arrangements. When I was a kid, I was recruited to paint things from spray painting dried milkweed pods and pine cones gold to painting the picnic table. We always had leftover paint around, so I used it sometimes to paint furniture for my room.

When my husband was in the navy, we did not have a lot of money, so after we found furniture at yard sales, I painted it. I also inherited some old furniture that my great-grandfather made, covered in dark brown varnish that came off like chewing gum when the wood was scraped and sanded. I figured out how to make upholstered seat cushions and even though everything wasn't a collector's item, the furniture started to blend together.

One of the best pieces of advice that I have ever read was to have all the furniture in your house be roughly the same color. It has worked well - a bookcase in the living room can be moved to an upstairs bedroom or into the kitchen and not have to be refinished. A small table can serve as a beside table or end table. I have a few pieces that I paint, usually white to match the woodwork, and they go anywhere.

I took a class to learn how to cane chairs and I caned most of the old chairs that I was given with broken seats. I have a few more to do. One chair is a neat old wooden high chair that was my grandfather's. It was painted light blue, so I stripped it down then refinished it. I have the finer cane to do the seat, which I have not gotten around to and need to soon because it could be used by some little children that visit.

There is something inside of me that likes to improve things and the feeling of accomplishment is a great feeling, when I look around my house and see how many pieces of furniture I have improved. It kind of makes me feel like my furniture had a beauty makeover.

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