Oh.. Yeah.. I Got an Antique Apothecary Chest at a YARD SALE!
But seriously… I can NOT possibly express how ELATED I was when I got this beauty!
The whole thing went down like this… Saw an ad on CL for a table at a local yard sale, I
dragged convinced my neighbor to go with me, got to yard sale, no table, no real furniture, a few other people that’s it.. Until I snooped looked in the garage and saw a HUGE Tiger Oak apothecary chest… Seriously it was in two sections 9 drawers across by 5 drawers down! I had no idea if it was for sale or not, but I asked anyway.. ’cause you don’t get what you don’t ask for right? The owner said she had bought it several years ago at a very reputable (awesome) local salvage company and had paid $1,000 for the whole thing.. Ok at this point in her story I pretty much figured uh..uh.. no way will I be able to afford this.. so I asked how much did she want for the section that was 5 drawers across (the larger of the two sections).. it was missing several pulls & half of the side and top.. she thought about it and threw out “How about $100?” What? Did I hear that correctly? (me) “How about $90?” Sold! I would have paid $200 and it was worth way more than that! Part of the side and top were missing because there was a HUGE set of shelves that spanned both pieces and sat on top of the chests. But I didn’t want that… Seriously it made the piece almost 9 feet tall! So some super awesome guys loaded it into the car and just as I was ready to get in the car my neighbor decides that she wants the other side! The lady sold her that piece for $75! It had the same wood problems with the top & side, but it had all of the pulls! So the guys loaded it on top of mine and off we went… extremely excited about our yard sale score!!
Ok… So here is where the story gets typical for me…MONTHS go by and neither of us has done anything to the chests.. she said she was waiting to see what I was going to do and I was waiting for an inexpensive idea to miraculously pop into my head.. (why yes that happens to me, doesn’t that happen to you?) I had some ok ideas for the top: buy a soapstone or granite top for it ($$$), find some reclaimed thick wood ($$$) but I was still stuck on what to do with the sides… I could get one full side by using both halves on one side but then what to do with the other side…what about the crappy baseboard? Replace with feet? Ok so can you feel my pain / frustration? Sometimes a piece goes through many evolutions (mostly in my head) before it settles on what needs to happen. Eureka!, I needed to work that word into a post somehow , it came to me! Build a cabinet around the original main piece and paint it black.. we could use inexpensive pine boards and put ogee edge on the top to dress it up! I called my neighbor and she thought it was a good idea… When my husband went to get wood he picked up enough to make two, a total of $80 for both! My super awesome hubby (SAH) removed the old crappy base, that someone had added years ago, the half sides and top. He cut the new top to create an inch overhang and used the router to put the decorative edge on it. The sides and base got new boards as well. Everything was nailed on, but not glued in order to protect the integrity of the original antique… I just felt like that was important. Then came the “hard” work , I filled the holes and sanded the piece down. In the meantime super awesome hubby (SAH) helped the neighbor’s husband bring their piece down and did the same thing for them… it’s amazing how fast it goes the second time around! We got our piece inside and I painted the new wood in satin black. I did a VERY little bit of distressing along the edges and waxed and buffed the piece… Ok.. At this point remember I didn’t have all of the pulls (and truthfully I didn’t like them anyway) so I took off all of the label pulls, listed them on CL (sold!) and began looking for new ones… Do you KNOW how much pulls with labels cost? How about how hard it is to find them with a 2 7/8″ spread? I have 25 drawers… Let’s just say I will spend more on pulls than I did on the entire piece… and I will STILL feel like I got a deal! I STILL haven’t found the label pulls I want! But here is the after picture without the pulls… The chest is made from solid tiger oak and is really quite awesome! Oh yeah.. My neighbor liked the pulls so she painted hers ORB (they were brass) and they came out great!
Just so you know…we hemmed and hawed about what to store in the piece and finally settled on Christmas tree ornaments! It is in our basement and the tree will be setup right next to it.. I think this will work, otherwise what would I put in the drawers? Dog treats ?
Thanks for taking the time to read this post (again?)…